I wish I could bottle it up: the feelings, both physically and mentally, the emotions, the love, the whole thing. Running my first half marathon was one of THE BEST experiences of.my.life. I LOVED IT. It was such an amazing feeling of accomplishment. I am so thankful (especially during this “”thankful time of year”) for my body and its capabilities, my mind, my City, my friends, my family, and especially my “superfans.” I couldn’t even begin to recap the race mile by mile. In all honesty, it just flew by in a wonderful world wind. So much so, that I wonder if I got the “runner’s high” (that I even have a hard time believing!). I am truly addicted. I can describe certain moments, which I will, but the whole thing sorta blurred together, almost like my wedding, which I can slightly compare the depression after it to that of after the half. Anyway, first things first: THE START…
Husband drove me as far as he could down 22nd Street (he then booked it home to grab my Garmin to meet me with which I realized I forgot, but subsequently decided not to use) and I then walked the rest of the way (only a few short blocks) to the start. I then searched for the porta-potties and began the line-waiting process. As I waited, I bumped into a friend in line (very funny because as you can imagine, there are a LOT of people there) and fixed all my “gear”…think re-tied shoelaces, fixed bib, set up i-pod, etc. I crossed the start line at 7:18 (almost eighteen minutes after the first starters). NOW, here are some things that were memorable along the race route (you can find the map here)…
The first few miles were a blur. I was getting into my rhythm and preparing to see Husband shortly into the race. I saw Him and Oscar at Headhouse Square at the beginning of mile 4. Oscar was absolutely adorable and was being SUCH a good boy! Husband’s smiling face was such a welcomed site and he had made an AWESOME sign that CRACKED me up:
I was so thankful. I am so blessed.
The race continued on and I knew that I would be seeing my parents and aunt around mile 5 so that mile went by SOOOO quickly. Well, unfortunately I missed them. Or they missed me. UGH. But either way, it sucked. I was SO disappointed. Here are the posters they had made me (SUPER cute, MOM!):
LOVE THEM. So, it sucked to miss them, but it was exciting to anticipate it! BUT, guess who was there to save the moment; as I turned the corner onto Walnut Street, there were Shiya and Scott! What great friends! I crossed the road safely and hugged them both. I then traveled along on my merry way.
I used several distractions throughout the race that I found helpful (and odd)…
– Whenever I felt like I was “going too hard” and needed a lil’ rest, I’d get my phone out of my (AMAZING) fitness belt (even better than the SpiBelt, I think) and texted my fam to update them on my coordinates 😉 hehe. Seriously, I do have an extreme knack for multi-tasking. 🙂 Really.
-I did mathematical computations of “race times” in my head- I know-I’m a dork.
Anyway, back to the race…
The race was going smoothly, even through those crazy hilly miles by Drexel. I use lifesavers as “fuel”- I dunno- might seem weird but I really like sucking on them and getting a slow stream of sugar directly into my blood…slow is the key word. I like that. I can’t do the Gu thing. Too much too fast for me. Anyway, I ate one at miles 8, 10 and 12. I made sure to eat them when I knew a water stop was approaching, as they make me thirsty.
OK, so then came “that dreaded hill…” you know, the one by Centennial Hall in Fairmount? Between miles 9 and 10. Fun. I knew Husband would be waiting at the top of the hill- he planned it like that (how awesome, right). So I PUSHED. And there they were! My two fave boys! Here are some pics he took of me- we didn’t get any of them! Boo!
Carried me through to the finish line. I breeeezed down the hill with the thought that I could “make up some time” 🙂 And then, out of nowhere came mile 12. But, my friends, I tell you, this was NOT easy. I really REALLY had to push through this last 1 mile and change. It was SO hard and took all of my mental and physical stores. I dug deep and pulled it out. But the urge to walk was SOOOO strong. I fought it though, finishing strong, at 2 hours, 2 minutes and 25 seconds. WOOT! I felt amazing. I still feel amazing.
As I crossed the finish line (and collapsed into a heap of exhaustion and wonderful emotion), the marathon winner was crossing! 2:21 something for him, Crazy! Anyway, it was seriously one of my top five favorite days ever. Thanks for all your support! Especially my superfans 😉 I am so lucky. So blessed. Now….which race will I do next ?!?! Just kidding! Well, not really!