WELL, I officially survived my half marathon and really, I more than survived - I think it did a great job!
Last week started with me staying home sick and let me tell you, when you are trying to hydrate, a stomach bug is the LAST thing you want. After a lot of sleeping on Tuesday, I felt much better on Wednesday and worked hard to get hydrated. I ended up only done 1 training run before the half, but it was a good one and I finished that on Wednesday feeling ready to go! I decided on that day that my ultimate goal was to PR, but I was going to approach the run with the plan to try and run a 2:10:00 race, which is a 9:55 min/mile pace.
On Friday, we went and picked up my packet and talked to one of the pace group leaders and I got this really handy temporary tattoo.
We went out for an awesome dinner with my parents and a couple of aunts and uncles (my uncles were also running in the race) and had a nice evening with everyone!
We woke up early (I hate mornings) and I ate some breakfast and we headed downtown. It was amazing how much smaller the races were than what I ran the first time. I knew it would be, but it was still a shock to me when it was so comfortable and not crowded in the corrals before the race. The race started at 8:00 am and as soon as the cannon sounded, we were OFF!
J and my parents had planned a walking route where they were able to see me 3 times in the race - around mile 3, 5 and 9 and then we planned where to meet after the race. The first four miles were down the same street - one long straight shot, and it wasn't as bad as I thought it would be. Mile 1 really sneaked up on me, and before I knew it, I saw J and my parents! I was actually feeling pretty good at 5K
I saw them again at 5 miles, and was still feeling really good. When I saw them at 9, I felt like I was starting to fade and get tired. Miles 9-13 were tough - there were some challenging hills and when I got to 9 and started to feel tired, I decided that I wanted to have a strong finish, but I was not going to try to kill myself to get to 2:10:00.
I finished in 2:13:55 - my first half was 2:18:18. Cutting those (approx) four and a half minutes from my time equates to running each mile about 21 second faster than I did the first time! I was really happy with the way I ran the race. I finished, I didn't walk or stop, I felt strong and I met my goal.
My (rounded) splits for the miles were:
Mile 1 = 10:31
Mile 2 = 10:03
Mile 3 = 9:57
Mile 4 = 9:55
Mile 5 = 9:46
Mile 6 = 9:55
Mile 7 = 10:00
Mile 8 = 10:06
Mile 9 = 10:15
Mile 10 = 10:37
Mile 11 = 10:40
Mile 12 = 10:53
Mile 13 = 10:11
13.1 = 2:13:55 = 10:13 minutes/mile
One of my uncles ran the 10K and the other ran the half, and they stuck around and waited for me when they were done. It was awesome to hear them cheer for me when I came into the baseball stadium (where the finish line was) and it kept me going for that last 0.1 mile! Here we are after the race...
I've been sore for the past couple days, but mostly just when I'm going down stairs/a hill and when I stand up after sitting for a long period of time. I'm pretty sure I'm not going to lose any toenails this time around (hooray) and the worst thing I encountered on this race were the blisters on my toes...
When I got done with my first half, I didn't feel like continuing to running - I was tired of it. This time, I don't really feel like that... I think I'll still want to get out and run. Not this week (I'm taking the week off), but maybe a couple times next week :) I'm also feeling good about being able to reach my 2:10:00 goal next time!