Thursday, November 3, 2011

Half Marathon Completed!

One of my goals on my 30 before 30 list was to complete a half marathon.  I knew if I didn't run in the Mankato Marathon on October 22, I probably wouldn't be able to complete that goal before I turn 30 in March.  So, I began training at the beginning of August, and man, it was a little rough!  The furthest I had ever run was a 10k, so it was pretty crazy to me that about midway in, my "short" runs were 5 miles.

One of the benefits of my hubby working from home while I stay at home, is that I could go out for my shorter runs when the baby was asleep either for her morning nap or her afternoon nap.  It mostly worked out; however, there were a couple of times when I'd get home and Jeff would say, "She woke up as soon as you left and didn't stop crying the entire time!" But, he was so supportive and would give it a try the next time with no hesitation.

I've always used the Nike+ ipod device when training for my 10k runs, but this time, I didn't start using it until about mid-September.  I didn't want to get too caught up (and thence, discouraged) in my times, especially at the beginning. Plus, I knew that it can be difficult to get it calibrated EXACTLY.  So, I tried not to be too hard on myself when I discovered I was running only about 11 minute miles on my long runs (the 8+ milers).  I told myself "Hey. I just had a baby not that long ago! Just run so that you can finish!" I'm pretty sure my body is still moving back into place as I would have a sore hip after many of my long runs. I was starting to feel like an 80-year-old woman.

So, the day of the race, I was super nervous. I had one main goal and a sub-goal. :)  My main goal was to finish the run without walking, and my sub-goal was to run 10 minute miles.  I knew the sub-goal would be kind of hard to accomplish since I hadn't been running that during my training. But, I held out a little hope that my adrenaline would carry me a little faster.

It was super cold the morning of the race (maybe in high 40s?), and there were so many people there.  They all seemed like they were running with someone, so I felt a little out of place.  Jeff and Gemma dropped me off, and I lined up with the 9:55 pacer, only to see one of my friends from book club!  We decided to run together, but agreed that if either one of us need to drop behind or move ahead, we would just do what we needed to do.  I was so thankful to have her!

The run was AWESOME.  The weather was perfect for a run. The course was gorgeous. The "fans" were fabulous!  I was SO grateful to see friendly faces in Christy, Angie, and Katie. (Not to mention Jeff, Gemma and my mom!) And, it turns out my Nike+ipod device hadn't been calibrated very well at all! I had most likely been running 10 minute miles and better all throughout my training. I ended up finishing the race in 2 hours and 7 minutes, which was a pace of 9:43.  I'm pretty proud of myself, but honestly, a little disappointed because at the end, it felt just a little too easy.  Maybe I'll run another one some day and shoot for under 2 hours, but right now, my body needs a break! :)

Mile 12ish.

Finishers medal

Family photo time!

The running was a little exhausting for Gemma!
So, I can cross off another thing on my goal list. (One of the few, I'm afraid.) I'll post an update soon on the things I have accomplished on my list.  Maybe that will give me some motivation to get a few more things done in the meantime!

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