Sunday, December 12, 2010

Decker Challenge Race Recap

Today I ran the Decker Challenge Half Marathon.  I woke up this morning VERY anxious.  I think I was mostly nervous because I had no idea where I was going, what parking was going to be like, if there would be enough bathrooms, or how long I'd have to wait out in the cold.  Let's just say I don't thrive in unknown situations.  In order to put my mind at ease, George told me he would drive me down and drop me off and then he and the kids would eat breakfast while I ran and meet me at the finish line.  It helped, but I was still anxious. 

We arrived shortly before the full Marathon began.  George dropped me at the door of the HUGE Expo Center.  I later realized the location of the marathon (Travis County Expo Center) is the county fairgrounds.  When he dropped me off, I walked into the hustle and bustle of lots of runners stretching and getting ready for their run in their own personal way.

I hopped right in line for the bathroom.  The whole line only took about 10 minutes and the bonus was I was inside in a nice 70 degree building.  Soon the kids and George came in to take my coat, wish me well, and send me on my way.  I probably only waited another 10 minutes before it was time for us to walk out and line up.

We lined up; there were no corrals so I just tried to stay near the back.  I figured I'd be running between a 10:30 and 10:40 pace so let's face it, I belonged in the back.  It took me only 30 seconds to cross the mat after the gun.  I felt really good right from the beginning.  I was running 10:17 and thought to myself, wouldn't it be nice if I could hold this pace; I couldn't.  Soon my pace dropped to 10:30 and I thought again, wouldn't it be nice if I could hold this pace; I couldn't. 

You see there is a reason this is called Decker CHALLENGE.  The challenge isn't the 13.1 miles.  The challenge is the hills. Every time I got into a good grove, hitting a nice pace, I'd be smacked in the face with another hill.  I wish I could tell you what the hills were like because they never translate very well when you take pictures of them.  Put it this way; I started calculating and the longest hill was 1 FULL mile.  Now granted these hills are not straight up but one mile of a LONG STEADY climb is tough.  That full mile came between miles 10 and 11 and then the hills didn't quit until about 12.5 miles.  By then I was, of course, tired and just trying to maintain a decent pace. 

Decker Challenge Half Marathon
Mile 1: 10:39
Mile 2: 11:00
Mile 3:  10:44
Mile 4:  10:43
Mile 5:  10:31
Mile 6:  10:36
Mile 7:  10:16
Mile 8:  10:19
Mile 9:  10:40
Mile 10:  11:04
Mile 11:  11:02
Mile 12: 11:08
Mile 13: 10:34
Mile 13.25:  1:47 (8:57 mile) The course was long; believe me I hugged every corner!
Total: 2:21:10
Average: 10:41

I'm not disappointed in my time.  I knew I wouldn't set a PR before it even started.  There were MANY times throughout the course when I thought about what I have been through to arrive at today.  Less than 6 months ago I fractured my shoulder and wrist.  I was bed ridden until August.  I didn't start working out again until September and even then I was only able to do the elliptical.  My 1/2 marathon training got put on hold for 2 weeks.  Once because my doctor asked me to take a week off and once due to a kidney stone and subsequent surgery.  I kept reminding myself that I have endured a LOT.  I am proud of myself because I never gave up!  I never once said I wouldn't be able to do the half.  I just kept saying I'd try.  If none of this would have happened I most definitely would have had a different time.  But today I can say I'm extremely proud of 2 hours and 21 minutes. 

This course, and my life, threw me a few punches.  Like I promised, I never gave up and did my best until that last step across the finish line. 

Thank you to the love and support from everyone, especially George and my kiddos.  I love you!!!

We're ALL napped, fed and off to ride the North Pole Flyer.


Anonymous said...

Good for you!!!
This story actually brought tears to my eyes...happy, proud tears!

Anonymous said...

You did great!!!

Anonymous said...

Of course you didn't give up. You just don't DO that. What a wonderful job! YOU DID IT! xoxo G.

Andrew said...

Awesome job Boo!! I'm so proud of you. I would've been with George and the kids eating breakfast waiting for you! LOL!

Anonymous said...

You did great!!!

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