Sunday, May 06, 2012

My First Half Marathon

Well, it's Sunday and I'm laying on the couch because my legs scream at me when I tell them to move.  Most people would think that sounds like a horrible thing, but to me, it means that I completed a goal... it means that I was successful... it means that I ran my first half marathon.

We left work early on Friday and went up to Indianapolis.  We went and got lunch at a cute little sushi place and then went to the hotel.  J opened up the curtains and his reaction was "WHOA!"... we were at the Sheraton City Center Hotel and this was our view

Monument Circle
I took a nap while we waiting for J's friends to arrive from Minnesota and then when they got there, we headed out to pick up our race packets and get some dinner.

Entrance to the Expo

My race number... yikes!!

J and his friends with an Indy car

See YOU at the start line  :)
We ended up going back to the hotel room for a little while and then headed to Bella Vita Restaurant in Circle Center Mall for dinner.  It was really great and we were so hungry that I forgot to take a picture of dinner before we ate, but I do have this...

When we got back to the hotel, it was kind of warm in our room, even though we had turned the temp WAY down between check in and dinner.  J called down to the front desk and they said they'd have the engineer come and check it out.  The phone rang again a little while later and J talked to someone who said that the whole hotel was having issues and they had run out of fans.  They offered to bring us some ice cream and some cold water, which we did not really need since we had plenty of water in our room, and then they told us that they would be comping our room and our parking.

YEP, you heard (read?) me right... we did not pay for our room.  Talk about customer service.  We didn't even have to ask for it... they just did it for us.  I will absolutely be staying a Sheraton Hotels whenever I can from now on... they certainly left an impression on us!  One more picture before bed...

I woke up about a billion times on Friday night/Saturday morning... it felt like I would sleep for about 10 minutes and then wake up again.  NOT a good night sleep before race day.  6:00 am felt really early, but J and I went down and grabbed some breakfast and got ready and it was time to go.

Quick picture before we left.

J and his friends were a few corrals ahead of me, so they dropped me and went up closer to the start line where the fast people start  :)

The race started and I felt pretty good.  I knew that it was going to get hot so I made sure and got water all along the way.  My miles started a little slow, but nothing that was making me frustrated, and still a pace that would get me in well below my goal of finishing below 2:30:00.

Here's the course we ran...

Indy Motor Speedway was BY FAR my favorite part of the course.  I felt great on the track and I think that's where I ran my fastest miles.  As we exited the track, I started to get tired.  I had a couple gels so I had those at around the 15K mark (9.3 miles) and from there to 11 was when the sun started to come out and it got hot.  I thought about taking a break and walking for a little while, but I knew that if I stopped, I'd never get started again, so I just pressed on and kept running.  

I started to get nervous between miles 11 and 12, probably because that's the furthest I'd ever run before, and it was getting REALLY hot at that point.  I tried to eat my other gel, but I just wasn't feeling it so I only had about half of it.  I got to the last pit stop at mile 12 and knew the last mile was going to be rough.  I grabbed 2 cups of water, drank one and dumped one on my head.  I turned a corner, got to the top of the hill on the bridge over the White River and there it was... the finish line.

What a deception!!!  I was running, but the finish line was not getting any closer.  I tried to get to the outside of the road where there was some shade and I just kept running.  I saw the 13 mile marker and I was less than one minute away from finishing my first half marathon!  I crossed the finish line and started to walk and it was miserable  :)

I grabbed a bottle of water, a banana, a fruit snack, and a cookie and tried to get away from the crowd.  I finally got to the guys and I was exhausted, but felt great all at the same time!

Post race photo - minus one who was finished way before me

2 hours, 18 minutes and 18 seconds after I started, I was done... and now I have this

And after showers and packing, we headed back to B-Town where we went to Nick's (a local fav) where we celebrated with breaded pork tenderloin sandwiches and a toast...

Happy Mini Marathon/Cinco de Mayo!!!

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