Just two days after my Thanksgiving Nitro Trail run, I had my first ever first half marathon. After a 10K, without any major training besides the casual neighborhood runs one and twice a week, my body was already completely sore. Coming into a half marathon after my Thanksgiving run, being sore was a struggle. If I had the body 2 days ago on Thanksgiving besides running a 10K I would have preformed well, but that just wasn’t the case. This was a great example for myself to learn off of mistakes, hanging onto youth, and acquiring a sluggish, slow, stagnant routine what I thought would help me get through the race. I was so wrong, and it totally bit me in the ass.
The morning started calm and bright like any usual race day. Chilly, cold, windy, but always beautiful. The cold wind, is never really something to complain about on race days. Take a look at that morning sunrise. My half was held at Quarry Lakes. Basically my backyard. A flat terrain, trail perfect for beginner half marathoners, and runners. That’s a major reason why I signed up for this half. Flat and oh so local.
Photo’s Courtesy of the wonderful volunteer photographers of Brazen Racing
I woke up the morning feeling terribly sore, and in discomfort. I knew had to complete this half marathon. As much as I was in pain, and was not in my 100% tip top shape, it was only myself to blame for my flat and lax attitude towards a hefty challenge. The 13.2 miles, was going to be a challenge for me. I knew I gad to complete it. Weather walking, light jogging, or running…Whatever my legs were capable of doing. My main goal was to finish. At the beginning of the start line (corral) I tried my best to stretch, warm up, and get my legs ready for the upcoming miles. A simple leg lift was difficult for me to accomplish. I knew I was in trouble.
As the gun went off, the light jog began. I knew I had to reserve my energy, and not only that — but gage exactly what my legs were able to do. The pain was horrible. Throbbing, stiff, IT bands hard, and just heavy. No sugar coating, but my mile 1 I was worried. The MC made an announcement before the gun went off, that at 10:45a if you are no wear near mile 9, you may just need to call it a day. I refused to there. I told myself, if its one thing, I need to finish this half marathon at a good time, under the 3.5/4 hour max point. There is no need to walk this whatsoever especially in my condition.
Mile 8 arrived and I was still a bit worried. Typically, I never look at my phone while I run at races. I have my own mental clock, because I know a current pace I can withhold. But since my body was in a worry-some condition, and performing at my usual normal pace was such an unknown. I had to repeatedly take a look at my phone every 30mins or so. Thats about every 3.5 miles for myself.
At every Aid Station, I took advantage of the aid. I drank water, snacked on a few things, get in some sugar, and salty snacks. Just a nibble on one potato chip made my energy spike up just a tad. I knew I was going to finish. Not at my ultimate best time, but I knew I was going to finish. Every mile after mile 8 was such a struggle. The sun got hotter, the distance seemed longer. The turn around point was shortly after mile 8, and reaching mile 10 was torture. The race was extended to Alameda Creek Trail, with connects Fremont and Union City, and crosses along the 880 freeway. The turnaround was around the freeway underpass, and you’d have to make your way back to the Quarry Lake Regional Park. It felt so far during the time coming back to the regional park. At one point, I did feel like giving up, and going to my parents house. (They live quite close to Quarry Lakes, and was only a block away from one of the aid stations.) As tempting as it was, I didn’t. I needed to finish.
About 3 hours since the gun, I crossed the finish line. In pain, but relief, I couldn’t believe I finish. A part of me felt like crying… I received my medals (medals because I completed both Thanksgiving runs hosted by Brazen Racing), and I downed a water, and ate as many orange slices as I could. I finished. I can’t believe I did it. 13.2 miles done. It wasn’t easy. It never really is. But I was disappointed. With myself, and careless, overconfident self. I spent about 30 minutes relaxing, on a bench reflecting on my performance, and also people watching.
Here are my (poor) results of my first half marathon. It kicked my ass. I didn’t really want to post this, being in embarrassment, but you know, this is a document, and memory of my performance. Good or bad, I this is my Journey To 30. It’s life, and this is how life is. It throws you curve balls, and obstacles. God won’t throw you anything you can’t handle. I knew I was capable of this half marathon. Although, I approached it with a careless, casual, and lackadaisical way….I was able to finish it. I’ve learned from my mistake of taking training lightly, and now I know how to approach these half marathons.
Take a look at these results. I plan to improve. Drastically. This is a promise I’ll give to those readers who follow my JourneyTo30. And also a promise to myself. I have plans for 2016. And completing a Half Marathon isn’t one of them. It’s stabilizing my health and fitness regimen, and immensely improving. I plan to crush is enter my 30’s. And just not in my 30’s……Forever on as I’m alive. To me, overly exceeding in being happy with yourself, including family and health is success. And….boy, oh boy, do I already feel rich in it. I’m only getting richer.
#CrushingIt not your average #JourneyTo30
My next half marathon is 2 days after Christmas. I’ve been training pretty hard. I don’t ever want to flatline, and fall into a sluggish mode during training ever.
Aim to improve. Everyday. And learn from your mistakes………….