50 State Challenge Map

50 State Challenge Map
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Monday, May 7, 2012

NJ race day

In case you're wondering, I did not hit my goal of 1:30 in NJ this past weekend.  But, it's OK.  It was a great Half and I'll just have to work a little harder to improve upon my time.  See here.  I finished in 1:36.  I had a negative reaction at first and was simply mad at myself.  However, I'm staying positive and certain I'll hit it during one of my upcoming 43 races I still have to run.  It will happen.

Race day started very early.  We were up at 4:15 to get ready and go pick up my good friend Teresa.  We had plenty of time to get to the race that started at 7.  However, we did not anticipate the traffic we would hit.  It was bad.  We were crawling at one point trying to get to the parking area.  And once we got there it was a bit chaotic as we were being directed to a large patch of grass with no clear parking lanes.  But, the organizers did their best and we found a spot.  At that point it was time to race.  No time for a trip to the restroom or to even stretch (I'm feeling the effects of that today).  There was also no time for some pre race pics that I like to get.  This is why you'll only see finish line shots.  We got out of the car and started a light jog to the start line.  As we approached I noticed that our wave had already started.  So we jumped in a bit behind the start line and got going. 

I started with a good pace and optimistic I could move through the crowd of runners in front of me to an open lane that wouldn't hinder my time.  I was wrong.  I hit a wave of runners and began to slow my run.  I kept thinking I could make up the time as the crowd started to dissipate.  However, it took some time.  It took until around mile four for me to really get some open road in front of me.  

I picked up my pace as best I could hoping to cut my time.  But, once I hit my 10K at 43 minutes I knew it was going to be very difficult. 

The race itself was very nice with the best saved for the end.  Finishing at the beach was great.  It was a cold, cloudy morning so there was no play time on the beach.  But, walking the board walk to go over the last 13 miles was good. 

I now look forward to Cleveland.  That's my next Half in two weeks (May 20). I'll say this now.  1:30 in Cleveland won't happen.  I say that not because I'm negative at this point but because my weekend in Cleveland won't be for just a Half.  My very good friends Andy and Kerry are getting married.  The best part of that is their wedding is the night before the Half!  So the blog entry for that weekend will include both race day and wedding pics.  It's going to be a lot of fun to see if I can maintain my runner's discipline and keep the drinking to a moderate level.  Just an FYI.  My discipline isn't always that great.

Check in in a couple of weeks as my weekend in The Cleve will be a lot of fun to read about.


  1. RE: Cleveland - Running a half still drunk/hungover might be horrible for you, but it could make for an entertaining read. Given the circumstances, I think it's a good move that you're setting the bar low for this race.

    Keep up the good work, Berto.

    1. Thanks, Eric! I will say this. If I can run it hungover and hating life AND still hit my 1:30 goal ... well that will make for some damn good blogging.