The Interval, 1/23/18

Joseph Whelan winning the men’s 3M Half Marathon. Photo courtesy of High Five Events.

High Five Events had a big success in their second year organizing the 3M Marathon, with  7,000+ entrants setting a new attendance record .  Runners I spoke with liked the new finish point on San Jac and the “free” beer.  High Five doesn’t yet have the weather under control and the high humidity led to slower than expected times for many.

The men’s race was won by Joseph Whelan in 1:09.  He ran much of the way with Brian Morton, then pulled away after 9 miles.  Morton held on for second in 1:10.  Mike Kurvach, taking a break from trail racing, was third in 1:12.  Matt McCurdy was the masters winner in 1:14.

Jessica Harper winning the women’s 3M Half Marathon. Photo courtesy of High Five Events.

Jessica Harper led from the start and stayed strong to win the women’s race in 1:15. Jen Hall and Anita Perez stayed close through 10K, but Harper prevailed over the last miles.  Hall was second in 1:17, with Perez third at 1:19.  (Jen Hall works at Ready to Run, the running store on Far West.  The New Balance 1400s she sold me a couple weeks ago are feeling fast…)  The masters winner was Tammy Bogle in 1:33.

Check this Statesman article by Brom Hoban for more details on the top finishers.  Full results are here.

I did my normal Sunday run with my pals (The Old Guy Run) and we stopped for a while at 45th and Shoal Creek to cheer.  I saw so many people I know running the race.  Since then, I’ve been bugging them by email, Facebook, Groupme, and carrier pigeon for quotes.  Here you go, in no particular order:

Katie Gwynn, 1:24, first AG:  “Best-supported half marathon in Austin. So much fun to run with so many familiar faces cheering.  Felt great. Weather was a ton better than last year and the head wind kept it cool enough. Goal was to go out conservatively and press on the gas as the miles went by and it went as planned. Long term goal is a sub-3 marathon and this is a good step in the right direction.”

Laura Lansing, 2:06:  “3M 2018. Got it done.  It was a warm one-  Hard race for me.  My legs and body very sore and tired- getting old.  So grateful, though, I was able to run it.  I like 3M.  Planning for 2019.”

Matt Fletcher, 1:28, 5th AG:  “After weeks (months?) of well-executed denial that I could race CIM, then Bandera, then two weeks later expect a PR at 3M, I doubled down Sat night with a late night Black Fret 6 band show with 3 cocktails (4 perhaps?) and half a PBR, so thankfully the lousy weather (and a rare blister) gave me a full release from accepting any responsibility for my part in a mediocre result, though I did have a lot of fun throughout, especially out-dragging some kids (under-40) at the finish who tried to gap me on Duval’s downhill 🙂  The course was better this year (love the new San Jac finish!); the beer garden was brilliant, even in the rain, and the logistics went off without a hitch!  Hats off to HighFive for a fun and well-organised event and thanks to all the volunteers and the spectators for their cheers!”

Paul Terranova, 1:21:  “Believe it or not my last 3M was 2006 and last road half marathon was Decker Challenge in 2014!  Was a great morning to blow out some carbon as I transition from a winter recovery phase to a VO2max phase.  Worked the last 2/3 of the race with 18 year old Cedar Park HS XC senior Travian Holst who has some major WHEELS!!!   He smartly banked about 30 seconds of chip time at the start as I edged him coming up San Jac into the finish chute, proving once again that it’s never too early for a young dog to learn some old tricks!”

Sarah Watson, 1:29, 3rd AG:  “Today reminded me just why I love running  local courses like 3M. Part of the enjoyment for me is being out there trying to get a personal best for that race, and getting to do so, while seeing so many amazing local runners, both on the course and on the sides. Such a tight knit running community!”

Jorge Uribe, 1:34:  “3M is one of my favorite local races. I am happy with my results considering running with a pulled hamstring. The race was mentally challenging because I  had to keep my pace down not to re-injure myself. This was hard because I am used to speeding up on the downhills but my goal was to finish strong and feel good afterwards. I feel I accomplished this. Not my best race but I am good with that.”

Mike Kurvach, 1:12, 3rd place men’s:  “I was just happy to get in an honest effort to gauge my fitness and remind myself what I need to work on. A great course and so many supportive people spectating makes a spontaneous half marathon pure fun.”

Doug Dempster, Amy Rhea, and Peter Flemings post-race at 3M. Photo courtesy of Amy.

Peter Flemings, 1:43:  “I’m chipping away at becoming a runner. My big goal was to keep a steady pace and I was really pleased to achieve that….and the beer was very good.”

Doug Dempster, 1:44:  “3M is always fun even in bad weather! Well done: expo; gear drop off and pick up; good crowd support; better finish on San Jacinto; nice trophies; free beer!  Needs improvement: porta-potties were a disaster; no entry to starting chute closer to starting line; aid stations need to fill cups fuller.”

Anthony Jacobs, pacer for the 1:30 group:  “The conditions definitely weren’t ideal but everyone was pretty well dialed in for the 1:30 group. Brandon Ostrander and I just displayed chrono, distance, and average pace on our GPS. It being a relatively straightforward course with no real surprises to affect our pacing, we really just tried to be generally goofy to those around us and provide moral support when needed. There was one gentleman with us who, because he went sub-90, didn’t have to buy his friends beer. It’s such stories that really illustrate the magic of a well executed race.”

Mike McGinn, 1:20, first AG:  “You don’t get choose the weather on race day, you just get to choose how you race.”

Amber Reber, 1:29:  “3M was a blast! Great fans, amazing volunteers, and fabulous runners to share in the journey. I am excited my sister also ran, and grateful to have my dad there; he’s always been my number one fan!”

Brandon Ostrander, pacer for the 1:30 group:  “Up until this point, my pacing experience was limited to leading one individual on trails. This time around I was leading a much larger pack to the finish line in front of thousands of people. I didn’t sleep worth a damn the nights leading up to 3M but all the high fives and thank you’s were worth it!”

Ryan Widmier, 1:36:  “My time at 3M this year was pretty far from a PR, but I knew that was going to be the case given my training this fall, which has been a bit inconsistent and filled with junk miles. Even still, I’m happy with my effort in the race, and it feclt good to race again. 3M will serve as a motivational springboard to help me focus more on speed work, and I’ll try for a PR at Cap10K. Also, I had just run out of scotch tape at home so this race came at a good time. One complaint about the race – no bananas in the finishers’ goodie bags!”

Jenny Waldron, 1:47: “I became pretty attached to a lofty time goal for 3M, and on race day it was hard for me to accept that I’d have to adjust my pace because of the heat and humidity.  During the race I felt frustrated because the effort I was putting in did not match the pace on my watch!  But, I ran the best race I could on Sunday; my PR will have to wait for another race.  I feel like I have so much to be thankful for in regards to my running.  My weekly mileage is up, I’m feeling healthy, and I have lots of great Trail Roots folks to keep me accountable.  I’m looking forward to focusing on strength, mobility, and building up my mileage to prepare for the Switchback, which will be my first marathon!”

Interesting Articles

Wonderful article from Gina Kolata of the NY Times.  She writes about runners and companies who go beyond their individual sporting, fitness, or business goals to help others and build community.

Pam LeBlanc describes some of the best training hills in Austin.

John Schrup has a review of the new Sketcher GoMeb Razor 2 shoes.  His introduction is here, the main review is here.  Both are hilarious.

Also in the hilarious department, this Runner’s World article collects links to a bunch of running-related articles in The Onion.

I like running 400s for interval training.  This 400m race in Michigan might be a bit different- you run up a ski jump.  (H/T to Andy Bitner)

Let me know if you believe this could work:  late in a long race you take a drink of a carby liquid, swish it around, spit it out, and get a benefit compared to swallowing the drink or abstaining.  Apparently, the presence of the carbs in your mouth tricks your body into releasing more energy to your muscles.  From Runner’s World.

Ultrarunning magazine has named their 2017 runners of the year.  The women’s winner is Camille Heron, the recent winner at Bandera 100K.  The men’s winner is Jim Walmsley.  The interviews with each are quite good.  Walmsley talks about his spectacular failures at Western States and how he’s feeling good about 2018.  Herron is incredible.  She’s averaged 100 mile weeks for 5 years!  Her big goal is to win Western States and the Comrades Marathon in the same year.

Upcoming Races

I’ll be racing on Saturday at the Goodwater Trail Race at Lake Georgetown.  This Spectrum event has 8m, 16m, marathon, and double marathon distances.

The next big race for road runners is the Austin Marathon on February 18.  I’ll write about it and the Distance Challenge standings in the coming weeks.