On Sunday, I finished my 8th half marathon. And it was by far my favorite or at the very least second favorite half marathon so far. But let’s go back to Saturday, the night before the race!
We headed to Appleton around lunchtime on Saturday. I’d wanted to check out this gluten free store that closed at 2 and thought we weren’t going to make it. Turns out I would not have missed much. I have more gluten free options at a regular grocery store than this special store… Plus it was in a really weird building and they had tanning and a gym in adjoining rooms. Weird.
After this “store” we headed to the race expo to get our bibs. It worked out awesome because we got to meet up with my blogging buddy Allison from runningthroughredlights.com!!! It was so fun to finally meet a person I’ve only connected with online. We chated for awhile and then headed our separate ways to prep for the big run in the morning.
We did a little shopping and then headed to dinner. We tried out a new to us place called Gingerrootz. They had an awesome gluten free menu and were very knowledgable. We got the summer rolls to start and then I got an a.a.c roll and an asparagus maki roll. Both were very good. I got full pretty quick but managed to take one for the team and finish them since I figured four little sushi pieces might not cut it for a half marathon in the morning! The salt + carbines of sushi tasted just perfect. Might have to try this combo again sometime very soon!
After dinner, we stopped at my favorite ever grocery store and found some cookies and then headed to our hotel to get ready for an early bedtime. (After cookies of course). There happened to be some soccer tournament in town haring our hotel and man, kids are LOUD! They were literally running up and down the halls and then sitting outside our room to talk, loudly. Really, our room needs to be the place you do this? No, I don’t think so.
Once we finally got to sleep, we all slept pretty good which never happens before a race! We woke up early, but well rested so overall it wasn’t a total fail. We ate breakfast, got ready and headed to the start line about 6:15.
I haven’t ran hardly at all these past three months so I was not expecting much to be honest. I was hoping to finish but never thought I’d run the whole thing but, (spoiler alert: I did!). Sister and I ended up running the whole thing together and the time just flew by.
Normally around 8/9 miles I hit a point where I just want to give up but this time, I just was having so much fun and feeling really great! It was pretty cold this morning, like 34 when we started, but it felt really good to me! I seem to always have better times in colder weather so something about it must work for me.
Sister and I did a run .5 miles, walk 1 min routine the whole way through and did really well with it. We never had a mile slower than 10:40 and our fastest was 9:51! I think sister and I were both shocked by how speedy we were for this race. Well, speedy for us anyways
I think the distance was getting to sis by about 11 miles but she was a trooper and just kept on going. I’m pretty sure my perkiness was starting to get on her nerves but maybe that motivated her to run faster to bring that to an end?
Before the race, I’d been having troubles trying to remember the course even though I’ve run it in 2010 and 2011. But once I started running it, the memories started coming back. I could remember seeing sister and mom in years past at certain spectating spots and hills and turns, etc.
Another highlight of this race was that my dad and little pup came up just to watch us! It was my day’s first opportunity to see sister run even though he’s seen me a few times but I’m pretty sure croz stole the show lol! He’s just so darn cute and would be watching everyone going by him looking for us and then his little ears would perk up as soon as he saw us coming!
Around mile 12, we both ended up getting super hot and sweaty! The sun must have come ut or something? But that was short lived because the finish was not too far off!
We turned the final corner and I pointed out the finish to sister and then be both put the pedal to the medal, maybe a little too much ha! Somehow, we ended up crossing the finish line with a time of 2:15:33/34 (yes, sister beat me by 1 second). A 15 MINUTE PR for sister and a middle of the road finish for me too! Slower than my last two years here but that was not the goal this year
We walked over to the river in the park where we finish and took a few more pictures and then headed back to the hotel to shower and get ready for lunch.
After lunch and on the drive home, we of course had to stop at Dairy Queen for a little ice cream recovery fuel – I don’t know what it is about ice cream but it tastes so darn good after a long run!
I really feel sore now but during the run I didn’t feel my lack of training at all. It was so weird. I definitely don’t recommend this training plan but overtraining must have been my issue and a break was more what I needed than more running. Hopefully I can channel some of this excitement for running to transfer into my marathon training I am supposed to start soon…
I still am not sure if my half in three weeks will happen or not. I read something about them not having the necessary road permits? Guess I should check into that…
Another race is over but my passion for running seems to be restored. Bring on Disney! I’m already excited for Fox Cities in 2013!