Tag Archives: Bentonville Half

Goal Accomplished: Bentonville Half Marathon 2019

The Bentonville Half Marathon 2019 Race Results are posted. Today was the day to find out if all the training and race preparation has achieved the results that we worked so hard for.

If you follow my blog you know that my goal was 1:45:00 or less.

I planned out race morning to make sure my body was nourished and hydrated correctly for a 07:00 AM start. Although, as my wife and I prepared to leave for the race we already knew the weather was not ideal. The organizers of the race were sending communications that the start time “may” be delayed yesterday. But we didn’t know for sure, so I prepared as planned.

I would have much rather they just went ahead and postponed it earlier in the morning, say 4:30 am. I don’t think anyone would have been upset about that at all. We had already been told to check the race social media page on race morning. But alas, no decision had been made by 6:00 AM when we planned to leave the house.

I arrived in downtown Bentonville, AR at around 6:20, found a great parking spot and took a glance at social media to see if a postponement decision had been announced. But, no decision was made until around 6:28. The race had been moved to a 7:30 AM start.

Somehow, this decision to postpone was difficult for them? Probably the city giving them trouble, but who knows. I hope it didn’t have anything to do with some super runner on a committee saying, “we run in the rain”, that wasn’t just rain.

This is only my second time running a half marathon, both times in Bentonville. Last year it was 25 degrees fahrenheit with ice on the road. We all know you are hard core Bentonville, no need to get struck by lightning to prove it. An abundance of caution much earlier in the morning would have been just fine.

I am glad that they finally did postpone the start.

Bentonville Half Marathon 2019 onechristianman.com
Radar Bentonville Half Marathon 2019 onechristianman.com

So, I went ahead and drank a little more of my Zippfizz and relaxed in the truck for a while. I knew I would need to hit the restroom again anyway before starting the race. Luckily, we parked at First Baptist Bentonville and they graciously had their gym open for runners to get prepared for the race.

The churches and businesses in downtown Bentonville, along with the volunteers, really help make this race a great experience before and after the race. And the residents that live around the route come out and really cheer on the runners. It is a very enjoyable. There is one particular spot on the route, at the top of “the hill”, where the high school band was playing one of those high energy drum busting songs that get your hype up. I needed that for the last quarter mile for sure.

Well, it was around 6:50 and the rain seemed to just stop. I had stayed in my truck because I didn’t really want to get my shoes wet if I didn’t have too, so I put my race bib on and we went in the gym to use the restroom and stretch.

It was damp and 45 degrees outside when I got to the start line. But it wasn’t raining, and that was something I had prayed for. But the course was very damp. It did start slightly misting when I got to about mile seven until mile eleven, but not bad. Luckily on the race I was able to stay out of puddles until about mile ten, but my right foot wasn’t too wet.

As I went to the start line, I decided I needed to get near the front area of the crowd. I knew that any delays in my pace on mile one could kill my chances of getting to my 1:45 goal. And I was right as you’ll see in my pace chart in the photo gallery. So, my wife took a picture, I kissed her, and headed to the first area of the line.

Bentonville Half Marathon 2019 onechristianman.com
Bentonville Half Marathon 2019 onechristianman.com
Bentonville Half Marathon 2019 onechristianman.com
Bentonville Half Marathon 2019 onechristianman.com

The first 10 miles of this race had to be ran in a pace that gave me room to be slow on the last 3 miles. You see, the last 3 miles of this race, are all uphill. And in my training, I knew that those last 3 miles were taking me around 0:08:10, 0:08:20 and around 0:10:00.

So my mental math had me needing to be around an average of 0:07:50/mile average on the first 10 miles. I pushed my hard on the downhills and kept myself to stay under 0:07:50 on the flat spots. This put me at an average of around 0:07:41 when I hit mile 10. I had done it!

Bentonville Half Marathon 2019 onechristianman.com
Bentonville Half Marathon 2019 onechristianman.com. Thumbs up on pace at mile 6.5

But, I had not run a full 13.1 miles since last November, when I ran a 1:49. And this was only my third time trying it. So, those last 3 miles, while I had trained on them during my last four long runs, I had not done them after running 10 miles since April 7, 2018. And, I only had a little over 27 minutes to finish. So I basically needed to run an all uphill 5K in less than 27 minutes, after running 10 miles. No biggie.

Here are the results:


Bentonville Half Marathon 2019 onechristianman.com
Bentonville Half Marathon 2019 Finish Line onechristianman.com
Bentonville Half Marathon 2019 onechristianman.com
Bentonville Half Marathon 2019 Finish Line onechristianman.com

Overall, I met all of my goals for this race. Training and mental preparation made it happen. Thank you, Lord, for health, motivation and safety on the journey to reach my goals.

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Training for the Bentonville Half Marathon

It’s cold today, 38 degrees fahrenheit. But not as cold as the 26 degree start temperature and ice for the actual race last year when I ran my first half at 1:56.

Cold weather training onechristianman.com
Cold weather training, layers are important onechristianman.com

This year’s goal is 1:45. This is an 8 min/mile pace or better for 13.1 miles. So with less than a month left to train, I have to be out running the course on the weekends. I need to learn when to push the pace and be ready for the 4.8% quarter mile hill that is include in mile 13 of the half marathon.

So I suited up for cold weather training as I have previously blogged about including my thermal gloves. Lip balm and Aquaphor on the cheeks is important.

My training route isn’t exactly like the race route. I’m actually trying to trick my body into doing more hill work now than I will on race day. How? Well the Bentonville Half Marathon route includes that 4.8% grade hill on mile 13ish. My training is putting that hill in route with me still having 2 miles remaining on my run. This forces my tired self to try and push pace after the hill for 2 more miles. But on race day I’ll actually do those 2 miles on fairly flat ground before hitting the hill.

I’ve found that after the hill, it takes me about .6 of a mile to get back my breath and get back to a pace near 8:00/mile. But on race day, I’ll be pushing that two miles before the hill and I can put what’s left in the tank on conquering that last mile with the hill.

Bentonville Half Training onechristianman.com
Bentonville Half Training onechristianman.com

During the week I’m trying to hit hill repeats on the treadmill with the elevation setting due to the low temps outside lately. But I can’t stand the treadmill. Those session tend to be 5k (3.1 miles) on Tuesday and Thursday. I’ll do that for two more weeks before starting to cut back and prepare my body for race week preps.

Today’s results seem to point to the training plan working as needed.

The weekend before the race I’ll try to hit a fast pace 10 mile run. So I’ll probably do the 5K on Tuesday and just 1 mile on Thursday with cross training on Wednesday on the bike.

The Tuesday before the race would be a 1 mile shake out run. Then short bike on Wednesday, and another 1 mile shake out on Thursday. I’ll also skip leg day on weights on Tuesday of race week. I’ll also skip core exercises on Thursday and Friday.

This will help make sure that the muscles in my legs and core have sufficient energy stored up and ready to use for race day.

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Parents only weekend!

The kids are at D-NOW getting some Biblical training which means a kid-free weekend for Jamie and I.

Friday night dinner, check. Coffee shop Saturday morning, check. Lunch with the builder to discuss a remodel/addition, check.

Yes my eyes are closed

Now I’m sitting here letting lunch settle before the second half of my Saturday.

My other list items include some much needed relaxation time and marathon training, before date night part-two tonight.

I know those two things don’t seem to mix. But I have a goal. I want to complete the Bentonville Half Marathon in 1’45” or less. 😅

To date I’ve only been able to do 10 miles at the 8 minute/mile average. So I have four weeks to get my mind and body right.

Any advice is appreciated. How did you push over that last 3 mile hump?

Running The Life Marathon #KeepOnKeepingOn

The New Testament writers were inspired to use sports analogies on several occasions.

Paul writes about finishing the race in 2 Timothy. This year I ran my first half marathon and I now better understand what Paul’s intentions were when writing this passage.

The first time that you run a distance of 13.1 miles and finish in a time under two hours, you experience several stages of physical discomfort and mental doubt along the way. In preparation I did several shorter distance training runs before the attempt, but actual race day has its own obstacles that can thwart your pace goals.

This is similar to life as we steadily hurdle through our timeline to our final breath. Yet with this current body we only get one shot at the life marathon. Your life marathon training happens along the route, so don’t miss the training stops in the ultra-marathon of life.

In the life marathon we are not trying to finish faster to reach a PR, we are trying to find crowns along the journey. We are collecting treasure that is incorruptible and payable upon first death. Although, earning a crown in this life can bring joy and new energy while we are still in the race, similar to a gel pack in a long run.

During our life marathon we also train our physical bodies in part to help extend the life marathon. Remember the goal is to fulfill God’s purpose for your life which has a base goal of the Great Commission which is to make disciples, baptize them, and teach Jesus’ commands. (Matthew 28:18-20).

I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith; in the future there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day; and not only to me, but also to all who have loved His appearing.
2 Timothy 4:7‭-‬8 NASB