Saturday, January 21, 2012

Oh Hello Again - Running the Race

Hello again.  It has officially been 98 + 14 days since my last post.  Wedding planning and school did a fine job of taking every last bit of energy I had.  You probably would not have enjoyed my blogs had I attempted to write them.  They would have sounded something like this: Wedding planning - hard; Vendors - pain; Running - not enough; Spirituality - not enough; Becoming a house wife - sparse; School - how much longer again?  

Alright now if you're a fan of brief summaries you can stop there.  However, if you'd like to know a few more details and a retrospective view of these things keep going.  Oh how looking back on everything sure does put it all into perspective.  I'll devote this post to what first inspired me to start blogging: Running. 

I've done it!  I've completed my first half marathon.  Whew.  I guess I should start by thanking my running buddy Jared.  We started out running every Tuesday evening, but as soon as my semester started up realized this was not going to work.  I was tired when I finally got home and not terribly motivated.  We switched it to Saturday/Sunday morning.  This was a great move.  I was available more for these runs and it started to get me acclimated to running in colder weather.  

Okay I guess this is a good time to expand on Jared's patience with me.  I have this terrible tendency of not following through on plans all the time.  There were a couple of late Friday nights or early Saturday mornings where I would send an "ooo I'm tired" or "oops I forgot to tell you I was going to Houston this weekend" or "oh I just had my bachelorette party and am in no condition to run" text.  For a lot of people this would get old immidiately.  I'm not proud of this characteristic of mine.  It's something that having a running buddy has really brought to my attention, and something I'm really trying to work on.  Well, Jared was perfectly nice about it every time.  Instead of just dropping me to run by myself he would just respond with an "okay no problem!  Try and run X amount of miles sometime this week!"  I am so grateful for this.  And then later in the week he would text again asking how my run went.  Still keeping me accountable without making me feel like a complete jerk for cancelling.  

Alright so I'm cruising.  We are right on schedule with my training about to start the longer runs (9-10 miles) and start pushing the pace.  Or not.  Instead I go and injure myself playing basketball.  That's right Jason; I'm gonna put it out there, it was not Jason's fault.  I mean he did steal the basketball away from me in an unnecessarily rough manner, but it was my pride that then led me to chase after him and try to get the ball back.  In the end it resulted in a huge ankle and about a 3 week recovery time.

    So here I was, a month and 14 days out from running my first marathon unable to run.  I was bummed to say the least.  I think Jared sent me a text after he saw the photo saying something along the lines of "soooo you want to cancel our run this weekend?"  Umm yes perhaps.  Oh side note, this was also about two weeks out from my bachelorette party.  My second top concern after "oh no I can't run!" was "oh no what if I can't wear heels!"  It's the important things in life really.  

About two weeks to go before the marathon I start trying to push up my miles again.  I had gotten stuck on a comfortable 4 mile run.  Not good news when that is only 1/3 of the race.  I ran 6 miles while we were in Houston and another 6 miles in Denton.  On Thanksgiving morning, one week and three days before the race I decided that if I was going to do this I had better get in at least one long run.  So I strapped on my shoes and put on my nifty gift Jason had given me for my birthday.  It's a training watch with GPS and heart rate monitor.  It lets me know how far I've gone and my current pace.  I love it!

I had already mapped out my run so I knew exactly where my destination point was before I would allow myself to turn around.  In short, I ran 12 miles at a not so great pace, but I had done it!  I decided to save that extra 1.1 miles for race day.  I knew I was going to at least survive the race and that was all I wanted at this point.

Okay so race day arrives.  The night before I do everything I'm supposed to.  I have a bridal shower (relaxation and lots of gifts is always necessary before a race).  I loaded up on the carbs and water for dinner.  I went to bed at a decent hour and set my alarm with enough time to meet Jared at his apartment the next morning.  I was set.  

I get a text message in the middle of the night.  "Whyyy is someone texting me in the middle of the night!"  I figure I had better check it in case there's an emergency.  Oh wait it's not the middle of the night!  I missed my alarm!  It's Jared asking me where I am.  

Side note:  My first semester in college I slept through my calculus final exam.  It was the worst feeling ever to wake up and realize you've missed something very important.  This approximates how bad I felt texting Jared "Oh I just got up"

Okay so I get ready faster than I thought possible.  Original plan:  Eat half a Cliff bar and a banana; dink some gateorade; bring a water bottle.  Instead, I scarf down a Cliff bar and run outside to meet Jared.  As usual he doesn't even show a hint of being annoyed.  I mean come on!  I'm completely making this a stressful morning, when all a person really wants to do is focus on the race ahead.  Again, I'm so grateful for his patience.  

On top of all of this the weather is a mess.  Cold cold cold, windy and rainy.  Oh also I needed to use the rest room but by the time we got there we didn't have time to stop at one of the long lined port-a-potties.  Which is probably for the best because they are gross...oh except that then I had to run 13.1 miles needing to pee.  That was not so great.  Motivation?

So we're off.  I start out at a good pace, I'm surprisingly happy with how I'm feeling, except for the need to go to the bathroom.  Mile 1 done, 2 done, at about mile 3 I give up on trying to avoid puddles, mile 4 done, mile 5-6 check; mile 7 (ish?) oh look this is where the hills start; mile 8 oh my gosh I do not want to do this anymore, not because i'm tired now but because I know I have 5 more to go.  Mile 9 - thank goodness Jared is here.  I feel like dying and he is high fiving the crown, commenting on the signs, having a great time.  Oh and then one of the people in the crowd gave him a beer.  That was pretty awesome.  

Mile 10 ok I can do this, anytime now I'm going to see Jason.  We agreed that he would be somewhere along mile 10...Mile 11-where the F is Jason? Maybe I missed him, I'm going to feel bad if he was out there an I missed him.  That sucks.  Mile 11.5 - JASON!  Holding a sign for me :)  I give him a high five.  I'm feeling awesome!  2 more miles to go!  This is cake.  

Mile 13.1!  I did it!!  I may have felt like crying a little.  Best feeling ever.  Until you realize it's still cold and rainy and you are no longer running.  Also until you realize you still need to pee and the line is forever long.  I get through the line and find my way to Jason in the car.  It takes me at least the rest of the day before I start to feel warm again.  But it was worth it!

In the end I ran it in 2 hours and 52 seconds.  My orignal goal was 1 hour and 45 mins for my first half.  Following my injury that time was revised to 2 hours.  So I was a little over my revised goal, but considering the weather conditions and the need to go to the bathroom the whole race, I was pretty happy with the final result.  I'm excited to improve with the more races I do.  It's a great feeling to get the first one out of the way! 

Next month I'm doing a 15K with Jared called the Hot Chocolate 15K.  Yay for free Ghirardelli chocolate!  Then in April Jason and the Wagner's and I are all going to do Warrior Dash!  So excited!  

Also glad to get this first post out of the way.  Still to come: update on wedding planning and execution; becoming a house wife; spirituality; and more! 

1 comment:

  1. I am still super impressed you ran a half! Do you have a 13.1 sticker? Cause you should. Props to Jared for being such a great running partner!

    Also, must you post we are going to do the warrior dash? Now I'll feel bad when I cop out. :P