*…aka River City Half Marathon Report.
It is now 8pm PST, and I am finally, finally feeling back in this world. Today was my very first half Marathon. In Sacramento. In a place that we had run before…Discovery Park. We had our 10K back in October…so it was with trepidation as we were looking over Hwy 99 AGAIN…and realizing…Hey, are we doing THAT trail again?
Jami was at my door at 5:20…Kim’s husband had driven to Fleet Feet to get our bibs, but there was really no need…not a big race. We picked up Kim, and got on the road. I fell asleep around Galt, and woke up on 99, when we should have been on I5. Jami sped around the turns like a madwoman, and we finally made it to the Finish at Discovery park, where a big school bus would take us 13.1 miles away to the middle of the trail.
3 Bathroom stops later, and I realized that no, “nothing” would be moving today. No big crowds, which was nice, but with that comes no clocks, and no mile markers as I was soon to figure out. I read Glenn’s advice (THANK YOU!!!) on race strategy, and it was helpful. He was in my brain for the whole time. As was the mean girl, who also lived in my head from mile 7-11. (More on that later)
Mile 1-2. I really tried to go slowly. I ran a 10:35 or so, but wasn’t sure due to no markers. I practiced holding back. My calves were trying to talk to me, but I ignored them…
Mile 3-6. Plink, plink, plink. I was passing women my age one by one…I was trying to not go all out, because the advice was pace pace pace so you are not miserable the second half. (I was anyway). I didn’t stop at the first aid station, but decided to stop at every one afterward. It was in the mid 70s-low 80s that first hour. I was confident, and happy.
Mile 7. The calves were quiet, but suddenly my right baby toe was screaming. It hurt. I tried to alter my stride, to no avail. Mile 7-10 were characterized by long sunny runs. You would turn on the trail only to be met by another long hot run. Someone was smoking on the side. I do remember that. I had taken some HEED at mile 6, and I started to upchuck a little. What’s that advice about not trying anything new?
It was at this point that I had a very bad, negative, ugly voice in my head. I’m serious when I say I’m not schizophrenic. However, I battled her for 4 miles. She was yammering on and on about how ridiculous it was for me to even try to run…who did I think I was…you’re too heavy, too old…she went on to rake me over the coals…you have no career, what a loser, etc. On and off we battled, and I do have to say I won. I finally said outloud, “SHUT UP AND RUN”. She convinced me at one point to stop blogging, tweeting, etc., that I had nothing to offer, etc. This was the crux of my run.
Mile 11-12-13 were all the same. At 2 hours, I simply stopped and walked for a few minutes, and it felt wonderful. It was 85 or hotter, and I knew the last three would be brutal. Every runner I initially plinked off, now plinked off me. A few bikers shouted, “You’re almost there!”, at mile 11. My number one pet peeve…You’re almost there does not mean 2 more miles. Ever.
Mile 13 I finally saw Kim and Jami on the course waving frantically. I got up to them, and Kim yelled, “This is it. Last corner!!!” I had tears in my eyes, and wanted to bawl. I did not think I could take one.more.step. I turned and saw people, flags, cones. And finally, peace.
We got on the lawn, and I said that was it. I was done. Never again, and who wants my Nike Women’s Marathon spot? We got ice and laid the bag across my toes. For several minutes my feet were in real pain. I swore then and there that this 50 year old would NOT be running again. Ever. And, I meant it. It was ugly. It’s only now, after 2 hours in the spa and a big helping of Taco Bell, that I am finally feeling back in this world.
If I ever run again, ever, I will hire a coach/therapist for my head. Seriously, I battled today. My time is not terrible, considering my first half was better, but every step at the end was a struggle. I am disappointed, but I learned a huge lesson. I will have to slay this demon and b***h-slap her down to be able to run again. Seriously.
|Date:||4/19/2009 8:30 AM|
|Course:||River City Half Marathon|
|Pace:||12:22 / mile|
|Misc:||Quality: 6/10, Effort: 4/10|
|Weather:||83° F, Sunny|
VO2 Max: 25.3
(PS! Great news: Jami was first in 40-44 division with 1:50, and Kim got 2:15~~ We had so much fun together~~)