This past weekend was the third running of the Morgan Hill Marathon + Half. During the inaugural edition of the event I got injured while training for the marathon and had to back off and do the half. I ended up pacing my mom that year to a PR. Last year I was able to run the marathon and wilted in the heat on the later sections of the course. I set my current marathon PR of 3:20 but fell short of my goal of a Boston Marathon qualifier. This year I’m focused on the California International Marathon so I ran the half marathon as a training run and had a great time.
I had a 20-mile training run scheduled for the day so I woke up early to get an easy seven miles in before the race. After getting my miles in I stopped by home to change my shoes and shirt and grab mom who had traveled from Washington to run the race. One of the things I love most about this race is that I can walk to start line from house.
We got to the start line a few minutes before the race started, settled in to places and started with the gun. My goal for the race was to run at marathon pace (around 7:05 min/mi). I quickly found myself running alongside a couple other runners locked into the same pace I was. After a couple miles there was two of us. It turns out that the other guy, Ken was shooting for a 1:33 or better half which was inline with what I was shooting for.
Together we held a consistent pace for the first seven miles which is a pretty difficult feat on this course. The seven miles are a gradual climb until you get to the top of Willow Springs Road and then you get back all that climbing in one massive downhill.
|Morgan Hill Half Marathon elevation profile.|
After a couple quick miles we settled back into our previous pace for a couple miles. Eventually you hit another uphill on Main Street which slowed us down a bit. Next you turn down Spring Ave which is a nice downhill before entering the park and finish line.
|Morgan Hill Marathon + Half medals from 2010 – 2012|
I finished in 1:33:39 which is my third fastest half. Not bad considering I had already put in 50 miles that week before the race started. After a short wait my mom cruised in finishing a few minutes faster than last year.
|Mom and I after the half.|
After the last two weeks of 60+ miles each and a solid half at marathon pace I’m feeling pretty good about the upcoming California International Marathon in a month. This week is a pullback week and then two more big weeks before it is time to taper.
|Age Group (35-39):||5/88|