What a very fun weekend, my friends. I’m sending total kudos out to those of you who kept your fingers crossed and prayer arms folded. I was able to roll out of bed on Saturday morning and felt much less bloated and sore and was all about that anxious, nervous, and excited energy as I had breakfast and dressed for my half marathon. My alarm went off around 4:45 am that morning and most other days, I’d slap the snooze, but I was a pent up ball of excitement, ready to get the day rolling.
Michael (what a good sport, seriously) picked me up at 6am sharp, and we made our way downtown Salt Lake City to the race location. We made it there with 20 minutes to spare and hung out in his car, watching the marathon-ites jog back and forth in the parking lot, warming up their bodies for the race ahead. I can see the value in a little warm up, but some of them just became a little overwhelming. If I had another 13 miles to run after my first, I’d rather conserve my energy… but hey, that’s just me!
We had a MUCH larger outcome of participants this year than last year and you could feel the familiar buzz in the air just before the gun went off. I just hoped that my body could handle 13.1 miles, having not been through a training schedule as strict as last year.
By mile 5, my calves were beginning to tense up and I adjusted my pace accordingly and paid extra attention to my body posture and stride. 8 more miles seemed tenuous and almost impossible to me, but I kept on with it and didn’t slow or stop. I kept repeating the word “Fighter” in my head. That has become my power word and helps me find any ounce of inner strength hiding out. I put it all out there and kept running.
The last miles passed rather slowly for me, but I made it to the end and was thrilled to finish the race with a new PR for myself: 1:51:11 (more than 5 minutes faster than last year’s HM time). Michael snapped pictures away as I came in and afterwards. I grabbed some nourishment and nearly inhaled the Creamy popsicle and banana. I picked up a finisher’s medal and put it on, feeling so victorious– that I could even make it to the race, that I could finish without stopping, and that Michael was there to support me.
After hours of laying around, Michael and I got dressed up for a date. He surprised me with a nice dinner at Market Street Grill (I’m a total seafood snob) and seeing the Classical Mystery Tour w/ the Utah Symphony. Afterwards, we shared a celebratory slice of raspberry mousse cake at a local bakery downtown.
It was, indeed, a wonderful day.