Tuesday, April 21, 2009

My First Half Marathon

I officially accomplished at least ONE of my things to do in 2009! Hooray! Though on the outset it seemed as though a half marathon would prove nearly impossible to complete, after some rigorous training thanks to my awesome coach (my dear old Dad), some tough runs, and some minor injuries, I completed my first half marathon.

Friday night my little family of three traveled to Harriman, TN for the race the next morning. It's about 2 and a half hours from Nashville, and Aiden really hated the drive! For real! Nate got me some carbo grub and we hit the hay for an early morning.

The race was in downtown Harriman, and it was such a cute little town. It began and ended in this little park along a river, so it was quite beautiful. The morning was dry and chilly, but perfect for a long run. After some preparation, stretching, and a good cup of coffee, I was off to run my race amongst the other 100 or so runners. Amazingly enough, I was the second place woman OVERALL, first in my age group, AND I beat my goal time by 20 minutes and my "dream time" by 5 minutes...and still felt AMAZING after it was all said and done.

Needless to say, I think I caught the "bug" and found myself wanting to run another one very soon. The downside to that is it's now summer and all the races are short distances. So maybe I'll start training for a full marathon and see what happens. Not sure what to do. I know I'll keep running and I'll definitely do more halves. It's a fun distance to run and I learned a lot along the way. Through my training I learned that speed days, hill days, tempo runs, and long runs only serve as preparation for the final goal and while not fun, the work truly does pay off. And I guess I can apply that to life as well...though there are some times in my life I have to do things I really hate doing or that are completely uncomfortable (even painful), it will pay off as I continue down the road of life...and the next time that challenge rolls around, it will be cake compared to what it was the first time. It's all in your perspective.

But what a fun experience, one I will remember. Especially having that cute little guy (well TWO cute little guys) there at the finish line waiting for me! You can see all the pics here.

He got to go and spend the night with Mimi and Pops after the race, which gave them some great one on one time with him and gave Nate and I a brief "staycation" at our house. It was the first time we'd been at our house without the little man there. It was kind of odd, but also quite a treat. We missed him, but he had fun on his trip! Here's some pics from his little adventure with the tricycle and exploring the outdoors! :)

And from the race:
Getting out my pre-race jitters with my little boy.
Getting ready to go!
Dad came and joined me as I passed this girl around mile 8. Felt so good!
My sweet family...
My medal for finishing...trophy too!


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