I didn’t sleep very well at all last night, not because of nerves or excitement, but because Lincoln woke up screaming at 1:30 am. My alarm clock was already set to go off at the ungodly hour of 4:30 am to begin with. Tim put Lincoln in the bed with us when he wouldn’t settle down and go back to bed, and its never fun sleeping with elbows and feet in your rib cage. I managed to fall back asleep for a little while but ended up waking before the alarm went off.
We got up and got dressed to head to Auburn (about an hour from home). I ate a light breakfast of cheese grits, just one small packet. We intended to leave the house at 5:30, but we didn’t end up getting everything together and pulling out until 6:50. Tim drove like a bat out of hell to make sure we got there on time! Ok, he drove 75-77 mph, but trust me … thats like a bat out of hell for him. I actually considered driving because I know how its done, but he knows Auburn much better than I do.
We got there in plenty of time for me to pick up my packet and snap a few pictures before the race started.
And no, I didn’t run with the stroller. I had several people ask me if I was going to. But there was a guy who ran with a double jog stroller that had 2 big kids in it. More power to you double jog stroller dude!
Finally just before 7:30 we lined up at the start and the gun went off, so to speak. (It was actually a woman yelling GO!)
It was actually pretty cool having Tim on the sidelines of this race instead of running in it with me because he was able to snap some random pictures of me along the course.
Oops, wardrobe malfunction.
The course was pretty interesting, it went along the road for about 5 miles and then we turned and headed into Chewacla State Park. There were lots of “rolling hills” and a couple pretty steep ones too.
Along the route people were sitting in their yards watching the runners go by and I saw some really inspirational signs. Some of them said …
“Never Never Never Give Up!” – Winston Churchill
They will soar high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint. -Isaiah 40:31
Let us run with endurance the race that is set before us. – Hebrews 12:1
There were a few other signs as well, but those were the ones I specifically remember. They were very motivational and I really appreciate the people who thought of us and provided those messages.
Tim and Lincoln were waiting for me at the halfway point of the race and I got to wave to them and blow kisses to my little man. I also got to do a little mothering along the way. (Lincoln was getting in the way of the runners.)
The first 9 miles of the race were easy peasy. Things started getting a little tough around mile 10 when the hills starting getting more intense. But there was a woman running side by side with me and after about a mile of running together she pulled off her headphones and said to me: “I’m pacing with you, so you can’t slow down, we only have a 5K left to go now”. That gave me just the motivation I needed to maintain my pace. I asked her if this was her first Half and she said no, and when I told her it was mine she said, “well, you got this girl!”
My family spotted me again as I headed up towards the finish line.
I hit the finish line at 1:53:07, beating my super secret goal of 2 hours!
As soon as I finished the race Lincoln ran up to me for a big hug!
My splits were:
Mile 1 – 8:54
Mile 2 – 8:38
Mile 3 – 8:31
Mile 4 – 8:46
Mile 5 – 8:33
Mile 6 – 8:40
Mile 7 – 8:41
Mile 8 – 8:46
Mile 9 – 8:25
Mile 10 – 8:40
Mile 11 – 8:26
Mile 12 – 8:20
Mile 13 – 8:05
Last .21 (long course) – 1:34
After the race Tim, Lincoln and I went to the Farmer’s Market and bought some locally grown produce. We got zucchini, onions, bell peppers, dill pickles, sweet potatoes, cherry tomatoes and Amish cheese.
After lunch we headed home. Tim dropped Lincoln off at his mom’s house for a few hours and we curled up in the bed and took a nap.
The Half Marathon was an absolutely amazing experience and I’m so glad that I didn’t chicken out! I feel so proud and accomplished. I can’t wait for the next one! I’m planning on running the Mercedes Half Marathon in Birmingham on February 14th if I can find someone to work for me that night, and I might do it even if I have to work. We’ll see.