Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Bostons' Run to Remember Race Recap

I finished my first half marathon on Sunday in Boston!  Here are my stats for the race:

Place: 1139
Division Total: 200/1391
Gun Time: 1:53:41
Net Time: 1:53:05 
Pace: 8:38

Crossing the finish line!
Race Recap
The race started at 8am outside of the Seaport World Trade Center in Boston. I was extremely nervous at the starting line, which didn't go away even after I started running. During the first six miles, I had all kinds of thoughts of self-doubt going through my mind, so much so that I actually didn't pay much attention to my surroundings at all. Around mile six, I started to believe that I could in fact get through the entire 13 miles. However, at mile eight, I started to get really tired. From that point on it took everything in me to not walk. 
Me and my mom at the starting line (she did the 5 mile run).
It was really hot and humid and I stopped at three different water stations to chug water. Although I needed and appreciated the water, after stopping it was really hard getting started again. I also ate two separate packs of Gu, one which I brought myself and one that was provided at mile 8. I can't say the Gu made too much of a difference in my performance. 
At several points along the way, I saw several people really struggling, I'm guessing from the heat. One man was lying on his back in the street with his eyes closed and it appeared that someone might have been giving him mouth to mouth. Ryan said that 10 feet before the finish line, a woman collapsed and had to be carried away. Both situations are good reminders to listen to your body and not push your self to the breaking point!

For the last half mile, I was just so unbelievably happy to just be done. I found a bit of energy to pick up my pace and finish strong.

So happy to be finished!
Reflections
Although I'm incredibly happy that I finished my first half  marathon and I was pleased with the time, I can't say that it was my best run. I've learned over the past few months that some days you have good runs and other days you have crappy runs... and most of the time there is just no rhyme or reason why. Sunday was just one of those days where my legs felt like sandbags, my energy levels were low and I never settled into the groove.
I can't blame tiredness, dehydration or the things I ate for my bad run, since I was well hydrated, had gotten lots of sleep, and had taken care to incorporate carbs into my diet the week leading up to the race. I do think that I can put some blame on not running enough in the two weeks leading up to the race. In fact, because I felt sick last week, I only ran once. I've learned over that past few months that I need to run at least three times a week for my fitness to be at its peak level. When I don't, my running suffers.
I think what bothers me most about the race on Sunday is that I didn't feel much of the competitive spirit that I normally experience when racing. For most of the 13.1 miles, I was completely fixated on simply getting to the finish line, that I didn't care too much about my time or working on negative splits. I think this indicates just how tired I was and is something I definitely want to do differently next time around. 
With all of the above said, please don't get me wrong: I'm incredibly proud to have finished a half marathon and am happy with my time. I can only hope that next time around, I will feel the strength, competitive drive that I did in the GW Parkway Classic. 

Future Training

So what's next? Well, first I have to heal these terribly blistered feet. For all of my race preparation, I forgot my running socks in Virginia and had to borrow my mom's for the race, which clearly didn't bode well for my poor feet.


 

I recently just signed up for the Thunder Road Half Marathon in Charlotte, North Carolina in November. My reasons for entering this particular race will be detailed in a post later this week, so stay tuned. 

I'm also looking for an early fall race and am considering the Wilson Bridge Half Marathon on October 2nd. I feel like I have to get a few more half marathons under my belt before I can commit to a full marathon.

I don't plan on signing up for any summer races, since the weather is already pretty unbearable (it's over 90 here today). I do plan to keep running three times a week to keep my mileage up so that come late summer, I don't have to start training from scratch. So you will continue to hear about my running pursuits throughout the the summer. If all goes well, you also will hopefully hear about me becoming a group fitness instructor! I definitely plan to have an active summer and to document it all here.

What are you your summer fitness plans?

1 comment:

  1. Sigh...I have tried to comment 234234 times but Blogspot won't let me! Hopefully now...

    Anyway, I am SO.SO.SO. proud of you! You are such a speedster even on days when you're not feeling 100%!! And ouch to your poor feet- I hope they get better soon!

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