Last weekend I headed to Texarkana for the 4th year in a row to Run the Line! This is a fun race along the Texas/ Arkansas border and I highly recommend it if you like running back and forth between states! It’s not the easiest half marathon course but it’s not too tough and the rolling hills just make it all the more interesting…
I had an event at work Friday night and Saturday morning so it worked out well that I wasn’t leaving for the race until Saturday afternoon. What didn’t work out well was leaving the kids. My youngest daughter in particular did NOT want me to go. Even though I would only be gone 24 hours she really doesn’t like me to leave. If she were Abi’s age I would have just brought her along but I didn’t know of anyone I could leave her with while I raced so I couldn’t bring her. The other kids were fine but I hated to leave one crying as I walked out the door… Ughhhh. I only do a couple (maybe 3?) overnight race trips a year and my last one was last April when I went to Boston but it still. Mom guilt big time…
On the way to the race I met my friend Kelli and we went to Restore Cryotherapy in Little Rock. Last week was peak mileage training week for Little Rock and my legs were tired ALL week! Saturday morning (the day before the half) I ran a short shakeout run and it was honestly the best they felt all week. I did 30 minutes of leg compression therapy and 3 minutes in the cryotherapy chamber. When I left Restore I was feeling much better!
We made it to packet pickup in Texarkana a little before 5:00 and luckily I remembered I needed to buy a gel. We met our teammate Beverly there and then the three of us headed over to dinner at our favorite Texarkana restaurant- Ironwood Grill.
After dinner we headed back to our hotel and prepped for the next morning. The predicted race temperature was actually dropping (no complaints here) but I wasn’t sure if I needed warmer clothes. I tend to get hot when I race so even with “feels like” temps in upper 30’s I was fine with tank and shorts (no gloves or arm sleeves).
We got to the race around 7:00 which we figured would give us to warm up and use the restroom. My only complaint about the race was that there were not enough bathrooms. The line was LONG and there were no port-a-potties. During our warm-up Kelli and I found a nearby secluded park (pretty sketchy and there was a random homeless man wandering around) but it did have a restroom. I guess I would recommend it if you were with someone but I would never go there alone.
My actual race/ workout plan was to run 6:40-6:50 pace but I got into a 6:30’s groove and just rolled with it. Ideally in a half I would be aiming for 6:20’s but I knew it would be tough on tired legs plus it’s only 2 weeks out from LRM. I focused on running controlled and consistent splits.
From the beginning I was 2nd female and it stayed that way the entire race. In the back of my mind I knew this was another chance at the State Masters Half Marathon Record but wasn’t sure if it would happen since I wasn’t really tapered or training for a half. My CASA time from January was 1:26:37 and my watch average there was 6:36 so I’d need a 6:35 or faster to beat that time. The last mile of this race has always been my favorite so I pushed it in with 10 seconds to spare.
Official Finish Time- 1:26:27 (2nd FOA/ *New Arkansas Half Marathon Masters Record)
After the race Kelli and I cooled down and then picked up our race awards. This race had really nice Yeti tumblers and Dillards gift cards for the Overall winners.
It was a long drive back home and it will probably take me another day to recover from the weekend. Fortunately I don’t have a race this weekend. My next race is 12 days from now… Little Rock!!! I’m ready to taper. I know I’ve put in the training and I’m ready for this!