In an earlier post, I announced that John and I would be running the Half Marathon in Richmond, and we began our 10-week training program with a bang... literally. John fell on the trail and banged himself up pretty bad, but continued to battle. We hit 8 miles, then 10 and soon 11 miles before running the half on November 13, 2010. It was a beautiful sunny day, chilly in the morning and warming up quickly. I was excited and nervous at the same time. Even though this was my second half marathon, I was still on edge because 2nd-time races are always bad luck for me. I'm good with the "first" attempt, and not so good the second time around.
This race was no different. I wore too many layers and didn't take them off during the race when I should have just thrown them to the curb for good. My right leg cramped up almost immediately and by mile 5 or 6 I was miserable. John ran on past me since I knew I was holding him back. I resorted to walking. This was the first race I've ever competed in and had to walk. How depressing.
And now, looking back... I'm actually quite pleased
with my run. While I finished in 2:10, a wopping 12 minutes slower than last year's time, I realize that I finished a half marathon, and that's an accomplishment in itself. Four years and 50 pounds ago, I would have never imagined myself even running 6 miles, let alone 13. So... am I bummed that I bonked my race for the first time? Yes. But I'm glad it happened now and I know what it feels like to do poorly in a race, and to pick myself back up to run another. I've conquered many of my fears and reach many of my life-long goals. Running any race, good or bad, will always be an accomplishment for me. This was John's first half marathon. He finished in 2:05! I am very proud of him, and given his hectic school, work and life schedule, he still managed to keep up his training.
So with that said, I'm about to put something in writing that I'm terrified to write. I'm terrified because it makes me accountable from now on... I've decided to train for my first ever FULL Marathon. A co-worker/friend of mine managed to slip the marathon bug in my head, and after a few days of really thinking about it, I decided it's time. I'm already at a half marathon base, so why not keep going? I joined the RRRC.org winter training team, so hopefully I'll meet new friends and get the training I need. Plus, its the off-season. I'd rather do my marathon training quietly and with few people watching (just in case I fail. Yes, I still have a fear of failure, I'm admitting it). I've decided on running the National Marathon in DC on March 26, 2011. It's a smaller participant count (15,000 tops), and far enough past St. Patty's that I can still go to Boston and party with my sister and her friends up there, and recover in time for the race (priorities, duh). My co-worker is going to train and race it with me, which is good because I really do need a buddy system to do a race like this. John graduates from his Systems Engineering master's program at UVA in April, so I can focus on my training while he studies all winter. And not to mention the health benefits. I get to eat all winter long guilt free! Hurray!
So, with that said. I'm going to complete my first marathon. There I said it. Notice I didn't put a time down. I think that may be bad luck. Just finishing is good enough for me. One more item on my bucket list to check off... Wish me luck!