Mercer Island Half Marathon
I haven’t raced on roads in 4 months. I haven’t raced on roads in not-Crocs in 5 months. But, in my first race for West Seattle Runner (my neighborhood’s shoe store!), it was a good one – 1:09:11.
I melted rubber, kicked dust, gave slanty eyes to the competition, and had a real good time looping the hills around Mercer Island for the 2019 half marathon. This route was my original long run when I moved to Seattle in 2011 and I lived just over the I-90 bridge, but the race was always too close to the Chuckanut 50k for a back-to-back effort.
That brings up my main point. If you’re going to achieve your trail goals, it definitely helps to have some flat speed. The first and last 10k of Chuckanut is on gravel bike path, for example, and the folks who win that thing are usually near (or beyond) Olympic Trial caliber in the road marathon. You can either find an ultra marathon with no flat stuff (sky running races, Backcountry Rise 50k, Needles 50k, etc), or do some pavement to tune up.
All that, plus the fact that the (Covered Bridges 2009, Vermont) half-marathon was my first distance when I started running again after college, motivated me to see what was up with my Turnover. Turns out, Turner Wiley and Tyler Flannery had one more gear than I did, negative splitting their way to first and second. I raced well and held pace through the late up-hills (give or take for the climbs/descents).
I’m glad to have finally fit this into the schedule. Thanks everybody! 2.5 min PR.