Damn Pirate!! That's outstanding progression!! You must be built for running. I'm jealous.
I did my 3rd ever 1/2 Marathon on Sunday (Vancouver 1/2). I had been training pretty hard for this one. I was really hoping to pull off my first sub 2 hour - 1/2 Marathon. My training showed I was right there. I did a couple 21k training runs - not pushing excessively - and was right around 2:04 for both. But a couple factors (out of my control) ended up being too challenging for me.
The Vancouver race looked to be arranged quite well. The setup was good, and the organizers had things well in hand. But there was a significant delay at the start of the 1/2. We were supposed to start at 7 am sharp - but didn't get going until about 7:20. That caused a lot of crowding in the correls - and I noticed a lot of folks from correls behind had mixed up in ours. The start was basically a 3 to 4k downhill section - where I planned to get a nice pace, for a solid first half. But with the excessive crowding, and different speed runners (not to mention the big delay in starting), The downhill section didn't go as well as I hoped. From that point on, the race went a lot better. I actually clocked a decent first half - and realized I still on pace for a close 2 hour. But the heat started to cook. I was training in light snow and very chilly temps right up until 1.5 weeks prior. The heat in Vancouver (especially that day) was well above what I was used too (around 10 to 15 degrees C higher). So by the second half of the run, I was really begining to overheat. I carry my own hydration - but I ended up having to use every water station on the second half. Just to dump the water over my head. I saw my time slipping on the second half, and knew I wasn't going to get the sub 2 hour. So I just did the best I could at that point - and managed a 2:09. I was disappointed was that, but there was not much I could do about it. Again, crowding and temperature are factors out of my control. My trainer and I have already discussed how to help with the temperture thing for next time. I'll do some treadmill work with thicker sweatpants, and a hoody on. See if I can build up my heat tolerance. That could get interesting - lol.
Otherwise - it was a fun run and amazing location. I hate the local hockey team with a passion, but Vancouver is easily one of the most beautiful cities around!!