Sunday, October 13, 2013

Mohawk Hudson River Half Marathon recap - 2013

Today I kicked some butt on the Hudson River bike path.
But - I am skipping ahead. Let me start at the beginning.

I woke up at 6:30 and after standing outside for 5 minutes trying to get a good feel for the temperature, I got dressed. (Doesn't every runner stand outside before a race?) After changing my outfit about four times - I finally settled on a tank and a running skirt. And I was glad I went with the tank. It turned out to be a warm day. I had some peanut butter with a banana and I went to pick up Felice. Then we headed over to Karyn's house, and her husband drove us to the race.

Me, Felice, Karyn and Karyn's sister-in-law before the race.

I was nervous. Really nervous. In fact, I felt so nervous it reminded me of how I felt before the full marathon in New Jersey. I really wanted to do well. I wanted to run sub-two, and I just wanted to go out and start the race and get it done.

 Before the race started, we met up with some other Strong Running Mamas for a photo.

Soon after, we lined up and the gun went off at 8:30. And we were off. And I made a big mistake. I started off too fast. I am not sure why I did that. I know better. But, I couldn't help myself. I ran the first 4 miles in the 8:05- 8:30 range. Big mistake. I needed to run a 9:05 pace to come in under two hours. So what was I doing running in the 8:30 range??? I am not really sure. But, I trucked along and gave myself pep talk after pep talk about how I really needed to hold back. And then around mile 6, I started to slow up because I was tired. Of course. I knew this would happen. I predicted it. But I figured I had a big enough cushion from the beginning of the race that it would carry me for the last half of the race.

I continued on, and I started to feel kind of "off." Around mile 8, I was really wishing that I hadn't taken my gel. My stomach just felt full. And my legs felt like dead weight. I was tired. I wish that I could say I felt like a rock star through the race. But I was struggling. And I was trying to ignore my "I can't do this" voice.

I continued on and hit mile 9. I was still on pace to finish in under two hours. But my cushion was becoming less and less. I didn't have much time to waste. Around mile 11, it was getting close. Really close. Too close for comfort. I decided that I had to dig deep and really push. I was so close - that it would have been a huge let down for me to not come in under two hours. So, I increased my pace. And I ran my as fast as my legs would carry me. I hit mile 12.5 and that is always a screw with my mind kind of moment. Mile 12.5 is at the parking lot. And on a normal training run, that is where our long runs end. But the end of the race is another 1/2 mile. So I had to keep going. Luckily I saw Melissa H. and Danielle and Melissa D. cheering. They gave me that adrenaline surge that I needed. Thanks ladies!

Then as I got closer to the finish line - I saw Janis cheering me on. She gave me another adrenaline surge. And then I saw the clock. And I knew I was good. I was safe. I was going to meet my goal.

I crossed the line with over a minute to spare. 1:58:44.

I had done it. I had worked for months on this goal. Lots of icky speed work. Lots of hill repeats. Lots of fast runs. And it paid off. I was on top of the world.

Time: 1:58:44
I placed 248 out of 800 runners.
I was 17th in my age age group.
My pace was 9:04.

Not only did I run a sub-two half, but I had a BIG PR. Last year, I came in at 2:05:55. I cut around 7 minutes off my time! Holy cow. I am a happy, happy girl. Congrats to all my other running friends who had great races. Lots of PR's today and lots of happy moments!

Felice and me - post race! Both of us had personal records!
And now, I do believe I will sleep VERY well tonight! Thanks for reading...

1 comment:

The Happy Runner said...

Awesome race! So funny that I felt the same way -- started too fast and felt fine until about mile 7 or 8 then watched as my cushion started to fade away. So glad we got our PRs!