Day 8,9,10 – My Ultra Journey

The MIssissippi River Levee, Greenville, MS

The MIssissippi River Levee, Greenville, MS

Rest, Run, Rest – Getting ready for the Hotter Than Hades Half Marathon in Tribbet, MS. Wednesday I was traveling back to Jackson, MS from Salt Lake City, UT and had run 800m intervals on Tuesday, so I had planned to take Wednesday off. Thursday I ran 4 easy miles and took Friday off. Left work early on Friday and a coworker picked me up with another coworker. We picked up another local runner and headed for Tribbett and Greenville, MS.

The race HQ was in St Johns Episcopal Church, so we checked in there and picked up our swag bags, then drove over to Greenville to check in to the hotel. After we dropped our stuff in the room, we had about an hour until the prerace dinner started back at the church, so the four of us headed over to Greenville to check out some of the local history. Snapped a photo of Nick on the levee, the pose worked out perfectly. Then we headed back to the church for the pasta dinner.

Supper was great. Salad, bread, four pastas including a veggie option and dessert. Red wine if you were so inclined. The church and the race crew did a very nice job with the supper. Logistics at the bag pick up were a little congested and one of our crew ended up with the wrong race bib, but other than that things were smooth, like buttah.

After supper we drove the race course to get a feel for what the morning would be like. For this race you meet at Mitchell Distributors in Tribbett between 5:15 and 5:45. Get on a school bus and get bused to the race start 12 miles to the south. It was clear from the drive that this was going to be a grind. The race starts at 6:15 but this time of year the sun is already up at that time and the temperature would quickly rise in to the upper 70’s to low 80’s. Driving the course allowed me to have some markers in my mind that I knew I could look for late in the race when I was not feeling well.

After that it was back to the hotel to settle in and get some sleep. My goal for the race is to PR. I have run 9 marathons, but only one other half marathon, which I ran in 1:37. So I’d like to come in better than that, under 1:35 preferably. I have studied the splits and plan to go out about a 7:35 pace for 3 miles, then lower the pace to 7:15 to 7:20 and hold it there. Then push the last mile as hard as I can. Hopefully the heat will not be too bad.