At least, it felt that way. I haven't talked about it a ton on my blog because I wanted it today to be low-key with no pressure to reach a certain goal. I figured that if I didn't talk about or think about it, I could could keep my stress to a minimum. And guess what, it worked! Enough being cryptic - I ran my third half marathon today! That makes 3 half marathons in just under two months, and it was fantastic!
I actually didn't sign up for this race until after St Louis... I wanted to see how I felt after that race. I had figured if I felt good after St Louis I would sign up for the half, and if I felt terrible after I would run the 5k. Anyway, the race I ran today was the Veterans Half Marathon in Columbia City. Like I mentioned, they also offered a 5k plus a full marathon. This was a small city race, and I knew that going in. I wasn't expecting a whole lot of the race and I think that made the day that much more awesome for me. The "swag" was okay, not much in the bag mostly race handouts with a pen and a race cling sticker thing. The big "swag" was a fleece vest, I would have much preferred the full coat they had last year but what can ya do?
Because it was a small race the lines for the port-a-johns were not too bad. The race started promptly at 8:00 am. I wore my sweat shirt until the race started and then took it off right before getting to where Tommy was to be standing. Apparently he didn't see me running towards him until I threw the coat at him. So, I have no pictures of my start, not even my butt running away from him - BOO!
As far as mile, by mile, I don't have a ton of detail. The full and the half marathon were the same course for the first 13.1 miles, then they looped the other side of town. I hear the second half was hillier than the first - my half marathon coach said it was the hardest marathon course he's ever run! Because the course was mostly run in the country there weren't a whole lot of landmarks that I can go back and calculate where I was.
I know I felt pretty good until mile 5 or so, other than some pain in my metatarsal bones that I am attributing to my shoes - not to self, go to the running store again, UGH. I decided that when I got to mile 6 I would look at my time and consider walking a bit. At mile 6, I was ahead of a sub 2 time so I walked about a minute then started running again until I hit mile 7 and repeated that process until about the last 2-3 miles. I was really starting to feel the speed I was running at wearing on my body. I sort of fell apart those last 2-3 miles, I would love to someday be good enough to feel like I am running strong for a whole 13.1 miles - maybe that will be my goal for 2012?
I was so happy to see the finish line, I was exhausted but I gave it my all and pushed as hard as I could.... I knew I was going to PR, the question was whether I could manage my sub 2:00 that I missed in September. Funny how when I wasn't focused on it I was able to achieve my goal, I crossed the finish line and Tommy got this awesome picture of me, and my official time!
Yep, I SMASHED my sub 2:00 goal, and beat my previous PR by 5:19... HOLY CRAP. FIVE MINUTES? Wow, so proud of myself! Okay I am done "tooting my own horn" now, but seriously.. so happy!
- each mile was marked with awesome mile markers, I loved seeing this every mile!
- despite being a small race I found the crowd support to be awesome, I would say I didn't go more than half a mile without seeing a group of people out cheering (and this is out in the country)
- the spectators were MUCH more enthusiastic and cheering for everyone, I actually found their support to be better than the spectators at Fort 4 Fitness back in September
- PR smashing, need I say more?
- awesome volunteers and course support
- taking set walk breaks helped the last miles go faster and made me feel less guilty for taking them
- NO BATHROOM STOPS (those of you who have been following me for a while know how big this is)
- started feeling fatigued at mile 6
- ran out of fluids by mile 10
- my hands were SO swollen I could hardly bend my fingers, I normally swell but this was excessive
- was slightly hot in direct sun
- no landmarks to remember for trying to do a better recap of how the race went for me
- falling apart in the last 2-3 miles
- 2 dead animals on the road during the race
- looking at the 5k results and realizing if I had run that I would have taken first in my age group for sure. And the awards were awesome.
Overall - would I do it again/would I recommend it for others? ABSOLUTELY. I had a great time and I think it was a pretty course minus the few dead animals. They had a great set up and the volunteers and crowd support were awesome especially for a small race. I liked that it was more low key than the St Louis race (though I think there is a time for both types of races).
Race Specific Details
|78th overall out of 208 finishers (2 were DQ/DNF)|
Just a few pictures, for now, working on figuring out how to embed an album with a different site...
|My face is painful here!|
|Thumbs up for the camera!|
|Love to take these pics with my kiddos!|
|Eric, my half marathon "coach," finishing the marathon strong, he missed 1st place by only 24 seconds!|
|Obligatory Metal Picture|