Another one in the books! Today I completed my fourth half marathon since my first in November of 2009. It felt good to get some more bling. Why do we love the medals so? Is it just me? No. Good!
Once again, however, Rock N Roll disappoints. To no fault of their own I suppose. I just expected a cool Rock-N-Rollish medal. You know, shaped like a guitar or something. Oh well.
Julie and I made plans to meet at the convention center (start line) at 6:30 a.m. When I “rolled” up on the convention center, the first thing out of my mouth was, “Why is there nobody here?” I kept saying it over and over again. FINALLY, at 6:43, it occurred to me the race didn’t start until 8:00 a.m. not 7:00 a.m. Now I probably should have checked the start time myself, but needless to say Julie will NOT be trusted with start times again. Sorry Jule! Love ya! Oh well, at least we got a couple cool pics.
It was pretty cold outside this morning (not even 50 degrees). Considering yesterday it was almost 90, it seemed REALLY cold. Luckily I had brought a throw away sweatshirt. Why do I have these things in my closet in the first place? One Banana Republic cira 1995 sweatshirt now belongs to a new home. My work here is done.
After our start time mishap, Julie and I decided to head back to my hotel (the closer of the two) and use the restroom and take advantage of the free breakfast. It didn’t take long to pass the hour and we headed back to our corals.
I really wasn’t at all nervous to run this race. I knew I had it in me to finish, but I didn’t know how hard/easy it would be or what kind of time I was going to achieve. I knew a personal record was out of my reach so I hoped to finish in under 2:17:22 (the time of my very first half marathon). I also hoped the time would go by quickly and it would be pain free (no such luck).
I can’t tell you much about the race. It was pretty uneventful. I tossed my sweatshirt before the start line and I was wearing just a tank top. I was pretty chilly for the first two miles. My body definitely needed some warming up, including my ankles. Even after I had warmed up, my legs felt like lead. They were just downright tired legs. I’m sure it didn’t help that I spent all day Friday on my feet working the Spring Carnival. No matter the reason, I wasn’t feeling it.
I took a Honey Stinger at mile 5 and I think it messed with my belly. I really felt like I could throw up at any moment. The feeling was pretty consistent for 2 miles or so and then came and went through mile 10. Obviously it was nothing I couldn’t handle, but it was truly annoying. By mile 10, I was just done. Like I–want-this-to-be-over-now done. My hips were really hurting and my legs just felt tired. I know I keep saying that, but really my legs just felt like they didn’t want to move.
Despite my not feeling very well, the course was pretty beautiful. The course went through Highland Park, which is basically a multi-million dollar community of older, gorgeous homes. It seemed like something out of a movie. I loved the neighborhood feel of the race, but as an out-of-towner I would have preferred to see more of the city. Overall, it was a great course. There were some long gentle grades, but I’d call this a fast/flat course.
I was getting really close to the end so, I was looking for adrenaline to kick in. I hit a water station just before mile 11 and got cut off while grabbing my Cytomax. I had to stop to pick up my drink, which I never do. I walked that water station. I have NEVER walked during a race before and was feeling defeated. Something inside me told me it was the right thing to do. I walked and drank the Ctyomax and then drank a cup of water too. As soon as I finished drinking I started running again. I think I made the right decision.
Here is where my internal dialogue began. I had set a mini goal for myself (finish in less than 2:17:22) and that goal was still attainable. Yes it was going to be hard, but if I pushed myself I could do it. I pushed basically as hard as I could. I maintained a pretty quick pace (for me) until the end of the race. I was really giving it every thing I had to finish in 2:17 or under. At this point, literally every second counted. I rounded the last corner and saw the clock counting 2:26 (I knew I crossed the mat 10 minutes behind the clock start). Doing the calculations in my head, my run time was creeping up to that 2:17 mark. I sprinted… I peed….
I crossed that finish line at an 8:04 pace with a finishing time of 2:17:12.
Mile 1: 10:07
Mile 2: 10:38
Mile 3: 9:57
Mile 4: 10:10
Mile 5: 10:34 -----> Honey Stinger
Mile 6: 10:34
Mile 7: 10:48
Mile 8: 10:34
Mile 9: 10:26
Mile 10: 10:36 -----> Gu
Mile 11: 11:02 (walked water station)
Mile 12: 9:57
Mile 13: 9:43
Mile 13.25: 8:06
This wasn’t my fastest race, or my smartest (I was NOT consistent), but I’m still proud of setting a goal, attaining it and completing another race. My new PR is out there, it just might be a little further down the road.
Congratulations to Julie for setting her own PR (beating her Austin half time by 8 minutes). So proud of you Julie!