But wait! We can explain! We feel that many factors slowed our time during the Princess, which incidentally was our first half. We learned a lot in it.
MOON: That, and... Jenn and Moon: now with bionic legs.
JENN: It's true. We got the upgrade. We stroll to the moon on our lunch breaks now. But we've decided to play fair and don regular legs for the half. You know, so as not to demoralize the others.
JENN: Which brings us to
MOON: No. Hot and humid. Not quite to the max, but enough to make running at 6AM unpleasant.
JENN: Experts recommend you decrease your speed in the face of heat and humidity. This was therefore not a help.
However! Southern California is professionally a sunny 75 degrees year round, right? That's what it DOES. 5AM should feature a lovely brisk running weather forecast.
MOON: Well, I'm currently getting a lot of practice in unpleasant weather. So, either way, I will be set!
JENN: Factor #2: the crush of people. During the Princess, we encountered what seemed at times to be an impenetrable series of human walls. We did a lot of dodging and braking and weaving and going around. It adds up.
MOON: I remember getting to the 5K mark and thinking, "will this let up?"
JENN: It sort of did, eventually, but not until... mile seven, would you say? Definitely after the castle. The castle was still crowded.
MOON: Yeah, it got a little better, but I don't think I was ever running freely, if you know what I mean.
In my head, I imagined running through the castle gloriously one-by-one and having a private moment of triumph, ha!
JENN: If only! But we have some strategies to combat this problem for Tink.
First off, by aiming for a 2:20 finish, we'll hopefully be placed in a corral among faster runners who are less likely to form a blockade.
Second, one of the nice advantages of Disneyland is its compact nature. You can walk to everything, and that includes the starting line from our hotel.
That means no huge line for the bus. No fighting traffic once we're ON the bus. No lengthy walk just to get to your corral, even! (Or so I hear!) So - we can get up at the same time, but be at our corrals MUCH sooner. Hopefully toward the front, so we can start the race off free and easy!
JENN: This brings us to Factor #3, which is the factor we brought upon ourselves: we walked. Two. Whole. Miles. Not in a row, but STILL. Why did we do that again?
MOON: I think at the time the question was more, "Why not?" Honestly, when I work out at home I usually never walk for more than .25 miles
JENN: Me neither! I think our psyches got the best of us. At the time I was like, "Well, I've run nine miles already. I'm tired." It made sense. But looking back on it, I know I didn't need it. Not really.
MOON: Agreed. I think we burned out physically and mentally near the end.
JENN: And it was our first half marathon. We just wanted to DO it. Well, now we've done it. We know we can. Time to starting doing it RIGHT.
So. Not to say walking is verboten in all future cases, but we'll know better than to keep it up for more than the few minutes we need to replenish our energy stores.
MOON: We will be ready! We've been keeping up with our running schedules, running together, eating well, and now we're even blogging about it!
JENN: And that brings us to Factor #4, which is essentially - we will be ready!
MOON: Steve Holt! (We haven't said it in a while, right?)
JENN: I wouldn't say we were under-prepared for the Princess, but it was our very first race and we only had our eyes on the prize for a few months.
But we decided to go for the Coast to Coast medal pretty much as soon as the Princess medals were around our necks. Which means that by the time January rolls around, we will have had nearly a year to prepare, both physically and mentally.
And! It will be our third half marathon, because we will have run our second in September, which means more learning about how to most effectively run a race.
MOON: I'm actually pretty excited about September!
JENN: My PR for 13.1 miles in training is down to 2:13. My goal is to have it shaved down to 2:10 by the time we hit CA, but secretly I'd like to get to 2:05... we'll see!
MOON: I just started training again at the end of May, so my goal for September is 2:20 with no walking. Then we can resubmit our proof of time, which may help our corral placement!
JENN: To review:
Better weather + fewer roadblocks + less walking + more preparation = a half marathon finish time that's 30 minutes faster than the Princess. We can do it!
MOON: We WILL do it!
JENN: As Moon so rightly said: STEVE HOLT!
Don't forget, you can follow us on Twitter @fairestrunofall. To see how our training is going, check out Jenn's dailymile here and Moon's dailymile here. If you have any questions for us, leave a comment or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. See ya real soon!