I ran 13.1 miles today! Well, actually 13.7, but I will get to that….
It was a little chilly when we got there, so my friend Bridget was helping me keep warm.
Then we decided to try to stretch like my daughter, only Bridget didn’t want to at first…
And then she got into it too! My daughter informed me that we did not do it right and she was showing me how it’s done
Since we were running different distances, we had to part ways at the starting line after we made some new friends. But we did find each other during the race and get to run for a little while together!
The half marathoners were let go at 8am and I was pretty close to the front of the pack. They put up the pace flags after we were all tightly packed in and waiting. I didn’t move. I was in with the 9:00 pace group, but quickly slowed down and stayed to the right so people could pass me.
See my Runningluv? It worked out so great on this long run!
The first few miles were pretty good. I found another blogger who I knew only from the internet and we ran together for awhile. She’s amazing and has done so many races! She was running faster than I normally do, so I told her I had to slow down after awhile. I didn’t want to use all my energy in the beginning and my app was telling me I was running faster than a 10:00 pace!
Around the 3 mile mark we saw the flag for 10 miles so I guessed that was for our trip back that way- only it was gone on my way back….
I kept looking for Bridget when I started to see the 10K racers coming by and I did see her eventually. She was about to loop around and I yelled “BRIDGET” and she yelled “I’LL BE RIGHT THERE!” and she was! We ran together for a little while and then I went on my way It was so nice to see her and give each other little pep talks. I was halfway done at that point.
After my phone told me I hit 10 miles, I saw my friend Kim (the driver/medic/photographer, lol), and started waving frantically at her so she could take my picture. I was still feeling pretty good at this point!
I love this picture because I look like I almost have runners legs! Woo hoo!
The last leg of the race was rough! I started to have trouble breathing so I was really trying hard to focus on that. The wind was coming at me, and that always makes it hard for me to breathe, so I spent a lot of time breathing out and then in deeply. At mile 11 I hit a wall. At least that’s what my husband says happened. I couldn’t breathe. I was gasping for air. So I started walking and drank a whole bunch of water. And I slowed my breathing down. I gave myself the length of a song, then started running again. I knew I only had 9 more songs to go and I would be done. Only my phone was telling me I was about to hit my goal! I saw these two ladies and I know one came back to get her friend and finish with her, so I asked:
Me: Is the finish was coming up?
Woman: You still have to turn the corner and then another corner.
Me: My phone says I’m done!
Woman: Your phone is a liar!
So this is me yelling at my phone that it’s a liar! Lol! My friend Kim loves when I call things a liar, she has a video of me….
I started struggling to breathe again, but I saw that the finish line was coming up and the clock was reading 2:29:29 so I sprinted! I was so close to being under 2:30 and I wanted to get there! And I did! My official chip time was 2:29:00 which is awesome! Well, at least I think so and I’m telling everyone I’m a rock star because of it!
Once I finished, I managed to make it to the water table and suck down almost an entire bottle of water, between my gasps for breath. I’m really surprised no one asked me if I was ok because I was really stumbling around. I headed towards the medical tent, convinced they were going to have to strap me to some oxygen. And none of the medical people noticed this crazy lady stumbling towards the tent. But I got it under control and was able to breathe enough to send a smiling picture to Facebook so everyone would know I was still alive.
I’m pretty sure I was telling Kim that I’m a rock star in this picture…I don’t quite remember, I was acting kind of silly
I’m thinking I was complaining about the girl that was smoking in this picture. She was smoking at the port a potties! In full race gear! In a crowd of athletes! That makes me so crazy mad!!!!! Take it elsewhere! Smoke was why I had asthma as a kid, and now that I don’t live with it in my house, I am asthma free. So maybe it wasn’t asthma, but it always made it hard for me to breathe, and I had to use an inhaler!
We headed on over to the physical therapy tent to get stretched out by a professional. But the woman said it was a 45 minute wait. I told her I wouldn’t make it that long and suggested next time they bring a huge container of foam rollers and yoga mats for people while they are waiting.
Here’s the awesome blogger I ran with! Check her out at Too Tall Fritz She is super nice and I love her blog! And look at that skirt!! I need one!
Bridget and I went in for our champagne glasses, but didn’t really have any interest in the after party. I don’t drink alcohol, and we didn’t pay for Kim to come in because we knew we weren’t going to stay. The glasses were nice though, so we went in and grabbed one, then headed back to the car to find the closest Starbucks. And get my Snickers. I told Kim not to carry any in the bag because I wasn’t sure if I would want them right after running. And I didn’t. I wanted 2 bananas and a ton of water. And then Snickers. And then coffee.
I ate 2 Snickers before we got to Starbucks. (Kim brought me a 6 pack! And a bag of minis! I LOVE her!) I know there are a ton of Starbucks in the city of Chicago, but city driving makes us all nervous, and I needed to sit for a bit before getting back out of the car. Bridget did roll the window down and yell to these two ladies with Starbucks cups to ask them where they got them, but we didn’t go to that Starbucks. I did let her know that I loved her for doing that though.
So by the time we got to Starbucks, I couldn’t decide what I wanted. Well, I knew I wanted a Caramel Ribbon Crunch, but they don’t have those anymore So I ordered a Carmel Macchiato. Decaff. Venti. And then realized I also wanted a Frappachino. Caffeinated. So I went back up to the counter and let the guy know I was ordering another drink, because I had just run a half marathon and that meant I was a rock star. He totally agreed that it meant I could do what I wanted.
When my drink was being made, Kim told the man to just keep squirting the whole bottle of caramel on my drink. So I let him know that I really liked the Caramel Ribbon Crunch and I’m really sad that they are no longer available. Kim told him they need to bring it back because I’m too skinny and I need to drink more. The guy then asked me how I stay skinny and said “don’t tell me it’s from running because I won’t do that” and I said, “Oh, you didn’t hear? I just ran a half marathon so I’m a rock star.” Lol! I’m pretty sure I was having a sugar rush from all that Snickers, and lack of protein after my run
Kim suggested we stretch before getting back in the car so I threw my leg up here and did a nice long stretch. Meanwhile, Bridget was stretching her leg up to the ceiling in the car, lol!
The rest of the ride home was full of some giggles and silliness. And we did a little dancing. Kim made us a mix CD- I mean, she brought a CD she thought we would love- but my phone told me that the current song was “Move like Jagger” and that is a pump-you-up song! So we were grooving!
I’m really glad I did this race. The swag was awesome, and I had a great time with my friends. I was a little disapointed in the course, as it was not closed off to the public and there were bikers and all kinds of other people on the trail. I saw a few runners almost get taken down by a bicycle! And there was another race going on and people were shooed on to the next water station as the one that was first was not for our race. It was an odd experience, and I think my next half marathon will have to be the Wisconsin half marathon where there a lot more spectators and a better outlined course. A few times I was unsure if I was even going the right way!
I used my champagne glass for my coffee when I got home
The Wisconsin half marathon is in May 2014, so I have some time to work on my core. I feel like that was a big problem as my core was what hurt the most when I was done. So I have to start cross training….
Did you race this weekend? Do you have a favorite race that is very organized and well put together?
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