Monday, May 6, 2013

Proud member of the sub-two club

I run like a girl.
This was my first half marathon and it was awesome.

I wanted to run it in under 2 hours. And I did: 1:53:06.

I started off fast like I knew I would. I ran the first mile in 7:53. I was just behind the front runners so I really had no choice but to run fast. I ran the second mile in 8:12. A little better, but still a bit fast. Mile three was run in 8:23. Mile four and five were run at a pace of 8:28. I was flying and it felt good. I had all kinds of energy, my legs felt strong, and I was barely breathing heavy. So I just kept running. My slowest pace for the entire race was mile 10 where I dropped to 9:06, but by mile 11, I was at 8:46.

The spectators along the course were fantastic. The held inspirational signs, they cheered, they clapped, they rattled those annoying cowbells. It helped a lot. And fellow runners were supportive as well with “nice race” and “good job” as I passed them. And I passed a lot of people, especially on the hills. Running cemetery hill made these hills seem like nothing.

The worst part was the water stations. I should have carried my sports mix, but I didn’t. The water station volunteers were not good at handing out water and when I tried to find some Powerade, I received a cup with barely a gulp in it. At mile 8, I had to walk to the back of the water table to find cups with Powerade in them and then gulped down four of them. Last thing I needed was for dehydration to set in at mile 12. Having lost at least 20 seconds searching for blue Powerade I quickly rejoined the race and caught up to the runners I had been running with. At mile 10 I ran around the people handing out water and went straight for the table. I grabbed two cups of Powerade and one cup of water, gulped them all down, then took off running. Much better and I only lost about 8 seconds.

Somewhere after mile 6 I lost track of the miles. What I thought was mile 7 was actually mile 8. Not a bad thing at all, but just very strange that I was so into running that I lost an entire mile.

At mile 12 I glanced at my Garmin, did a quick calculation, and realized I was way ahead of schedule. Even if I totally ran out of energy, I could still finish the race in under 2 hours. But I never ran out of energy. A surge of adrenalin kicked in around mile 6, and 8, and 12. When I turned the final corner and saw the finish line, I switched into high gear and gave it everything I had. Just a few feet from the finish line I saw a shadow come up on my right side. Determined not to let that shadow beat me, I went into overdrive. Unfortunately, the shadow belonged to a 34 year old male who beat me by 0.01 seconds.

Next thing I knew a woman was putting a finisher medal around my neck. The race was over.

My husband had been at the finish line with a video camera, but didn’t see me until it was too late. I had told him to start looking for me around 1:55, but most likely I’d be coming down the hill around 1:57. He did manage to see me half way down the hill, but the camera wasn’t on and all he got was my back side crossing the finish line. He did get some nice footage at mile 4 and 6 and a photographer at the finish line hopefully got a nice shot of me and shadowboy. I’ll know tomorrow when the photos are posted.

Today the quads are a little sore, but not bad at all. I'll probably go for a short run tomorrow and then start looking for another half to run. That was fun!


  1. Congrats!! I ran my first Half a few weeks ago and finished over 2hr, but my goal is to eventually join you in the sub-2hr group!

  2. I was very surprised by my time. Everything just felt right for running.