Monday, November 16, 2015

Chickamauga Battlefield Half Marathon

I ran 13.1 miles 2 days ago. I still kind of can't believe it, but my body is still reminding me in terrible ways :)

I woke up in my Chattanooga hotel room with a really sore throat, but brushed it off and got some coffee to help soothe it. Race day was here and I had loads of adrenaline. I met Amanda and Marsha at the battlefield and we sat in the car with the heater running before getting out to brave the start at a brisk 36 degrees.

Mile 1: 11:15

I felt sooo good getting started. I was in the front of the pack with Amanda and Marsha so I had fun watching all of the fast people drift by me as I dropped into the back.

Mile 2: 12:54

I hit a Porta potty here... and for some reason stopped my Garmin... probably a habit from training, but that's why my Garmin time and official time were off by about 3 minutes.

Mile 3: 13:45

I felt like I had never worn my spibelt ever. For some reason it randomly started flopping around so I had to stop and fix it. I had on gloves and my water bottle so I was fumbling around like a psycho. Rawr.

Mile 4: 12:12
Mile 5: 12:13
Mile 6: 12:25

I felt really good through these miles. I found a couple of girls who were run/walking at a nice clip and tried to hang with them.

Mile 7: 13:40

Hills. Mountains. Giant mountainous mountains.

Mile 8: 14:06

It was about here that my right hip started feeling tight. I stopped a couple times and tried to stretch it out, but it was deep in my IT band.

Mile 9: 14:40

More rolling hills and a dead leg. I could run for approximately 30 seconds at a time before losing all feeling in my right leg. Enter Beth. This sweet soul checked on me while I was stretching, and was doing a lot of walking herself... so I decided to stick with her. Her goal was to finish, also, and we found we had alot in common - her husband is a K9 officer and she has a 5 year old little boy. A friend of hers picked her up about a half mile from the finish and I waved her on to finish out strong.

Mile 10: 14:51
Mile 11: 16:01
Mile 12: 16:47
Mile 13: 17:03

I didn't think Mile 13 would ever end. It was frustrating that my lungs were fine... my legs just wouldn't cooperate. I'd try to run and that right one would cave after 6 or 7 strides. When Amanda jumped onto the course with me I knew I had to grit my teeth and get through the finish or she'd drag me :)

Official finish time was 3 hours 9 minutes and 24 seconds. I'm pleased with that time considering all of the elements.

After the race I stretched a little. At lunch I had a hard time getting warm. We had great food and I filled up. We said our goodbyes and I loaded up to drive the 3 hours back home. I didn't feel great... my body was pretty achy. By that night I was running a full blown fever, and by Sunday morning I had a throat full of blisters. Apparently I had a case of strep throat brewing and that sore throat was the first symptom. I'm still recovering - my hips are loosening slowly, my shins are still a little sore, and I think I may have a slightly injured foot. Overall I don't think my body would have felt nearly as beat up if I hadn't been sick on top of the physical activity.

I'm proud of myself for finishing. Training was hard with mine and Josh's weird schedules. I only ran about 6 long runs... and my farthest training run was only 7.5 miles. If I ever do another half it will be when Carter is older. The time it takes to train was just difficult with our current life. I enjoyed trying something new, and seeing the amazing things my body can do when it's pushed. Huge thanks to Amanda for being a constant source of encouragement for me, and thanks to everyone who ran with me along the way to help support the effort :)

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