So the day has come and gone-it has been about a week, and a crazy week-and the race is over! Now I am in full prep for the full 26.2, yikes!
The half went great. We got there a little late and the race had started. I started off with the really slow ones and walkers, which was actually great because I didn’t feel pressured to shoot out of the starting line at a gait that would leave me crippled (at best) later in the day. Instead, I took my time.
I enjoyed the run a lot. I didn’t get overwhelmed or hit that wall. I had ditched my watch at home and decided that from now on, running is for pleasure, which means not caring if it took 10 or 12 minutes per mile. I stopped at mile 4 to use the portable potty-yikes!-which cost me about 10 minutes - the line was so long, but when you gotta go, well, you know!
We ran down to the Queen Mary and then around the lighthouse on the little island. Then we headed up the beach on the sidewalk for about 4 miles. This was the hardest part of the trek. We started that at mile 6, after I’d been running for over an hour. Sun was rising, fog burning off, and it was hot. Plus there were no people cheering along this stretch (Well, very few), so it was just us and the pounding of hundreds of feet.
We then turned and headed back. People began emerging on the streets, screaming encouragements like, “Looking strong!” and, “What an accomplishment!” This is my favorite part of racing: People looking on and cheering for me to get there, to cross that line.
I did, and my two daughters and husband were there screaming my name! (Well, my youngest was asleep in her stroller, but I can pretend that she saw me and understood!)
I made one mistake this run. I didn’t eat immediately finishing, and then we left and drove half an hour home, and I took a shower, and then it hit me. My body was done, and I could barely keep myself awake. I fell into bed dripping wet and naked, and not in a cute way. I wondered for a minute if I were dying! I told my husband to make me a sandwich, and he did, and slowly I began to gain composure. For a while I had a difficult time opening my eyes.
So, my moral of this race (and the last half marathon I ran, because it happened then too!) is that as soon as you cross that line, whether you want to eat or not (and most likely after running thirteen miles you won’t!) grab the bagel and chow down. Do so before half an hour has passed so your blood sugar doesn’t plummet like mine did! I will never, ever wait so long to eat again. I felt great crossing that line; it was what I did afterwards that really hurt me in that race.
So, now I begin preparations for 26.2 in February! I have run three times since the race and will run again in the morning, my first ‘longer’ one since the race. I plan to do about 8 miles, but we will see. I’m still a bit sore-my feet especially-and don’t want to push it. So, I will do what I can, and in about three months I hope to say that i have finished a full marathon! Here is one more picture of my daughter and me after the run.