Race Report: Hole Half Marathon
This will likely be a short one: Today I raced the somewhat confusingly-named Hole Half Marathon, which is entirely unrelated to the Jackson Hole Half Marathon I did earlier in the summer. It went fine.
I went in without any goals other than get a good workout; my training plan had a 2:30 run today, and this seemed more fun than running that long. If anything, I just wanted to do my best and have some fun, and with that in mind, well, mission accomplished.
The race started at 9:00 am from the Presbyterian Church in Jackson, and followed a route very similar to the other Jackson Hole Half Marathon, albeit in the opposite direction, ending in Teton Village, which meant a slight grade for most of the course. It was cold at the starting line, just shy above freezing, at 34°F (1°C,) but as is normal this time of year, I expected it to warm up quite a bit, so I didn’t bring gloves or a lot of layers. The race was cupless this year, so I brought a bottle of Maurten Drink Mix 320 Caf 100; that was my only fuel and hydration for the entirety of the race (I also had a couple gels just in case, but didn’t use them.)
After running through a few quiet neighborhood streets, we joined the full marathon course and headed towards Wilson on the community path. From there on, it was… completely uneventful, I really don’t have much of anything of note to write about. I kept a steady pace of around 5:00 min/km for most of the race, and had no issues, pain, or stitches at any point. Towards the last five kilometers or so, Ian, one of the marathon runners, tagged alongside me and helped me push my pace a little faster, which I appreciated. I ended up with a finish time of 1:47:28, slightly slower than my previous half marathon, but I’m confident I left nothing on the table so I’m feeling pretty good about it. I finished 4th in my age group and 20th overall, which was a definite improvement since last time.
On the equipment front, I swapped my Wahoo Rival watch and the Stryd pod for my Apple Watch for this race. For whatever reason, the Rival has become very unreliable lately, crashing frequently during workouts, sometimes randomly factory-resetting itself, and has stopped connecting to the Stryd pod altogether. Thankfully, the new running features in watchOS 9 meant I could just use my regular Apple Watch today, and it worked just fine. Its implementation of running power, in particular, seems to track very closely with Stryd’s, which helped me with pacing; I tried to stay between 230 W and 240 W for most of the race. It’s definitely good enough I don’t think I’ll keep using Stryd going forward (although I’ll need to replace the Wahoo; there’s no way I’m doing an Ironman with an Apple Watch.)
Overall, this was a fun day; I got a pretty good workout and I’m feeling pretty good about my performance, considering I only started running consistently in March. Next up is my final race of the year, Ironman 70.3 Arizona. As of today, I’m feeling strong and ready to start tapering. I’m excited to see how I do in Tempe in a couple of weeks.