Tuesday, December 6, 2011

so i ran a half marathon.

Months ago, I set a goal. To be a runner. Sunday, I proved that I can do it.

I signed up for the Rock 'n' Roll Las Vegas Strip at Night Half Marathon back in May. I ran lots of miles. I had some injuries. I doubted myself. But in the end, it was crossing the finish line that really mattered. When the race was about to start, I knew that my best goal would be to finish. Sure, I wanted to finish under three hours, but that was not the important thing here. Finish. That's all.

Like I said in my RunKeeper post, I felt great until I didn't. I actually was consistently moving from the start of the race until near mile 10. I walked through a few water stations prior to mile 10, but I was able to pull myself together and keep running. See below:


Considering my history, it would be easy to assume that my legs were the problem. Sore calves, sore shins, sore hip(s)... but this time, that wasn't it. I was in control of my breathing and the only part below my waist that really hurt was the soles of my feet. Awesome!

Except that my back hurt. Bad. By mile 10, I realized that it hurt too bad to keep running. The last thing I wanted to do was walk with only 3.1 miles left to go. But thankfully, right after I started walking, my sorority little sister and good friend Melissa saw me and walked with me. She said her legs were sore, and at this point I'm not sure if I held her back or if she wanted to walk too, but it was GREAT to have someone right there. Though there were moments when I felt like I could have started running, it wouldn't have lasted long. With less than a half mile to go we set out to start running again, just through the finish chute.

I finished in 3:09:48, and I'm proud of it. So proud. When it comes to endurance sports, I tend to be a bit emotional, and I cried when I finished. I cried a little as I was starting my race, I got choked up when I saw the wheelchair athletes finishing, and I really lost it in the finish chute. I came a long way and accomplished something not many people even have the guts to try.

I'm sore now, and though I am glad I'm not signed up for my next half quite yet, I know that in 2012, I want to do at least 2 halfs in addition to some 5ks and 10ks. Next year I'm going to get serious about running, so that in 2013 I can do a full marathon - something I claimed I would do this year without realizing how much dedication it really takes.

I want to thank everyone that supported me leading up to this event, including Justin, Melissa, Brent and Josh who were part of our group in Vegas that all did our first half marathon. It's not easy, and no one ever said it would be, but damn is it worth it.

Stay tuned ... I have some other fun posts before the end of the year and I hope you enjoy them as much as I am looking forward to writing them!