Wednesday, September 26, 2012

13.1 Miles

One of my New Years resolutions was to run a half marathon. In January, I started training. At the time I could run about 0.25 miles straight. After a few weeks, I worked my way up to a full mile, and I was probably at about a 13 min mile pace. Over the next few months, I increased my mileage and decreased my time until I ran a 10K in June in just over an hour. Each week, my time would drop and I would feel better and better. My original goal to run the half marathon was two and a half hours. But as my time started dropping, I changed my goal to two hours and twenty minutes.

But then a "little complication" came up. A little thing called pregnancy. For the first few weeks, nothing really changed and I was feeling really good. But then I started feeling really sick and the last thing I wanted to do was go running. On days that I was feeling good, I would run, but it took far more energy than normal. Instead of coming home and feeling great after a run, I would come home exhausted and barely able to function for the rest of the day.

Needless to say, it took a serious toll on my running. Instead of running 5-7 miles per day, I was only doing 2-3 miles once or twice a week.

The closer the race got, the more nervous I became. But even though I felt very unprepared, dropping out was not even an option. But I definitely needed to alter my goals a little bit. Instead of shooting for 2:20 finish time, my goal became simply to finish....without having to crawl over the finish line.

A week before the race, I did a long 7 mile run (without stopping to walk/take breaks). It took me about 1.5 hours. Somehow it made me feel slightly better about the race, but at the same time slightly worse. That was barely over half the distance and I felt like I could barely walk afterwards.

A girl in my ward was also running it, so we went together, We had to wake up by 5am to go catch the bus to the start line.
Keep in mind this is 5am. And yes, I look scary.
I was exactly 14 weeks pregnant.
The line was insanely long and we didn't get up the canyon until after 6:30am. And it was quite cold up there. You could tell who had experience running races by how creative and prepared some people were. Like several were smart and wore garbage bags to keep them warm, so when you got hot, you just took them off and threw it away (don't have to worry about losing nice clothes). Some wore socks over hands, and again just discard as needed.
The race started and I was feeling pretty good. I was happy for the cooler temperatues because I knew I would be sweating in no time. There were restrooms/water stops every 3 miles or so. I almost stopped at the first one, but made the mistake and decided to wait until the next one at mile 6. Well apparently so did EVERYONE else. There was a HUGE line and only 4 restrooms. But I didn't think I could go another 3 miles, so I jumped in line. No exaggeration, I waited about 13-15 minutes just to use the restroom! It was painful watching so many people pass while I was just standing there thinking about how much it time was passing.

About mile 8 I was really starting to feel it and had to start walking every once in a while. I tried to walk for 1 song (or less), then run for 3 songs straight. It helped, and somehow, I kept going. About mile 10, I was ready to die. My ankles hurt, my knees ached, and I wasn't sure I could take another step. I was so ready to just sit down and give up, but I didn't want to face everyone if I didn't finish. So I continued on. I was almost in tears for the last 2 miles, I was hurting so bad. And it hurt just as much to walk as it did to jog, so I tried to jog as much as possible to avoid prolonging the agony.

At last the finish line was in sight. It seemed like it took me forever to get to it, but I did. I was even able to push a little the last bit and make it just under 3 hours. My "official" finish time was 2:59, though I hate to admit that. I was tracking the whole thing on my phone also, and I paused it for that long wait for the bathroom. My phone said I finished that is what I am going by. It's not nearly as well as I wanted to do, but it's not terrible for being 14 weeks pregnant and having the last 2 months of training disrupted. Plus, it'll make it easier to beat next time, right?
But perhaps the very worst part of the entire thing was walking back to the car once the race was over. Lance had to park about a mile away (it was probably less, but seemed like 10 at the time) and my legs were not cooperating.

Unfortunately Lance didn't make in time for when I crossed the finish line. I don't think he was expecting how far away he would have to park. He got there shortly afterwards though. And he made up for it when we got home by having a bouquet of beautiful flowers waiting, plus he bought me a bike trailor!

It was a great experience and I am glad I did it. Yes, it was very difficult, but I set out to accomplish my goal and I did- I finished. I had some GU packs to eat throughout the race, but they were so gross I couldn't stand it. Next time, I need to find something to eat/drink throughout the race to restore my energy and keep me going better. Believe it or not, I do plan on running it again. But not while pregnant.

1 comment:

  1. 14 MONTHS pregnant go talk to your doctor ;) Oh my I do not look good early in the morning. but you did AWESOME I totally would have dropped out if I was preggo. YOu are AMAZ:ING!!!