Now that I’ve had a chance to recover (slightly), I wanted to share my experience and all that has been going on lately. I think I can consider myself a runner at this point. I know I don’t look like a runner but yesterday, I completed my second half marathon. I’ve completed twelve 5K races, and managed to clock 154 miles training for these two half marathons. I didn’t train as many days as I should have – I have kids, and jobs, and all the fun stuff that goes along with those things. I am so grateful for all who encourage me to keep going (especially on the days I’m not feeling it).
All the well wishes leading up to, the texts while I was in the thick of it as a few were tracking my progress on the race ap, and the check ins after – all very much appreciated!
A few months back I needed a goal, something to work toward on the daily. I decided to run another half, I searched online and found a race within a reasonable driving distance and enough time to train for. With every adventure comes new light. It was very cool to connect with my mom’s cousin through the powers of Facebook and share this experience together. I know she would’ve gotten a kick out of this, and I’m sure she was there in spirit taking it all in and cheering us both on.
After a restless night I woke up before my alarm went off. I could’ve gone back to sleep, and tried but I was too nervous that I would then sleep through my alarm – what can I say? It’s happened before :/
I popped some preventative Aleve, packed myself up, put on my gear, made sure I had everything I needed with me while I ate my protein bar. No coffee.
The race start was a mile and a half from my hotel. I joked at dinner the night before – how weird would it be if I took an uber to the race? I walked to the race, people were running to the race. Who are these super humans?! 13 miles isn’t enough?!
Anxiety is always high before the start, waiting. This was a large race, the biggest I’ve ever done – so many people. It took some time for my corral to be called and then that’s it. Let’s do this!
The few weeks leading up to the race I didn’t train nearly as much as I had hoped to, but no use in worrying about it now. We’re here.
I love the energy at the beginning, lots of people cheering, music, smiles everywhere. We ran through the streets of Philadelphia – the first two miles or so all I smelled was pizza and cheesesteak, great! 😐
I did complete a half marathon in April 2017, I pushed and pushed and would intermittently run, walk, run, walk. But yesterday, I did something I never did before. I ran 7 miles. Let me say it again, I ran 7 miles – without stopping to walk. A little after I hit the 7-mile mark was when the pain started to sink in. I knew exactly what pain…I was developing blisters on my feet. Still, I kept moving, run, walk, run, walk, modifying each step so it might hurt a little less. I kept that up for about two miles.
Around mile 9 I started walking, my hips were killing me. Determined not to give up I walked as fast as my legs could carry me. Between mile 11-12 I really felt like crying. The pain was pretty terrible – but was I going to tap out with two miles left? I kept going. I ran across the finish line with a time of 3:38. I’m happy I got through it, I’m happy I finished. I was completely bummed I didn’t beat my time from the last one (3:37). Next time!
Post-race, I walked the mile and a half back to my hotel. I’m sure you can imagine, me limping back wearing my race bib. My hips, legs, and feet were absolutely killing me. I packed up and got on the road. I don’t recommend this. I knew this from the last time but sometimes you forget important things. I drove over two hours back home. I didn’t anticipate not being able to move ☹ Let’s just say last night was a long one, pain in every direction.
Thankfully today I woke up a little more functional, limping still and blisters the size of Texas – but I’m no longer exhausted (well, from the race anyway). Every experience brings new light. I’ve learned some lessons and it’s time for new running shoes before the next one!
On the drive home, there was time to reflect between phone calls from some of my favorites checking in. I am so grateful, I did it. I am so grateful I have been humbled, this wasn’t an easy feat and I finished it, there are many times when I could have quit and not followed through. I am so grateful for the support I have. I am SO GRATEFUL this opportunity presented itself to me. Thank you for sharing this journey with me.
If you’re interested in reading about my first half marathon experience, you can read it here:
Always, sending love
PS my shirt was a hit…a few moms wanted pics, several said how much they loved it during the race. Thanks Karen!