Thursday, November 20, 2014

First half in four years done!!

We did it!

13.1 miles. My first half I have ran since my last two around 2010 when the running bug hit me hard. 

This was my third half marathon and boy, getting back after having some time off for babies was challenging. Boy oh boy. Momma felt the burn!! :) And I got to run it with my friend Jess who traveled all the way from Ohio to run the race with me! She did amazing.

Jess and I at the finish line 
On Friday we had a yummy breakfast at Urban Farmhouse and then traveled to the expo to get our bibs and buy some gels and mittens. The expo was really set up great and we loved how easy it was to get in and out.

Expo time
However, it was cold outside of the stadium. Like really cold walking in and out.

We both had pizza at our house and then laid out our clothes before the race in the morning. We knew  Richmond's weather would be hovering around 25-26 degrees. Icy and not the best for running since it can take your body longer to heat up.

On race day I got up around 5:45 am and Ryder was up with me, which helped me not be so nervous. I slept great and was ready to fuel for the race. I had a bagel and coffee and then got a shower to get my muscles warm and got dressed.

We left and were thinking we would have 20 extra minutes to get race ready, but parking took longer than we thought it would. However, parking under the Omni Hotel was genius. They was flavored water, a fireplace and we might have kicked some guys out of the bathroom to use it. :)

As we got to the start of the race we realized that everyone was lining up around the 2:30 mark. So we just tried to get to the front of the pack. And boy did we have fun for the first four miles. We might have paced around random girls, yelled at elites, and listened to a lot of Taylor Swift (me).

Mile 1 was easy and fun. We got to see the elite marathoners on the parallel course beside us, including some amazing Kenyan runners and women who were holding their own with the boys.

Miles 2-4 were pretty and along broad and past the Arthur Ashe Center.

Miles 6-8 were hard, sunny and hilly racing through Bryan Park. The park was a curvy hilly and the sun was coming out so everything was hot and cold. I was sweating and my hand (gloveless now) were almost cramped and had a hard time grabbing water.

Miles 10-11 were dark. :) I laughed and joked with Jess after we raced and we both agreed that by this time we were cold and sore from the hills and it was just making yourself keep running.  My front of my hips were aching from the cold. I did find that pacing behind someone was so helpful. It just allowed me to run and not think.

At mile 11-13  Physically, I was feeling ok cardio-wise, but just standing on my feet and running for that long took it's toll.  As I raced down that stinking steep hill and saw my salvation at the end of the race. I was proud. Just so proud to have finished and trained for three months.

And to have run my first run since 2010!! Although my goal time was 2:05, I was happy to have finished around 2:11 since the weather just made it a very difficult race. So proud of Jess who negative split and got 2:02!!

And I didn't use my garmin! I always get so discouraged when I race and see my time go up, so this time I just ran by feel and tried to keep it a little under what I though I could do. I didn't want to puke when I finished this time.

A craft beer after the race at Capital Ale house with Jess and Brandon and the kids.  French fries and beer are the best post-race! 

Fun with my sweetie Ava after the race. 

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