The best part about running in Savannah? No freaking rain.
The worst? Not the best run.
In reality, I did not do all that badly, but I’m still pretty disappointed. While I definitely left it all out there, I don’t feel like I ran to the best of my ability.
Nevertheless, I still ran a half marathon in a reasonable time (for me) and had a good time, so it was still a successful day! So, here’s how it all went down.
I planned to get up pretty early (though, after a summer of 4:15 wake-up calls, that doesn’t seem so bad anymore…) so I could make sure to get a spot in the free parking. Savannah’s pretty cramped, so there was definitely a tight parking situation, but the race provided free parking at the convention center across the river, and then we could ride a ferry back over to the start line.
This was pretty hassle free, though I was in line for the ferry at 5:30-ish. I think maybe the ferry ride is supposed to be a little smoother than it was that morning. Maybe they were trying to hurry? It was pretty nauseating.
I still had plenty of time to check a bag, have a snack and hit the bathrooms a few times before the race actually started. I was in corral 4 (why?? who knows) so I got to take off just a few minutes after the race started.
I started out way, way too fast. I normally negative split my races, so I wanted to try to go out fast and hang on as long as possible. For the first six miles…this worked great!
It’s maybe obvious where things started to head south. I definitely started getting tired into miles 4 and 5, but I thought I could still keep a 9:40-9:50 pace and finish with a 2:05-ish. Those next 5 miles were not pretty and I think that’s why I’m so bummed about the race in general. Obviously, I was walking a good bit, where I would normally only walk through the water stops. I did my best to finish strong through the last mile, but it was painful.
This is what riding the pain train looks like! I’m pretty sure this is one of the worst pictures, so I couldn’t help but laugh a little. My legs hurt so bad. By the time I hit 10 miles, I knew a PR wasn’t going to happen, but I could probably finish under 2:10 if I kept running as much as possible. I ended up in 2:08:42. This is only 2 minutes off my PR (from GHS back in March), so really not bad at all. I’m just disappointed in how I raced. At GHS, I felt strong pretty much the whole way through and raced smart by not taking it out too fast. I will DEFINITELY not be doing that again.
Post race, I spent some time listening to the band in Forsyth Park and enjoyed the nice weather, since I was robbed of that experience at Nashville. I’ve been to Savannah before, but I didn’t spend any time in the park, so it was nice to relax for a while and wander around.
I also found lunch at a little cafe near Leopold’s (the famous ice cream place). They had sweet potato bacon soup and a ham, cheddar, apple butter sandwich. I think it was called The District? I really liked it.
Anyways, Savannah is a great race. It’s a beautiful city, and very flat and all the shops and restaurants are welcoming to runners. Now, I just need to think through a better plan for my next half marathon!