Half Marathon Success!

I ran my first half marathon yesterday.  Just in case you don’t know, that’s 13.1 miles.  It was kinda awesome.  The architect dropped me off at Champoeg State Park at just after 8 AM.  He hung out with me for a while – until about 8:45.

The first 1.5 miles sucked.  My right ankle was so tight, I was worried about my ability to run even the quarter marathon, much less the half.  I stopped at the first water stop and stretched for 2-3 minutes, and after that, the only pain I felt was the general pains one gets when one runs a really long way.

The course was entirely on paved bike paths and roads – so it was a bit higher impact than I was expecting.  After the first two miles, I maintained a pretty steady pace.  I don’t have my exact finish time yet – but it was right around 2:24 – which is a 10:59 mile!  My real goal was to finish in under 2:30, but I was really hoping to average under an 11 minute mile, and I think I just about got there.

I was so nervous the night before and that morning.  My stomach was full of bats (not butterflies).  I calmed down about 30 minutes in, and then just found people to run behind.  There weren’t a lot of hills, but the couple on the course were not bad – all the training I’ve done in Forest Park has paid off – that’s the only place I passed anyone.

The race was so well organized with lots of bathroom areas (which fortunately I didn’t have to use) and lots of water & glucose stops.

I’d brought two energy gels, and used them at miles 6 & 10.  I felt great until about mile 12.5 – and then I was getting anxious for the end.  However, I’m pretty sure that if I’d had to, I could have run another 2 or 3 miles.  I felt strong until the end – and my body wasn’t needing to quit yet.  I felt a little wobbly at the finish line, when I had to stop moving right away to turn in my timing chip.

My most excellent friend Kim met me at the finish line.  We walked for a while so I could cool down (and find the cinnamon rolls!) and then she drove me home.

We were just in time to catch the end of the St. John’s parade, and Kim also brought all the fixin’s for her world-famous bloody marys.  Perfect recovery drink, in my opinion!

I spent the rest of the afternoon being exhausted on the couch, and then forced the architect to a local restaurant so I could have a milkshake and a turkey sandwich (and a pitcher of water).

Today I am more sore than I thought I would be, considering how good I felt yesterday, but not only was that the furthest I’ve run, it was also a little faster than I’ve been tunning my long training runs.  I’m also not hungry at all – and considering I ate all the food in the world yesterday, maybe that’s not surprising.

However, I’m feeling confident that a fall marathon is doable – now it’s just a matter of deciding which one: the Timberline or the Portland.

In non-me news, my good friend Marcy is 100% officially a Ph.D!  You will now all address her as Dr. Marcy and bow as a token of respect.  Perhaps, you should also kiss her ring.  She is very fancy, and is the smartest person I know.  I’m sure that the world of early childhood education is very very excited to have such a distinguished person entering their ranks.  I expect she’ll be Secretary of Education in no time (I’ve already sent letters of recommendation to Hilary & Barack, just in case).

Now that I’ve lounged for a suitable length of time, I should probably try to get something done.  Happy weekend!  And Happy Mother’s Day, of course, to all moms out there, but especially to my mom.

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