I figured it wasn’t the best sign when I woke with a stuffy nose and sore throat on Friday. Then I picked up my packet that afternoon in a drizzle that had been going on all day. Because my Internet was still on strike, I hadn’t been able to check Saturday’s weather. I called my husband, and he checked for me: 50-70% chance of rain during all race-related hours. I actually don’t mind running in the rain, but when it is combined with temps in the 40s and low-50s, I start to mind it a little.
Sure enough, it was raining when I got up at 3:15 Saturday morning to get ready for the Utah Valley Half Marathon. Luckily it stopped by the time I got to the bus and didn’t start up again until just as we started running. I met my cousin and her friend, and we rode one of the last buses to the start. We hit the potty lines and then stood by one of the fires until the race started (15 minutes late, but I’ll take that over the hour I waited for last year’s Hobble Creek Half)!
The race itself can be wrapped up in one word: HARD. I was sick, it was raining, I ate like CRAP on Friday (three Krispy Kreme donuts – what was I thinking??). My headband fell out and I had to run back and get it a few miles in. My ITB started hurting at mile 4, but I ran through it and it eased up a mile later. I never felt in the zone, like I could just keep going. At the halfway point, I wanted to quit. I had to keep telling myself to just keep running over and over.
The last three miles were tough. I knew I could make my sub-2 goal if I could remain steady, but I wasn’t sure I had it in me. I kept telling myself I could walk if I just made it to the viaduct that was near the end. When I hit the viaduct, it was less than a mile from the finish, so I made myself keep going. As I neared the finish, I saw the clock and knew I would make it.
Chip Time: 1:59:08 (9:05 pace)
Garmin Time: 1:59:12
Garmin Distance: 13.17
234/900 overall; 92/592 female; 30/150 age group
Mile 1 – 8:48
Mile 2 – 8:53
Mile 3 – 8:15
Mile 4 – 8:33
Mile 5 – 8:58
Mile 6 – 8:56
Mile 7 – 8:57
Mile 8 – 9:23
Mile 9 – 8:57
Mile 10 – 9:33
Mile 11 – 9:20
Mile 12 – 9:46
Mile 13 – 9:22
Mile .17 – 1:25 (8:27 pace)
I crossed the finish and a not long after my cousin finished. We hugged and then headed to the port-a-potties. My stomach was NOT happy. Even with three Imodiums in my system, it was letting me know how it felt.
At one point during the race, I decided I would never run anything longer than a 10K again. Yet today I am recommitted to my half in August and the St. George marathon in October. I am just taking what I learned from this experience and hope to make those races just a little bit better. I can’t control whether or not I get sick, but I’m going to do everything else I can (bye-bye Krispy Kremes) to make the most of those races.
In spite of Saturday’s half being the hardest race I have ever run (and not at all because of the course), there were a few awesome highlights:
- Alicia cheered me across the finish and we chatted after the race. I am so excited to run some of our long runs together as ,we both train for fall marathons. She is an awesome runner and a wonderful person. She is doing some amazing things for Train4Autism, so be sure to check out her blog!
- My leg didn’t hurt. It didn’t hurt before, during or after the race. Not sure what it was, but I’m glad it is gone.
- I had one tiny blister on my foot that was gone within 24 hours. I’m not sure if it was my ongoing effort to get rid of my calluses or the fact that my socks were sopping wet most of the race, but my feet were the happiest part of my body after this race!
- I got a post-race massage at the finish. The girl must have sensed how beat down I was because she didn’t just rub my legs but pretty much gave me a full-body rubdown and took nearly twice as long as those around me.
How was your weekend? I am trying to make the rounds and get caught up on the week of blogs I missed because of my angry Internet, but until then I hope you had great runs and races!!
RUN: I forgot my camera and my phone was in the car, so I didn't get any pictures. However, Alicia took a few of me as I finished (how awesome is she?), so I'll post them and the official race photos once I have them.