Surprise! I Ran a Half Marathon!

So…remember when I said that I wasn’t going to race again until March 24th? Well, that was the plan.

Thing is, plans change. 😀

I’ve know about this race since I bought my “PR shoes” back in December. The store where I bought the shoes, On On Tri (Love!) sponsored the race, the GHS Centennial Half Marathon. (I wonder what they’re going to call it next year when it’s not GHS’ centennial any more…)

I decided not to do it though because it took place on the Swamp Rabbit Trail. I’ve run on the trail a few times before. 😀 Besides, the Greenwood Half Marathon was the same day. (At least I thought it was. It never was, even though they changed the date.) I would rather run in a new area.

I’d be lying, though, if I said I didn’t have a little race envy. I just kept reminding myself about the Greenwood Half and then the Clemson Half after that.

Then on Thursday I realized that the race was going to be run on the Swamp Rabbit Trail where I do my long runs. (Sometimes I’m a little slow at picking up on things.) It would be next to impossible (I thought then) to get my run done swimming upstream against hundreds of runners headed the opposite direction.

So I signed up…over the phone. Awesome customer service!

How did the race itself go?

Since it was a point to point race and the parking situation was iffy, Mom just dropped me off. (It wasn’t worth the hassle of finding a spot just to take a pre-race picture.)
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I had twenty minutes to kill before the start. I’m just glad I didn’t have to kill them standing in the port-o-potty line.
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I wore long sleeves and gloves because it was pretty chilly at the start. (Turns out I didn’t really need either of them once we started running.)

I told myself that I was not going to look at my Garmin the entire run and that this was just a regular long run. I’m not racing this. Just settle into a comfortable pace and stick with it.

The first few miles were absolutely wonderful. I had a smile on my face (I think) and quickly settled into an easy rhythm.

The awesome thing about that fact is that it didn’t change throughout most of the run.

I took my gloves off around mile 3 and tucked them into my waistband hoping they wouldn’t be a nuisance. I had to laugh when I couldn’t even feel them. I thought for sure that that would annoy me but I actually almost forgot they were there.

I truly enjoyed this race. The volunteers were wonderful and well-organized. The weather was spectacular. (Though a little warm for long sleeves.) I even high-fived a few kids who held out their hands for every runner that went by. I couldn’t help it.

When we finally left the trail around mile 11.5 I had a huge deja-vu moment and I knew it was coming. That’s where I felt the worst during the marathon. That’s where I had to walk and thought I would have to walk to the finish. It felt awesome to just run right through.

That last mile, though, felt like forever. It was all in my head though. Most races I’ve run in downtown finish around Flour Field. I still had .75ish to go when I passed it. I kept plugging away down main street. (By the way…Main Street looks really strange with no cars.)

When I turned onto McBee I glanced down at my Garmin. (That was the plan.) It was a pleasant surprise to see 1:54:XX on the screen with .2 miles left to go. I had no plans to go sub 2 hours but here I was about to beat my time from the Resolution Run. This was my “casual” pace after all.

Mom was able to snap a few pics as I came down the home stretch.
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(she thought she cut off my back foot and was happy to learn she didn’t :D)

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(I could tell which one was me even with the glare)

A few steps later and I finished half marathon #7 and totally grabbed air instead of the medal the volunteer tried to hand me. Nice. A couple fumbles later and I had it.
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(I love the design!)

Final time?
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Sweet!

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Finished and happy!

I loved this race and am so glad I decided to sign up last minute. On On Tri puts on a great event. The only thing I think they could have done better was to provide a tech T instead of a cotton t.

Can’t wait for my next half! (Btw…I do know I’m crazy and have a half marathon every other Saturday for the next month. Whoops :D)

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10 Comments

Filed under race recaps

10 responses to “Surprise! I Ran a Half Marathon!

  1. Way to go! Don’t worry about the every other week for the next month thing – yesterday was my 4th half of 2012. By far the best distance in my opinion. But I see that it was your 3rd and you clearly agree that it’s a great distance!

  2. Pingback: New River Marathon Training Week One | Stepping Out

  3. Pingback: New River Marathon Training | Stepping Out

  4. Great job!! Glad to find another blogger in the area!! Looking forward to following your training! And maybe we should get together and run on the trail some time?!

    • That would be pretty cool!
      I’m running the Greer 10k too but I’ll probably end up running from my house to the race and then back because I’ve got 20 miles scheduled for that day. 😀

  5. Pingback: “Greenwood Half Marathon” — race recap | Stepping Out

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