The race had a 10am start time which was also awesome. I slept in, got some studying done and then moseyed up the hill to the start.
All the fixings
The Course: In a sentence, it was a beautiful course with rolling hills through farmland. Today was just perfect and I was just happy and grateful to be out running. I drove the course yesterday (on an equally gorgeous day) and I took some pictures:
Lakes and Leaves
Hill at Mile 6
The other side of November in New England
The last of Fall Foliage
The Run: I switched my Garmin to record laps, so this is how my pacing broke down:Mile 1 – 8:44 Mile 2 – 8:47 Mile 3 – 8:45 Mile 4 – 8:49 Mile 5 – 8:56 Mile 6 – 9:00 Mile 7 – 9:07 <– 2 consecutive hills Mile 8 – 9:29 <– biggest hill on the course Mile 9 – 8:56 Mile 10 – 9:27 <– 3 small hills in a row Mile 11 – 9:01 Mile 12 – 9:22 Mile 13 – 9:24 <– last hill .2 (according to Garmin) – 9:19 <– and then finished on a HILL. No joke! How cruel!
Total time: 1:59:54 Average Pace: 9:05 Division Place: 43/138 Overall Place: 319/979
I actually finished 10 seconds behind the one ‘lucky’ guy. Turns out he’s a good pacer!
The Feel: Even though the hills slowed me down, I surprised myself today. I ran a solid half marathon the week after a full marathon. Dang! I would have never been able to do that a year ago. Also, I handled the hills fairly well, something I used to dread, and kept a decent pace. I feel myself getting stronger and it’s a wonderful thing.
During the run, when I wasn’t thinking about my upcoming exam, I was thinking about how far I have come as a runner. Since my first half marathon 2 1/2 years ago, I have learned so much about my limitations as well as, and more importantly, my ABILITY. I can’t wait to see what 2012 brings for running and I look forward to setting more goals and enjoying a sport I’ve grown to love.
Have you ever truly surprised yourself? Have you ever done something you didn’t think you could?
(*Edited to add: My knee! You thoughtful people who asked, my knee feels GREAT! It didn’t bother me once today during the race, which may be in part due to the excessive icing and stretching I’ve done this week So far, so good…)