Sunday, April 18, 2010
Horsetooth Half Marathon
Today I ran the Horsetooth Half Marathon, one of the popular local races that's been around for a million years, or at least as long as I've been running. It's a hilly course that starts by Hughes Stadium and climbs over 500 feet in the first 2 miles. It continues north passing over the dams of Horsetooth Reservoir, along Centennial Drive with views of the foothills, Horsetooth Rock, and Fort Collins, with plenty of challenging climbs until the big descent toward the town of Bellvue.
Then it takes a right over Bingham Hill road, more hills to climb, then turns north on Overland Trail, followed by a turn onto the Poudre Trail bike path for the last 5 miles of fairly flat concrete into Old Town Fort Collins, and ends at New Belgium Brewery (where they brew Fat Tire Ale).
I ran well, I didn't expect to cover the course in much less than 2 hours but I ended up with 1:49 and a few seconds. I powerwalked up all the hills, which was a big advantage for me to pass all the people who went anaerobic trying to run up the big climbs. I flew by them without working very hard on the way down. Then on the bike path I was able to manage sub-8 minute miles without working too hard, leaving me with a feeling of confidence for the upcoming Keys 100 race. I'm feeling a little more fit than I expected to.
I was also happy to beat my time from last November at Boyd Lake, since this is a much tougher course. I did make some progress over the winter. I was sort of dreading the run all weekend and this morning, I'm really not into mass humanity and fast running, but it turned out to be perfect weather, cool and sunny after the fog burned off, and I enjoyed my run.
This afternoon I took advantage of the sunny day to plant the wildflower seeds in the rock garden.
Only four weeks to the Keys!