I did it! I finally ran a half marathon!
Leading up to the race, I received numerous texts asking if I was ready and wishing me luck. Normally, I appreciate nice thoughts but this occasion was different. I was doing everything I could to not even think about the race.
Micaela and I prepared for the race by eating a carb loaded dinner the night before the race. Both Micaela and I struggled ordering. We knew we needed carbs before the race for energy and protein after the race to rebuild muscle but we weren’t sure about protein before the run. We are clearly amateurs. I played it safe and got both.
We arrived at the race site bright and early. I became suddenly nervous as I observed all the other participants. They all looked so professional.
My bad habit is unconsciously biting my cheeks when I nervous or concentrating. I was clearly nervous in this picture above.
The race started downhill and extra fast. I was overwhelmed by the little room I had to move (I knew I would be). Luckily, the full marathon and 10k runners split at about 1 mile, giving me a little room to breathe.
I knew going into the race pacing myself would be my biggest struggle. From the get go, I strategically began following a girl who seemed to know what she was doing, have a steady pace, and running at about my pace. At the halfway point, the girl realized she was running the half marathon course and not the full marathon course she intended. She freaked out and left me in her dust. I suddenly felt slow knowing I was following a marathoner pace.
The second half of the race was not quite ideal since it was against the wind. However, I was feeling good until about mile 9 when my body started to feel fatigued and feet decided they weren’t happy. It suddenly got worse (way worse) right before mile 12. I felt a prick in my thigh and looked down to see a mark. I was stung! I immediately FREAKED out. All my life I have been told I am allergic to bee stings. Luckily, I have not been stung since I was little so had no idea what my reaction would be if I hadn’t grown out of the allergy all together. My immediately thought, “I just ran 12 miles and feel like crap and it will all go to waste if I can’t finish.”
The remainder of the race, I stopped frequently to check out the sting. In addition, some genius thought the last mile should be up a crazy hill. Needless to say, my time slowed way down.
I finished! 1 hours 57 min and 2 sec!
Did I mention we were surprised by my cousin who drove 6 hours to cheer us on. She even made a sign! (If you look closely you can see little plastic cows on the bottom left and top right corner) I am positive looking for her amongst the spectators made the race go by faster if that is possible.
* I should also give you follow-up on the sting. I must have grown out my allergy because I had no major reaction. Just a swollen area around the sting for a couple of days. I survived the race and the sting.