Here’s my race recap from todays Women’s Half Marathon in St. Pete.
I did it!!! I finished my first half marathon in 3:13:25. Yahoo!
I got up at 4 am and that was way to early for me. Then I meet with my running friends at 5 am and we drove to St. Pete together. Race start was at 7 am.
I started with the 3:00 pace group and it took us approx. 2 min before we crossed the actual start line. I kept tagging along with Jeff - our pacer - and felt fine. It was getting hot out there and I made sure to get water at every water stop. I don’t like the lemon-lime Gatorade and therefore did not grab that. I felt fine up until mile 6.8. First I started to feel a bit hungry and I took my gel at mile 7. During this I dropped my pace a bit (I still have not managed to run faster and eat a gel.) and a little bit afterwards my foot started to hurt. It was painful to step on it and that slowed me even more.
I managed to run until mile 8 but then I had to walk. I did not like this at all. I tried to run every now and then but never managed to go further then .1 or .2 miles. On the way out to Mirror Lake I saw my coach and that cheered me up a bit - and again I ran for a bit. I saw V. on my way to the Tropicana and waved/called her.
At one point during these walking-miles I remembered that Tessa said one day “Pain is temporary, pride is forever.” This quote carried me quite a bit and every time I wanted to slow down while walking I kept repeating in my head.
Just after the 11 mile mark I got to run in the air-conditioned Tropicana, which was nice. The floor was soft and I was able to run the whole loop in there. Passed some people. But as soon as I left it and the floor changed to asphalt I had to slow down and some of these people passed me again.
When I got to the 12 mile marker and saw that I might be able to do a 3:15 I started to run again. Very slowly and cautiously. Every step hurt like hell but I managed to get through it somehow. And, I thought about my running group and the competitive bunch we are - I really really wanted to cross the finish line running.
When I was less then .1 miles away from the finish line I heard Mandy calling me and that helped. I also saw my husband who had come to see me cross that line. Then I picked up the pace and crossed the finish line in 3:13:25 (chip time). I totally forgot to stop my Garmin. I was just happy to be able to stop running/walking. One of the medical people came to me and asked if I need help. I talked to her for a second before getting some water, kiss my husband and getting my medal.
Then I walked over to my coach and some other runners from my running club. They were waiting for me and I was glad to see them. We all had to laugh when I said that I managed to run the last 1.1 miles because of the competitiveness. :) Then I was able to grab some food and orange gatorade.
Unfortunately I missed a lot of the other runners (they already left or I did not see them with all these people around). I wished I would have been able to see some of them cross the finish line.
Thanks to my coach for training me. Thanks to my running buddies for keeping me going when I just wanted to stop. Thanks for all the tips and help I got. Thanks for all the encouragement I received and for all the comments here. I really appreciate it and I would not have come as far as I did without it.
Now - over 8 hours after the race - my feet still hurt. My leg muscles are sore and I try to move as less as possible. I hope that will go away really soon. Despite the soreness/pain I feel know I can’t wait to run again. It does sound a bit crazy, right?
And of course I learned a few things today:
- I can finish it even if it is tough and I think I can’t.
- I still have to work on my pre-race (aka breakfast) and race nutrition.
- I have to train eating and running a fast pace at the same time.
- I really need new shoes - at some point I thought that the soles of my shoes felt like bricks and I missed all the cushioning.
- I could not have done it without all the encouragement/help I got.
chip time 3:13:25
overall place 3458 / 3901 - gender place 3346 / 3901 - division place 393 / 440
avg pace 14:42 - avg moving pace 14:22
splits: 13:44 - 13:48 - 13:31 - 13:49 - 13:43 - 13:47 - 13:48 - 14:48 - 16:03 - 17:26 - 16:12 - 15:46 - 14:58 - 13:39 (0.21 mi)