Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Can I Win "The Bet"?

On May 5th I posted about a bet I had with Joe in my office. There were two parts to the bet--a process oriented aspect (weekly training) and an outcome portion (the actual race results). Well, I bought my way out of the process part ($20 lost) a few weeks ago and now the race weekend is almost here. We'll travel down to St Louis for the RNR Half-Marathon on Sunday.

Do I have a chance to win the race part of the bet? Maybe. Joe needs to run 1:50, I need to run 1:35. Joe has an outside chance of hitting his mark, but it'll be a reach. I think he'll break 1:55, but not reach 1:50. Plus, he keeps talking about being in "marathon training" mode rather than half-marathon training. Whatever. Lots of excuses. We'll see what happens on Sunday morning.

So, do I have a chance at hitting the 1:35 finish time? Probably. It won't be easy, but I'm optimistic. If the weather is good and I don't screw anything up in the next few days, I think I have a realistic shot at 1:35. I ran a 5K race last weekend in 20:28. That time predicts a half-marathon finish of 1:34:36. That's cutting it close! Since I felt pretty darn good at the 5K race (see blog post here), I hope to pull off the 1:35 in St Louis. If everything goes well, and I actually RACE this half-marathon, I might surprise myself with an even faster finish. I'd be happy with 1:35. That would predict a marathon finish of 3:20. I need 3:30 in April for a Boston qualifier (but you need a couple minute cushion to make the Boston registration cut-off). With a 5K finish of 20:28 and a 1:35 half-marathon finish, I'd feel confident entering winter marathon training and aiming for a 3:20-3:25. BQ baby!

If I run my own race on Sunday, don't worry about Joe or any other runners, then I have a good chance at reaching my goal. I'll go out at a steady 7:15 race pace and hold it until 10 miles. If I feel good, I'll pick it up the last 5K. I'll need to hold back the first 5 miles so I don't run too hard and blow up. Then the middle 5 miles will be "stay steady" time. With 3 miles left, if I'm on track for the 1:35 finish, I'll make it. You have to finish strong. Three themes for three sections of the race: hold back, stay steady, finish strong. Not a bad plan. I like it.

I predict Joe runs slower than 1:50 and I run faster than 1:35. I'll be $20 richer around 9am this Sunday.

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