Hello, thank you for joining me along my journey of becoming a Runner! I've always been an active guy, played sports in high school and continued into adult recreation sports after high school. As I started my family and found a career, the activity level slowly decreased. Well my Fiance had enough of our lazy ways and started on the Weight Watchers program and completely overhauled our daily meals. Step 2 was getting more active, so we decided to JOG our annual Juvenile Diabetes charity walk and actually enjoyed the activity. The month following the charity walk, we signed up for our first official 5K and had an absolute blast. From that point forward I have officially been BIT by the running bug and this is my journey to becoming a RUNNER!

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Father's Day Beer Run Half Marathon Recap

Yikes....what was I thinking???

For Father's Day Mrs. Schlub purchased me an entry into the Father's Day Beer Run Virtual Race benefiting The Athritis Foundation.  When she asked me what distance I wanted to run (they offered 5K, 10K, and Half Marathon) I immediately signed up for the half marathon.  Again, what was I thinking.

This past Saturday I was hitting the trails for 13.1 miles and my first ever half marathon.  I headed out a little later than I wanted to and planned to drop three aid bags along the trail so I can grab them throughout the run.  Well I couldnt find one of the trail entrances and was only able to drop two aid bags.

My Vfuels came in the mail on Friday so I had them with me to fuel during the run.  Hit the trail right around 5am.  My legs felt really good and I came out real strong. 

I hit my first drop bag around the 2.5 mile mark and was averaging around a 10 min/mile.  Drank half a bottle of water with an electrolyte tab in it, and headed on my way.

My Drop Bags
 Running miles 1-5 were great, pretty flat trails and I was able to keep a pretty good pace going.  Of course the views were great making it even more enjoyable.

Mile 6 is where things started to get tough for me.  I was on a new trail (not a good idea by the way) that consisted of a long steady incline.  My pace was significantly slower and I was hiking up a lot of the sections.  Once I hit one of the flat sections, I was able to look over the trail system below me.
The trail continued to climb and I continued my running/hiking where necessary.  I was looking for some flatter sections where I could get some time back but it just seemed like a long drawn out climb.  Did happen across this pretty cool cave along the way, snapped this and took off because I didnt want to find out what was residing in there.
Miles 7 - 9 were the worst part of the run.  These three miles had me on the verge of stopping and calling Mrs Schlub to come and get me.  First off, as I was leaving the cave above, I was running along a ledge on one of the flatter sections when all of a sudden a mountain biker came around the corner.  I jumped off the trail, slipped, and luckily caught myself but got some cuts on my hand.  The mountain biker asked if I was ok, I told him I was fine, and we both continued on our way.  A few minutes later I went to pull out my phone from my arm band (which I was carrying in my hand, how stupid is that) and was pissed to find my screen was cracked.  ARE YOU SERIOUS??  I made sure it was functioning still and stuffed it back in my arm band.  Of course I spent the rest of the run cursing in my head (and a bit out loud) about the idiout mountain biker that ran we off the trail.
Mile 8 and 9 dumped me into the backside of the trails where I hit my second bag drop.  It was nice to stop for a second while I poured a bottle of water plus electrolyte tab into my hydration pack.  Challenge was that all the climbing I just did dropped me off on the backside of the mountain and now I needed to go back up.  There was a TON of hiking done through mile 8 and a lot of angry/upset thoughts running through my head.
Mile 10 - 13 were all on pretty flat trail but by this point my legs were shot.  There were many points where I had to stop and walk just to let myself catch my breathe then start running again. 
Coming to the end of the run, looking forward to this made it all worth it...

When I posted about my run last Wednesday, EB over at Running On E suggested I make a finish line for myself.  I thought this was a fantastic idea, so I had my 6 year old make me a finish line so I could cross it at the end of the run.  Totally awesome and meant the world to me after I was done.

I did it, I finished 13.1 miles!  Huge accomplishment for me but there is always lessons learned from these runs.  That is how we become better runners.
1) Hell I completed 13.1 miles, after the fact I can truly appreciate the accomplishment.
2) Vfuels worked out great, anyone who was going to try them I say DO IT!.  For me they were so much easier to take during the run and definately kept me going.
3) My hydration has been excellent.  My pre hydration was really good and during the run I felt like I drank plenty.  I never felt at any point like I NEEDED water.
1) Mentally I have a lot of work to do, I really struggled through the middle miles.
2) I needed more plain water.  Each bottle at my bag drops had electrolyte tabs in them, and as the run went along they really started to taste horrible.
4) Dont pick new trails with tons of climbing for your first half marathon, who does that??
3) BROKEN PHONE....enough said.
Well there it is, The Running Schlub completed his first half marathon.  Of course I cant wait for the next one because this one went so bad but that is one of the reasons I love this sport.  Always another opportunity to sign up for another race and better your previous effort.  More training, more miles, and I'll be ready for the next one.
How did your first ever half marathon go??


  1. Yay!!! You did it! Congrats! I'm so impressed that you did your first one completely solo. That finish line sign is definitely a keeper! :)

    I had a few tough miles around 10/11 in my first half. I didn't know how to fuel at all (i.e. I didn't fuel the entire race) and I got the sugar blues. I learned a lot from that race.

    1. You know, running with someone would of made it sooo much easier.

      The finish line is awesome, great idea, thank you.

      That is pretty rough, but you got some good lessons learned from that race which is huge.

  2. Dude, seriously, GREAT JOB! You tackled a tough route and made it! If/when you do a half marathon on a flat course you are going to absolutely fly through it!

    Around mile 10 of my first half marathon I just wanted to sit down. Luckily my coach came out to the race and she gave me a pep talk that sent me on my way to the finish line. So lucky to have seen her because I really just wanted to sit down on the curb!

    1. I'm thinking the same thing, these trail runs are really going to help me on my road races.

      Wow that is a great coach right there. I didnt have a curb but there were a few huge boulders that I wanted to sit down on lol.

  3. Awesome job, and I love that you had a finish line to cross! Brilliant! Also, kudos for picking an interesting and challenging course for your first half.

    1. The finish line was pretty special for me.Keeping it with all my medals and bibs.

      Dont know if i deserve kudos or ridicule lol. Not very smart picking such difficult trails but it definitely made it interesting.

  4. Good job! A road 1/2 will seem easy for you!

    Um...I think you left something out...You said it was a "Father's Day Beer Run"--how was the beer? Did you have a nice IPA to celebrate?

    1. I hope so.

      HAHA yeah I had a beer later that evening after eating a ton of food and drinking a ton of water. Basic old Miller Lite in our house, did the job to celegrate this achievement.

  5. it sucks that your first half marathon had so much going against it! but you did it and you are a million times stronger for doing it. i can't wait until you do the 13.1 distance on roads, you're going to kill it!

    1. I'm trying to look at it that way as well. Very tough run but I pushed through and finished. And I really hope once I run a street halr marathon all this training will benefit me.

  6. Wow! Good job!!! Trail running is SO much more difficult than being on the road and all those "unknowns" you conquered and moved along. That's great! The phone /mt biker incident would have done me in and made me cry I think....But yeah, I was wondering about the beer too :) Awesome accomplishment Schlub!

    1. I think they both have their own challenges. Roads are really repetative for me so I get caught up in my own head a lot.

      I wasnt about to cry about the phone, but I was pretty pissed and annoyed. I should of stuffed it away like I always do, dumb move there.

  7. I love the idea of a finish line!! Great job, tackling new trail is a big challenge when you are solo running, but you did it! I hate steady inclines up they are the worst...we all need a break from climbing upward after a while! It really stinks your phone was broken, I have had that happen to me on my trail - literally inches from being run over, mountain bikers fly.

    1. The finish line was awesome, so glad EB suggested it.

      The steady incline was really the toughest part, but now I know what I need to work on.

      Yeah my phone breaking sucks. Now I need to go through the process of fixing or replacing. Just a pain in the butt.

  8. Congratulations!!! Wow - a trail run for your first half marathon? You are hardcore! Well done! It sounded tough, you should be extremely proud of yourself. :) That's so lovely about your little one making you a finish line to cross.
    Awesome stuff!! When is your next half now?? :)

    1. Lol as you say it I dont know what I was thinking by running a trail for my first half marathon.

      The finish line was just about the only thing that brought a smile to my face.

      No idea when my next half is, but I definitely want to see what I can do on the roads after this grind.

  9. Yay for firsts!!! My first half was pretty awful too. I was so inexperienced lol! No fuel, no training, nothing but water...yeah, bad. Ja!!

    1. I think that is a pretty common tail. But we all learn from it and become better runners because of those tough races.

  10. Haha, well I guess I should say Happy Father's Day first? :) In all seriousness congrats on conquering your first half marathon on some really tough trails and doing it solo! That's no easy feat, particularly the solo part. The finish line was a great idea!

    My first half marathon was actually my first race ever, in April 2007. I fundraised with Team in Training and ran the Country Music Half in Nashville. It was a blast, because I had never experienced anything like that before, and I was still in really good shape from high school sports since it was my freshman year of college.

  11. The trails were tough but the solo part was just as if not more tough.

    Wow half marathon for your first ever race, that is crazy.


Thank you for your comment!