A while back, Steve and I signed up for the Tyranena Beer Run. I had always wanted to do this race, as I heard it was a fun way to end the season. The race is held at the Tyranena Brewery in Lake Mills, and offers a 1/2 Barrel and 1/6 Barrel distance. The finish line offers a free lasagna dinner (meat or veggie) and free Tyranena beer. Need I say more?
I hadn’t run a half marathon since my PR at Icebreaker in January, and I wasn’t sure what to expect out of my legs. I was hoping that if everything felt good, I could run around 1:40, or 7:38 pace. However, I haven’t been doing any speed work, and I hadn’t run more than 10 miles since a September trail run. I also had heard that the course was fairly hilly. As a secondary goal, I thought if I could keep the miles under 8:00 that would be ok too.
We lined up for the 11:30am start, and it was chilly, around 35 degrees. I decided to just wear a long sleeve shirt and no vest, which turned out to be the right decision. After the national anthem played, we were off. I ran the first mile in 7:24 and worried that I started too fast, although it felt pretty comfortable. The course was great, winding through the neighborhood before continuing along the shore of Rock Lake. There were definitely some hills in the first 4 miles, but overall not as bad as I was thinking.
The miles were ticking by, and for the most part I was holding 7:25-7:35 miles. The course continues onto the Glacial Drumlin Trail, which was not only pretty, but the crushed gravel surface was nice to run on too. Somewhere around mile 8 I felt things starting to break down. I was about to crash, hard. I quickly took my Double Expresso Clif Shot and washed it down with some water at the next aid station. Mile 9 turned out to be my slowest at 7:47, but a few minutes after I took my gel I felt some energy start to creep back in and was back to 7:30 pace for miles 10-11.
Then it was time to hang on for the last 2 miles. I was really tired, and I wanted to slow down badly. I focused on a few women up ahead which helped me to keep pushing. I passed a couple of them within the last two miles, and I knew I couldn’t back down. Before I knew it, we were rounding the corner towards the finish. I gave it a kick to the finish line and crossed in 1:39:04, or 7:34 pace. I am really happy with the result given the amount of training I have been doing. Or not doing. I also realized that I had fueled the night before with two margaritas, chips & guacamole, and Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. Um…oops? I guess I should be glad I wasn’t running for the port-o-potty during the race.
7:34 average pace
6/117 age group
Afterwards we hung out with friends while drinking beer and eating lasagna. I can’t think of anything much better than that. This was a super-fun race with a great course and I will be back next year for sure to end the season right!