Sunday, November 8, 2009

Race Report: Tyranena Beer Run -- Half Marathon

This Saturday, Jason and I competed in my fifth half marathon of the year and his second. We ran in the Tyranena Beer Run. They called it the "half barrel" route. They also offered a "1/6 barrel" route at the event. The race took place in Lake Mills, Wisconsin.

Registration was closed, as the race had met it's 1,500 participant cap. My mom's family is from this small town, so we dropped the kids off with my parents at my grandparent's home and got on our way to the race. We had to park down the street, because the event parking lot was full over an hour before the race. So, we had to park and walk (not far).
I was happy to be racing with Jason again. This was only the second time we had the chance to race together this racing season.

I snagged myself one of these cute ringer-tee's, in my goody bag. Not a technical tee that I'll use for a workout, but at least it was something a little different from the standard white racing t-shirt.

Due to the expected weather for the season, this race starts later than all other races I've competed in. The 1/2 marathon didn't start until 11:30 and the 1/6 marathon didn't start until 12:30. Last year it was very cold and drizzly, I'm told. This year the weather was close to 70 degrees!! It was an awesome November day for racing.

Before the race, I had a breakfast of waffles and yogurt. I also had a banana and a bag of Sports Beans before the race. Unfortunately, I don't think I consumed enough that morning, because I felt famished from mile 1 to mile 13. I just don't think I was ready to race so late in the morning, when I was already for lunch. I really should have planned better.
My dad took this picture around mile 2 and I was already feeling like crap. Just an off day, I guess.

The pre-race email had said that the course was hilly, but that they didn't have an elevation map. I had no clue what was in store for me. In the first half of the course, there were so many hills, and other points of elevation that seemed like hills/mountains, just because I was sick of hills at that point! The second half of the course was relatively flat, so I really welcomed that. A lot of the second half was on the Glacial Drumlin State Trail, which was nice and scenic, but I think that the crushed gravel made me slip a little and I was constantly adjusting my groove.
I never got into a rhythm during this race. I downed a pack of Sports Beans again and a gel, but never felt a rush from either of them. There were four water and Gaterade stations. I feel they should've had more aid stations and more volunteers. I never stop and walk at water stations, but was forced to walk all four times, because I was waiting for them to pour the water/Gaterade. At the last water station, they even ran out of cups. I heard that runners were grabbing used cups from the ground and garbage and filling them up or using their hands. People were really thirsty, because the heat was rising and we had all tackled those huge hills earlier on.
There were so many points on the course that I felt like quitting, but didn't. Once, I even wondered if I was coming down with something, as Jackson had H1N1 earlier that week.

I even gave myself a 10 second countdown to walking at the top of the last hill, around mile 11. I have NEVER walked during the race, and gave in on Saturday. Unfortunately, the small break backfired and I felt like my hips locked up when I started again. The last 2 miles were really tough. I was never so happy to hear the even over the horizon, and the music over the loud speakers. I knew I was getting close.
I had hoped to set a new PR, under 1:55:59, or at least hit my second goal of going sub-two hours. Unfortunately, neither goals were met on race day, although I wasn't too far off.

My chip time was 2:04:35.

overall place: 459 out of 865
division place: 47 out of 131 (22-29 F)
gender place: 153 out of 419
time: 2:04:35
pace: 9:31

Everyone I heard from was about 5-6 minutes off of their goal or expected finish time. So, I'm trying not to be too hard on myself. When I met up with Jason after the race, I just put my head on his shoulder. He must've known how upset I was, because he just said, "That was one tough course". He set a new PR, but was about 4-5 minutes slower than what he was hoping (after all of his Ironman training this season). He finished about 10 minutes ahead of me, and I think he was beginning to wonder where I was on the course.

We stood at the finish line, after we finished, to watch some of our friends to come in. Unfortunately, by the time we got to the event tent, the line was so incredibly long, that we didn't get to redeem our vouchers for free beer or the really yummy looking lasagna.

Despite my time and bad attitude, it was a beautiful day for running and racing and I really am glad I did it. It was nice that many relatives were handy to cheer us on and my grandparents got to see me race for the very first time.


  1. Not good on the water situation. 70 degrees needs more than 4 water stops! Nice race report. Great job on the race but I would be seriously bummed about missing out on your food/drink vouchers!! So nice you had family to come and cheer you on. 5 half marathons in one year is quite an accomplishment. Congrats!!!!

  2. Sorry it didn't turn out like you expected. Sounds like you gave it your all though - and it goes without saying, but you shouldn't feel bad about that. Hot hilly course is *my* recipie for disaster. Major kudos. Plus you got a cool t-shirt!

  3. Great job! Any race with "beer" in the title is a good race in my book! :-)

  4. Nice shirt and you finished! Walking is hard but I want to do it in every race, ugh!! That's neat that your family was there to cheer you on, I'm sure you inspired them!

  5. Sounds like a rough one! Glad you finished!

  6. Great Job! Especially considering the conditions. It's always tough when it turns out to be hotter than expected. Plus, the shirt is awesome!

  7. Congrats on an impressive time! I think you should be proud of yourself :) Your kiddos are adorable!