I ran the PCRF Half Marathon this weekend. Here’s a quick race recap and pics of what I ate and my half marathon running outfit. LMK if you have any questions.
PCRF stands for the Pediatric Cancer Research Foundation so this race is also known as the Reaching for the Cure Half Marathon. It’s a huge fundraising event for the foundation. And it’s also a special event for those impacted by pediatric cancer. The post race festival is geared towards kids and there are a lot of family teams that do the 5K, 10K and kids run.
The day before the race I did some meal prep because I knew I wouldn’t want to do it after. I didn’t make complete meals, but did wash and chop veggies and make some salsa chicken.
I also chopped dozens of mango because that’s my latest food obsession. The other day my niece told me “Mango’s not food. My mom and dad said mangoes are not food.” They told her this because mango is the only thing she wants to eat – breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks = mango.
And I get it. Mangoes are the only thing I want to eat too. It’s excessive and becoming a problem. Lucky for me – I don’t have any adults telling me I need to eat something other than mango. And I don’t think they do interventions for mango addiction so I’m going to continue this all mango diet until some sort of vitamin deficiency sets in.
But I did cheat on my all mango regimen to incorporate some rice and protein (unpictured) in there too.
Pre-race I had coffee with collagen powder, water with Nuun, oatmeal and banana. I always put my collagen powder in hot coffee because it’s easier to mix. I drink it that way until it cools off a bit and pour it over ice.
I had to leave for the race earlier than I wanted because the streets would be blocked around where I was staying the night before. I parked a lil far from the booths because I wanted to do some videos for instagram. But, another car pulled up right beside me within minutes of me parking. Womp womp.
I did a lil pre-race video anyway (watch my Instagram stories for the good/random day to day hangouts –> @RunEatRepeat).
I don’t know why, but lately some of my videos have this vertical line static on and off (see below). This is just my regular camera (not an app or filter), but it has also happened on video calls and with filters. Grrrr. Have you seen this before? Thoughts on how to fix?
There are so many things I love about this race. I love that it’s for a great cause. I love that it’s a local race, which makes it super easy to get to and have my bf come cheer me on. I love that they have race day packet pick-up. I love that there are a lot of booths at the post race party giving out samples and swag. I love the long sleeve tech tee and bag you get just for registering. I love the big medal.
But there’s one thing I don’t love about this race… it’s HILLY.
And I completely forgot until I registered for the race and looked up the half marathon course. One day I hope I’ll remember – look up the course elevation BEFORE YOU REGISTER. (But… I don’t know if a super hilly course would actually prevent me from running a race. I’d probably still do it, but just have longer to stress about it.)
So… I did a major runner fail and psyched myself out before the race thinking about how hard the hills were last year.
It’s one thing to check the course map + the weather forecast and use that information to adjust your race day goals. You should find a good balance between chasing down BIG GOALS and using all the relevant information to establish A,B,C race day goals.
I didn’t do that. I basically went into race day thinking it would be a long run (which are typically slower than other training runs) and I’d walk as needed. That’s okay. But I let last year’s race experience determine my lack of goals for this year without really taking into account my training. Last year I ran this race in 1:59:56 and this I ran it in 1:49:56. That’s a full 10 minutes faster!!
I ran it that much faster because I felt a lot better than I did last year and I kept checking in with my effort level (not running pace). This is one of my favorite race strategies. *We’ll talk about this in an upcoming post – lmk if you have any specific thoughts or questions you’d like me to address on this topic.*
Before the race I saw Pammy Runs! She just ran the LA Marathon last weekend and is running the Boston Marathon in a few weeks. Pam is fast. She’s always been faster than me. So, when I saw here around mile 6 of the course I thought, “SLOW DOWN”. I immediately thought I was going too fast and going to end up walking the last few miles.
I tried to stay behind her for a while because I knew I couldn’t pass her and wouldn’t be able to chat alongside her. But, I checked in with myself and was still feeling good so I eventually ran up to her side. We chatted for a minute, but she told me to keep going. I hadn’t planned on passing her. I didn’t really want to! I knew I felt good enough to keep pushing, but it took a while for me to realize Speedy (the fast version of me) showed up today.
Funny enough… I reluctantly ran away from Pam and figured she’d pass me in a few. (*Note that my mind was still in the way of my body at this point.)
I finally decided to push it and see what I could do today. I focused on my arm swing, walking through aid stations with electrolytes and staying positive. I’ve been working on a few new brain exercises lately and they really helped!! I did feel myself start to slow a bit in the last two miles, but I didn’t just fade away. I kept pushing for a strong finish.
PCRF Half Marathon finish time: 1:49:56
Sure, this isn’t a PR or super fast for me, but it’s faster than I’ve been running lately. The point is that I’ve been slower since all race cancellations started in 2020, which is fine, but I didn’t have to stay in that zone. I forgot how to push myself physically and mentally. It felt good to push myself out of my comfort zone in this race. (Interestingly, running out of your comfort zone feels HARD. But, it also feels really GOOD after.)
After the race Pam and I scored some Suja recovery drinks. And yes, that is a banana in my pocket (but I’m also happy to see you).
Half Marathon Running Gear links: