Wow...even two days later I'm still a little WOW about what Guy and I did! Running a half marathon was something I never would have imagined us doing. And now...we did it! And we are considering doing more...but I'll get to that. Let's recap...
So the race was in Virginia, so we got up at the crack of dawn on Saturday to get on the road. You had to pick up your own race stuff, so we needed to get there at a reasonable hour so that we would have time to do that. The expo was pretty cool, I picked up one of these and we scoped everything out before heading towards the hotel.
We did this race with other friends (all faster than me and Guy and pretty much veterans of the half marathon thing), so we all stayed at the same hotel and had dinner together that night. After dinner it was time to get ready for the race and get to bed (wake up time was coming way too early). I laid everything out so that I was prepared and ready to go.
We were up by 4 am on Sunday. Had to be, just to get to the parking for the race and shuttled over to the starting line in plenty of time. It sucked (the early hour, not the other stuff). This was when I realized that as carefully as I had packed...my running sunglasses did not make the trip. I freaked for a few minutes and then said oh well. Thankfully one of our friends had a spare pair and I was good to go! Once we got the starting area, it was more hurry up and wait. So we hit the porta potty lines a couple of times (thankfully it was mostly dark...which made the portas a lot easier to deal with). Finally it was time to head to our corrals and get ready to start! Guy and I had made a plan that we would run the race together, so it was really nice and calming to my nerves for him to be there (not that you cold tell by the look on my face in this picture).
And then all of a sudden the race was on! We crossed the start line with our corrals and off we went. And wow...it was such a great experience! The first several miles just flew by...we were well ahead of our standard pace, and as much as we tried to slow ourselves down...we still were ahead of pace. The weather at the start was pretty nice (this is in my own opinion, quite a few runners struggled with the weather conditions) with decent temps and a nice breeze. And then the sun came out in full glory and we hit miles 8-10. Those miles sucked big donkey balls. Forgive the crude language, but that's about the cleanest way I can describe it. They were terrible. Those miles were in the sun, no shade, with little to no scenery. The temperatures climbed rapidly and the humidity just slapped us around. I was starting to doubt if we would be able to finish (Guy was pretty unhappy during this period of time also, and I later found out it took a much larger toll on him than I). And then FINALLY we passed mile 10. Only 3.1 miles to go. I felt like crud, but I just wanted to finish. And the I got a text from my Mom. She had signed up for runner tracking and had been receiving text messages updating her when I passed certain pre-determined points in the race. Her text was very simple, but it meant the world to me at that moment in time, I teared up, was ready to cry...and then I buckled down and told myself I was going to finish and finish strong!
About a half mile later I looked at Guy and was shocked to see an ugly red patch on his shirt...he was suffering from bloody nips. He hadn't even noticed til I pointed it out to him. Within a quarter mile we saw a medical tent and we ran to that and he got some bandaids applied and we were off again! Unfortunately we still had a hill to climb. So we walked up it. And then ran down it. About this point in time Guy was done. He wanted nothing else to do with the race, he was gonna walk the rest. I told him no. We were doing it together. So we did. The last mile was a lot of walking. But once we really could see we were almost at the finish...we ran. And crossed the line holding hands! (oh yeah...cheez city!!).
And then we got our medals.
And chocolate milk and pretzels and bananas and popsicles and gatorade and water. And then we went in search of our friends. My legs HURT! I was tired and wanted to sit down but knew if I did I would hate myself later (well my muscles would at least!). So we walked and walked. I had a bit of a meltdown because about this time I just became incredibly overwhelmed. We had freakin finished a half marathon!!! Guy and I stopped for a second, let me calm down...and then we were off. We eventually met up with our friends and all headed towards the shuttles to get back to our vehicle and then back to the hotel. Thankfully we weren't leaving until the next morning! We ate lunch, went swimming in the pool, and were lazy for a few hours before heading out to dinner with our group. By 7 pm...we were all pooped! So we headed back to the hotel and this was me for the rest of the night:
We got home yesterday, still a bit stiff and sore...but feeling pretty good. So good in fact...that today we registered as a team (me and Guy) for the RnR Savannah 1/2 marathon relay race in November! But more on that another day. Later!