On Saturday I ran my third half marathon. It was exactly one year ago when I ran this race as my first half. Over the past year I learned a lot about running and how to train. My friend (and running buddy), Vicki, and I kicked up the training for this race. We had longer long runs and speedier speed work. I was out to PR. My last two half marathons were both 1:51:xx, I had to break that number! My goal was anything under 1:50:59, but my stretch goal was 1:48:00.
I woke up at 6:15 to eat my bowl of Wheaties with almond milk and a banana. This has been my newest go to pre-run meal. My energy lasts much longer! Andy was a trooper and got up to be the driver for Vicki & I. Before we left the house I, of course, took my before the run shot. I am an ambassador* for Wheaties, and I was so pumped to wear my awesome gear for the race!
We went to go get Vicki around 7:30. After we picked her up I realized I left my Garmin at home (worst nightmare for a runner!). We had just enough time to run back to our house, grab it, and make it to the starting line. Thankfully, Vicki was okay with getting to the race about ten minutes before the gun went off. We talked about our game plan and I told her I never wanted a pace slower than 8:30. We both knew we could handle being under that but it was windy so we knew at some point it would become head wind.
The first few miles flew by. We ran through old training routes from the Pig. We talked about how far we had come since that training! We were cruising, and hit the 3 mile marker at 24:04.
Miles 4-6 weren’t so bad. I was enjoying the scenic views of the city before we headed out for the dreaded Riverside out and back. It is fairly boring, and I knew from last year that we wouldn’t have much crowd support. We hit the 6 mile marker at 46:26. I knew if we kept that up a PR would happen. I had a few shout outs for my #TeamWheaties gear like, “Yea Wheaties,” and ” I should have had my Wheaties today!” Both of which made me smile 🙂
Miles 7-9 were just boring. We started eating our sports beans at mile 7. I am so glad I stuck with these for the race. While I do like GU (especially the peanut butter flavor), I think the beans are easier to eat and digest. Also, I wore the fuel belt so I didn’t have to stop at any water stations. I had the mentality of running this race full out, taking a water stop might of changed that! The turn around was at mile 8 (which was the official “I ran 700 miles this year mile!”), that is when we realized we were going to hit the wind head on.
And boy did the wind get us. Runners were more spread out at this point in the race. I think it was at mile 11 we tried catching up to some taller runners. We wanted to get behind people to help block the wind. You could see in our splits that the wind slowed us down. I was okay with it though since the first half of the race we pretty fast! We hit 12 and I looked at my Garmin and realized I was going to crush my goal time.
That is when I picked it up. My last mile was my fastest. It was hard but I pushed myself though it. I knew the end was near. Vicki told me to just go so I did. I knew my fan club, aka Andy and my mom, were there waiting for me. As soon as I came around the last stretch and saw them I instantly smiled. I crossed that finish line at 1:46:57. A 4:10 PR! I don’t think I had ever been that excited.
That PR put me at #9 in my age group (Vicki got #3! She is in the 19-24 AG, my favorite. 25-29 is tough!), 38th female, and 165 overall (1260 runners total).
I must say I think going to yoga for the past 20 days before the race really helped me. I felt loose and relaxed (minus the whole forgot my Garmin and must turn around fiasco). I was focused. I set a goal and I reached it. I have come so far in my running career. I can not wait to for my next race on Thanksgiving Day!
After the race I shared information with other runners about Wheaties. It was something different for me, normally after a race I grab a few snacks and head out. It was fun to talk to other runners and get the word out about a product I love.