My First Half Marathon

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The holiday’s have finally passed, the new year has begun, goals have been set and 2016 has definitely been treating myself and my family very well. I’ve been building myself for success within the past year, starting with my Journey to 30. It started with getting back into shape, with my yo-yo weight, and finally stabilizing it, and putting me on a path of a healthy lifestyle. I focused much summer-winter 2015 on runs easing myself into 5Ks, 10Ks, and kicking 2015 in the butt with my very first half marathons!!

After being able to put myself on a healthy track and rhythm of fitness and running, many parts of my life such as social circles, parenting, and my relationship with my long time boyfriend improved. It’s something about that healthy start of working out, shocking your body, being discipline and giving your body the right nutrients is amazing. Sleep, rest, workout repeat….No joke, but that same commitment, and drive helped me later on naturally, and happened organically.

Setting goals with an action plan, and completing them is the biggest reward ever. You don’t have to have it figured out in the beginning. Just move forward, and I promise you things will fall into place!! As healthy goals started to settle, I was able to add more to my action-to-do list. Commitments towards health was nailed, family, and blogging, along with YouTube commitments (when I get that opportunity) got a lot easier to mange all on top of each other. I was definitely on a got path of being healthy and happy.

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I last ended my 2015 Journey To 30 HERE. With two half marathons. My first was a few days right after Thanksgiving. 13.3 miles, flat, trails, in my local neighborhood.

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Read more of my mental prep of my Thanksgiving Runs HERE.

Before my first half marathon, I literally thought what better way to top it off, with a 10K on Thanksgiving Day.

“I can handle it.” EHHHH………….Yeah, and no.

That wasn’t the case 24 hours later.

Nitro Turkey, Point Pinole Regional Park

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Read more on my 10K Nitro Turkey HERE.

Photo Credit: Brazen Racing

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Sunrise at Quarry Lakes Regional Park, Fremont, CA

November 28, 2015 was my first Half Marathon. 13.3 miles. I can do this. I think. My legs were tight, my hamstrings were shot, my IT bands were screaming no. Major soreness overload, foam rolling was needed, and a sports therapist would’ve suggested me that morning to rest. I knew I wasn’t ready, coming from a 10K just a day and half before. “Why am I here? Why did I do the 10K? I’m so much in pain!”

These were the thoughts I had in my head waiting at the Quarry Turkey corral waiting for my half marathon to begin. I woke up, got ready, gave myself ample time to warm up, hydrate, stretch (as much as I could,) and take action. Just finish. I already knew there would be no way to hit the 2 hour mark. This is just the beginning of my journey. I’m not going to nail it. I plan on running many, many, many, many, many more half marathons within my lifetime. This is only number 1.

The Quarry Turkey Half Marathon was hosted again, by my favorite group of people from Brazing Racing. A local business from Pinole, who host many great races throughout the Bay Area (particularly the East Bay, Bay Area.) I’ve devoted myself to Brazen Racing the entire year of 2015, because of their smooth event planning, cause, and great locations to host runs. The Quarry Turkey was my first half marathon. I’ve had a couple 5Ks, and 10Ks under my belt, and ambitious goal to run half marathons by the end of the year.This was the beginning of a new stepping stone for myself. I didn’t know what I was getting into. Just a good ol’ 13.3 miles right? Flat ground, no inclines. Easy yeah?

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Oh my dear fellow reader, I was wrong. I should’ve prepared myself a little bit more. Actually a lot more. I was walking my kids to school, jogging when the kids were at school, hiking with peers over the week, but I needed more……

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I’m going to type a few foot notes for myself real quick:

Tiffany Take ACTION!!!!!!!!!! Tiffany Take ACTION!!!!!!!!!! Tiffany Take ACTION!!!!!!!!!!

Half Marathon Training Program:

Monday, Wednesday, Friday, Sunday

2 Miles and 20 Min SS

Increase miles every 2 weeks, by a mile.

(Within a 16 week 4 month program)

Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday

30 Minute SS

30 Minute CT or Run 2 Miles (with continuing mile increase)

Saturday

 – REST –

SS (Strength Train & Stretch)
Do your own routine or take a yoga class.
CT (Cross Train)
Do other cardio other than running such as biking, swimming, hiking, or a cardio class.
REST:
You don’t have to skipout on exercise entirely. Take a walk, do some stretches or use a foam roller to massage your hard working legs.

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The this point, I knew I was already in danger due to my tight hamstrings, and locked up IT bands. I was already telling myself to hold back on long strides, and extended leaps avoiding other runners. I knew I had to keep it slow and steady, back off when needed when pain would spike, and keep an eye on time. I had to be at mile 9 within 2 hours!!

There was a time during my run along the Alameda Creek Trail that I was cheering myself on, giving myself positive reinforcement, and also chatting.  During long distances run, all you have is your mind, and thoughts to sort through. I never really run with earbuds in my past runs, because I do enjoy the raw sound of runners, and nature crunching at your feet (especially during trail runs). I’ve mentioned before, running is so raw, and thats what I love about it. To me it isn’t the race, but about completing the race, depending on yourself only to finish. It takes a lot of sweat, energy, and mental “can-do” attitude to complete the 13.3 miles. Only you can make it happen.

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Me crossing the finish line at 3 hours 2 minutes. (In pain) But I came in at 12th Place for FEMALE 25 (age group) HALF MARATHON POSITION!

 

The results. For a first time doing a half marathon, without crazy extensive training, I thought this was pretty good. The ultimate goal in the future is to finish at 2.5 hours. But I’ll take the 3hr mark. I do know theres plenty room of improvement. But I’d like to remind myself that this isn’t easy. A 14min mile is less than ideal. I know exactly what needs to bee done in order to improve, and I kind of had set myself for disaster as I had a 10K 2 days prior to my first half marathon.

Legs were tight, rest was needed. I was seriously crying inside.

13/1 miles at at a almost 14 min mile pace, CAN DEFINITELY IMPROVE (this is in CAPS for my future self.) Half Marathons are amazing. I’d honestly run them more than I could, AND I SHOULD. To those out there with fitness goals, weather you’re shedding the weight, finding a healthy outlet, looking for a new challenge, Half Marathons are definitely something. I’d like express to my readers, I’m really hard on myself. But if I give it my all, wake up, show up, and give a full swing at it, my job is done.  Again, this was my first Half Marathon. I can’t believe I completed it, under the pain I was in, but I finished! Who knows how well I can do at the next… (READ Upcoming post!!)

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I look forward to more Half Marathons and the training that will help me reach my time goal. Here’s to a Happy Thanksgiving to health and happiness!! Stay tuned, as I’ll share my next Half Marathon experience (I had to split the two posts, bc the photos are just awesome!)

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