Well, this morning's half-marathon went about as well as it possibly could!
This race was timed with St. Paddy's day festivities - which for me included a GIANT Port City Java smoothie, and a lot of pasta for dinner. Oh, and like 12 Guinness brownies. ;-)
I was lucky that my friend Jade opened up her place for me and Alisha to stay. While the party raged down the road, we were in bed by 10, and it felt great.
Alisha had to sit the race out unfortunately, because of a nasty foot injury. But she is still the best team mate ever, and woke up at the crack of dawn (actually, about an hour before it) to drive us to Wrightsville beach.
It was pitch black, and cold and misty, when the countdown came at 6:45. We ran "the loop" at Wrightsville and then over the bridges to the mainland. I was a little disappointed we couldn't see more of the sound! The sun came up later, but the weather stayed misty and cool. Pretty good running weather if you ask me.
I had a killer playlist, supplemented by song suggestion from my friends. It was like getting a musical shoutout! Alisha met me around Mayfaire (mile 4) and ran about a mile with me. It was really nice to have some company and get some reassurance that I was right on track. Then, Preston rode with me on his bike for a while. It was awesome to see him, and it perked me up!
Right about then, the marathon and half-marathon elites passed me. Haha. Half guys were about to finish and the fulls were half way. It was kind of cool, and I'm in pictures with the winner of the half. It's like we were just out on a jog or something!
We swung into landfall around mile 6. It's a VERY exclusive neighborhood in Wilmington. So exclusive that Preston couldn't come in there with his bike. It felt like "Oh, aren't you so privileged that you get to see our special neighborhood??!!) We even got a "welcome to landfall" on our way in. It came off as snotty.
6-11 were in the neighborhood, and those were definitely the longest miles. There were fewer people cheering us on, bigger gaps between me and the other runners, and lots of big houses. It was pretty though.
My splits in miles 8-10 were pretty bad - I went from a 12:15 average to about 13:00. I was struggling.
But, at mile 11, there was Alisha, ready and waiting to get me to the finish. She ran the last 2 miles with me and it was welcome. I would have slowed down even more if she hadn't joined me. I even burst into song around mile 12 (Don't Rain on My Parade of course!)... people thought I was nuts.
|Good lord, I love my friends.|
Anyways, I finished at 2:50 - just 10 minutes slower than my "stretch goal" pace, and about 23 minutes faster than my last half. Doesn't get much better than that!
The aftermath hasn't been pleasant - did it hurt this much after the last one? My joints are all sore. I'm living on ibuprofen. I've also got a blister in a bad spot. You don't want any more details than that.
So, there you have it. 2 half-marathons in less than a year. Sure didn't see that one happening!