Friday, April 27, 2012

Race Recap: New Mexico Centennial/NM-TX Challenge Half Marathon

4/20/12 - Race Day -1

For some reason, I was thinking that the drive down to Hobbs was a 3 hour drive when it is just barely a 2 hour drive. If I had realized that I would have just left early Saturday morning since the half marathon had an 8am start time. From where I live it is pretty much a straight, long, boring drive to the south in order to get to Hobbs. Now, I've only been there once in the middle of the night and I was surprised to see that the population was about 20, 000 more than my town. I had always thought that Hobbs was a small town by New Mexico terms. Anyway, it's a city based on the oil that is pumped from it's fertile grounds. If you've ever lived near an oil field or refinery you know the smell that comes along with them. It wasn't really bad, but it was noticeable at times.

I met my local running friend, Teresa, at the race packet pick up and we chatted at bit making plans to meet for the free pasta dinner that the race was putting on. Since I had left home without having any breakfast or lunch I was hungry at 3pm so I headed over to Schlotzky's for a sourdough pepperoni pizza. After eating I headed over to WalMart because I hadn't brought a swimsuit to go into the pool or hot tub but found on checking into the hotel that my room didn't have a tub. I looked around for a bit and decided against getting a suit so I headed back to the hotel where I got my gear together, took some pics and played on Facebook a bit.

At 5pm I headed down to Teresa's hotel to pick her up and we made the 20 minute drive to Lovington where the pasta dinner would be and were the full marathon would start the next day. The food was pretty good...can't really complain when it's free! lol! I had a large serving of linguini with alfredo sauce, a big serving of spaghetti with meat sauce, salad, 2 breadsticks, cake and 3 glasses of lemonade. After dinner I dropped Teresa off and went back to the hotel. After sitting around for awhile I decided that I, indeed, did want to soak in the hot tub (I was still a little achy from the previous weekend's double). Luckily, I decided to go see if the pool and hot tub were busy before heading back to WalMart only to find both full of teenages. Nope! Not happening. I went back upstairs and got ready for bed. I think I actually fell asleep before 10pm...a record the night before a race!

4/21/12 - Race Day

Race day outfit.
I woke up before my alarm which I had set for 5:30am. I quickly got showered, taped up and dressed then headed down to toast my Bagel Thin. Thank goodness some hotels are leaving their breakfast appliances out all the time now! :)  I thought that I could get ready fast enough drive over to Lovington to take some pictures at the start but I guess I was moving slower than normal...or I should've gotten up at 5am instead of 5:30am. I headed to the start at the Western Heritage Museum at around 6:45am and just wandered around until starting time. I saw that this was going to be a small race maybe 100 in the half marathon. I lined up in the back third of the need for corrals...and then they asked us to move back a bit. Somewhere in the movement they started the race which caught a bunch of us by surprise and then we were off.

Half marathon, 10K and 5K starting line pics.
Things started off fine early on but by the middle of mile 2 my pelvis and ITBS was acting up and I began walking more than running. I kept trying to push harder but the pain, while not severe, was enough to make me walk most of the least half, probably closer to 3/4. I did see some cool things like the remnants of the old Hobbs Army Air Field (which I didn't know ever existed) and the state prison (lol!). I had no issues with cramps as the weather was very cooperative with a strong breeze and comfortable temps. What should have been a fast, flat course ended up being a slow, flat course for me. I finished with my worst time ever so far 3:07 and some change.

Sign noting the location of Hobbs Army Air Base from WWII.
A lone marathoner heading towards the turnaround point.
That's NM Junior College in the distance,
not too far from the finish line.
Psych...still have to run around the front and around it!
After the race Teresa saw me at the finish...she had finished the FULL marathon about 40 minutes before me!! lol!! And we chatted a bit before I headed over to see how long the wait for the massage therapist would be. With a list of 5 people ahead of me and the time past 11am already I decided to walk back to the hotel, stopping at a convenience store to get some chocolate milk since I had to be out of the room by noon. As soon as I got in the door, I jumped into the shower threw everything haphazardly into my suitcase and made my way downstairs.

Because I didn't have my usual beef teriyaki I think I got a major craving for beef going. I decided to stop at a local steakhouse and ordered a teeny tiny 6oz prime rib was the first time in a very long time that I haven't finished a piece of meat that small...I only got through about 3oz!! After a quick stop at Sonic for my addiction (Real Fruit Lemon Slush) I headed home for an uneventful drive...other than heading north on the wrong highway! I arrived home around 2:15pm and immediately fell asleep for 3 hours. I guess I was tired!! ;)

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