Capital City Half MarathonBy Tristan-OH Well its that time of year again... I've been running Cap City for many years now (I lost count, maybe I'm on #6?). I started out just doing the 5k, but the last 3 years have been the half marathon. This has always been a favorite of mine and I've reported on it the last 3 years so this year will be no different. Of course last year I was struggling with leg issues bad, and wasn't in racing shape so I ran it with Yvonne at her pace. This year we both entered again. I've still been struggling with some issues with my right leg, but after the Earth Day Half Marathon we ran together I felt warmed up and ready to go. I got decent rest the night before, had what seems to be my 'usual' pre-race dinner of grilled salmon and wild rice and a glass (or two) of wine. I have no idea what's best, but it seems to be working. Race morning I made myself 2 smoothies, the same two I tried for the Earth Day Challenge. One was banana-oat, and the other a mocha, both recipes out of a book on superfood smoothies I recently got. I was a bit late leaving like always, so glad I had packed the truck the night before. I got into my parking garage at work with plenty of time to go in and visit quite with my fellow shiftmates until Yvonne showed up with my packet. I work a few blocks from the start/finish line so parking and restrooms at work is a great thing! Yvonne and her husband showed up and we all headed for the start line. We're ready as we're going to be! I had a bib for the A corral but decided to start back in C with Yvonne. I figured I'd probably race this one, but perhaps hanging with her for a bit would prevent me from going out too fast. A look back from the end of C corral.They did proper wave starts, holding each corral back until a gap was formed. We started off about 5 minutes after gun time. Things were off to a great start! The weather was great, I think it was around 50F at race start, clear sunny sky and not much wind. We stuck together about a half a mile and then I started to make my move. I had to do the bob-n-weave since I started back further, but this had the added bonus of passing hundreds, or thousands of folks. Always make you feel faster when your passing so many runners! They had a chip reader at the 5 mile mark and it recorded at that point I had passed 1035 runners and was passed by 0! I've completely given up on my phone and Endomondo for races, relinquished it to just MP3 duty, and rely on my old Garmin 205 for stats. I lapped it at the 5k mark... 23:31 (7:35 pace). Not bad considering the firs half mile was all over 8 minute pace. But could I keep it up? I hadn't trained hard much at all in a year or so, only within the last month doing a few miles per week at that pace. I lapped it again at 5mi and it showed I averaged 7:20 on that last 'lap'. It was soon after the 5 mile mark I had my only unexpected issues... started burping up stomach acid. Think my smoothies were a bit to close to race time perhaps, and also the faster pace made it more of a problem. I took some small sips from my hydration pack to wash it down and crossed my fingers. After a few minutes it never really came back again. And I ran the whole race without a feeling of hunger either, so overall not bad. Thus far the race was fairly flat with only minor grades. I took full advantage of all the slight downhills and tried to let loose. I never try to push hard on the uphills, but still held strong. Its really a fast course, and very barefoot friendly. If anyone is looking for a good barefoot race in Ohio I can highly recommend it, as well as most of the many downtown Columbus races.I hit 10k at 47 minutes. But I was really getting winded. Need to train for speed more, I hadn't breathed this hard since last year. Was still feeling good though. I had my music playing which was really helping it seemed. I actually got pretty frustrated trying to make playlists with Android and late the night before when I should have been heading for bed I was searching for apps to help me make a playlist. I actually found exactly what I was looking for quickly, and app that allows one to simply make a playlist from every file in a folder. Then I just made a temporary folder with the phone hooked to the computer, and dragged over all the songs I wanted. Glad that went smoothly. I had made a playlist of some high energy rock & metal, mostly Iced Earth and Halestorm. They just worked for me. And luckily my bluetooth connection didn't get drowned out among the hundreds of other bluetooth signals like it did at the Columbus Marathon. By now we were heading back into downtown. Long slight uphill up high street. I remember that being a bit tough at that point in the race in the past. However they changed things up a bit this year. After heading into downtown we veered back away, and downhill. I like that! Except that it was followed by another uphill. I really let loose on the downhill, as it was around the final mile or so, but I slowed down to even slower pace going back up. Seemed like there was another down and back up again, unless I'm making that up. My garmin actually let me down this time too, it cut out the last half mile through downtown. I hardly noticed though, at that point my pace was what it was... I was pretty much at 100% effort. The crowd was lining both sides, all sorts of people cheering...The final few seconds of the race with the finish line in sight.Yippie! Done at last!! I wonder if that gal in front of me would have been happier had she been barefoot?I'm not sure if it was the gal in yellow above, but there was a girl between the finish line and volunteers handing out medals that lost her lunch. After posing for a few terrible pics, I meandered down the recovery area and helped myself to the usual banana, water, and awesome cinnamon crunch bagel. Also downed a tub of greek yogurt.A little dirty but fine!Feet were fine but wow were they dirty this year. Typically they are almost clean after a long race. Going to take some scrubbing! Spent a good 15 minutes stretching out and then headed to the finish line party area they have setup at the Columbus Commons.The Byers Xtra Mile Finish Line Party. I stole that pic from Yvonne, hope she doesn't mind. Plus I stole the next one from the Cap Cities facebook page:Panoramic view of the Finish Line PartyThey had a band up on stage, tents all around of different things, a free Michelob Ultra for runners, and plenty of champagne to fill my glass several times! The best part of the race! Cheers!We had a blast. I almost PR'd but not quite. She did great considering she had a bad side stitch during the run, no sleep, and had been sick recently. The organization was great, volunteers a plenty (though I zoomed through every single station without stopping since I usually use a hydration pack) lots of crowd support, DJ's and live bands along the way, and very barefoot friendly. Ok, there may have been a few sections of rough pavement at a couple spots but overall a great barefoot course.I'll wrap this up with my stats...I'm on track to make a come back this year! 2 years ago when I PR'd in the half (a couple months after Cap City), I ran Cap City in 1:41 so I'm ahead of that this year, and with minimal training thus far.Yvonne, feel free to add anything if you'd like!