SO this past weekend I ran my very first race...ok so not my VERY first. I ran cross country my sophomore year in high school but that was like ten years ago! I haven't raced since that year, though I have threatened to several times.
My very good friend Christina has talked me into a 1/2 marathon. In theory, this is awesome and fabulous! In reality, it scares the crap out of me! How am I going to be able to RUN 13.1 miles?! "Easy" she says - "we'll train"! You will have noticed that I have tracked my running since that fateful day that she asked.
October 23rd was our 8 mile day. Christina's fiance, (also a) J, and his company were running a 5k and needed participants. She asked me and I agreed. We still had to get the first 5 miles in for the day though.
We (Christina, her J and I) met bright and early on Saturday morning and drove to the race site. we were well over an hour early to make sure we had plenty of time to run the 5 miles.
And time we had! We ran the five miles mostly in the dark -- yeah it was that early lol. I felt good...our pace was a little sporadic but that's ok, the three of us were tired from lack of sleep the night before. We finished and had THIRTY minutes to stand around and wait for the race to start. ICK! My legs were starting to feel heavy and my energy was dwindling. How would I SURVIVE?!
We met up with people from J's company and some of his family who were joining. I tried to keep moving and not remain stationary. At last it was race time!
I felt pretty good for the first 1.5 miles -- although I had Thunder Foot running right in my ear. You know that person, the one that runs so LOUDLY you think they are coming to get you and stomp you in the ground. Luckily he wasn't able to keep our pace by 1.5 miles.
We hit the 2 mile mark, and though I was feeling winded and my quadriceps hated me, I was still feeling good. Then we hit 2.5 and I wanted to burst into tears! I was tired, my legs hurt and I needed something to drink in a terrible kind of way. Christina and her fiance were trying to be so supportive and I love them for that but I HAD to slow down a little. I was also mad at myself -- I know I had a million reasons why this felt hard but I feel I'm in pretty good shape and, still, I had to slow down.
They finished a whole 11 seconds in front of me -- it would have been more but I dug deep and strided out the last tenth of a mile.
For the 8.13 miles we ran that morning, we timed 1 hour 18 minutes, averaging JUST UNDER 10 minute miles. I think I would have felt a lot better had we not had the break for 30 minutes. For the race, I finished 9th in my age group and 28th of 165 female runners.
In two weeks we are doing something similar to this again -- 6 miles and then a 5K. Hopefully we can time it a little better so the waiting time isn't so long.