Saturday I ran the Summerfest Rock ‘n’ Sole quarter marathon. I woke up a little after 5 AM (!) and it was pouring. Talk about demoralizing. I had to keep reminding myself that I’ve run in worse weather than that. (I ran during a Wisconsin winter, after all!)
My mom showed up to the house at about 5:30, and I woke the boys up and we got ready to head down to the lakefront. Drake was a real champ; he usually wakes up at about that time anyway, but we usually nurse for awhile in bed. He seemed totally fine with getting ready and going in the car instead, which was a relief. Getting to see Grandma right away probably helped!
We got down there a little after 6, and Kevin dropped us off so my mom and I could go to where I was supposed to meet my running group. Unfortunately, I didn’t see anyone from the group. We waited around until we spotted Kevin and Drake looking for us, so we met up with them and then headed towards the start corrals. The corrals were in alphabetical order from fastest to slowest, and I was in corral K, which should tell you something about my running speed. 😛 Corral K was for a 2:20 half-marathon pace (1:10 quarter marathon.)
There was a lot of excitement in the air as the race started, but of course I had to walk for several minutes before even getting to the starting line because there were so many runners ahead of me. I kept reminding myself to TAKE THINGS SLOW. I always seem to start out too fast at races because of all the excitement and nervous energy. Well, despite my reminders, I did the same thing this time. On top of that, the course was pretty hilly, since we were running onto the freeway and going over a large bridge. The rain had stopped before the race started, but less than halfway into the race I was wishing it would start again.
I did all right for awhile, maintaining my distance behind the 2:20 pacers (with their big helpful sign that said “2:20”) pretty well, but at around 3.25 miles or so, after we turned around to get back on the bridge (uphill again!), my energy really started flagging and the pacers were WAY ahead of me. I really tried to talk myself into running at least to the 4-mile marker, but eventually I just had to walk for awhile. I started running again when the 2:30 pacers passed me. Once I made it to the crest of the bridge and started going downhill, things were a little easier again.
I did have to walk again for a bit during mile 6 (which, by the way, I’m pretty sure was way more than a mile. 😛 Actually, I think they all were. I probably ran about 50 miles that day.) Finally I was able to run the last 3/4 of a mile or so. I passed my family on the sidelines cheering for me, then rounded a corner and there was the finish line! I finished in 1:17:18, an 11:48 minute/mile pace. Not as fast a pace as the 10k I ran in March (which was about 11:30), but not too bad considering all the walking I did.
I even got a medal, which I wasn’t expecting; I thought only the half-marathoners got those!
One thing that was cool is that a woman won the quarter marathon! (No, not me. I came in 1665th place out of 2090.) It was Ariana Hilborn; she’s 32 and has run in the Olympic marathon trials, and she’s only been running since 2007! It’s awesome to see someone who, like me, didn’t run at all in high school or college, and now she’s an elite runner! I doubt I’ll ever get to that point, but it’s still pretty inspiring. 🙂
Three weeks till half-marathon training starts! I’m going to try to keep doing at least two 3-3.5 mile runs during the week, and a 4-5 mile run on Saturdays, since we have to run 4 miles on the first day of training, and a mile further every week after that. I ran 3 miles today, which is the first time I’ve run since the race. Just gotta keep it up!
So apparently (as I found out this morning) today is National Running Day! In honor of that, I’m going to run 3 miles tonight. Just kidding, actually I would have been running 3 miles tonight even if it weren’t National Running Day. I’m currently training for my second 10k race (actually a quarter marathon, so 6.5 miles instead of 6.2). I’ll be running in the Rock ‘n’ Sole quarter marathon in a week and a half, which looks like a really cool course.
I’ve discovered a new favorite way to do my runs; instead of running in a big loop starting and ending at the same point, I’ve found that I really enjoy being dropped off at one location and then running to my destination. There’s sort of an element of survival to it; if I don’t keep running, I won’t get home (or wherever)! I suppose “run or die” would be a bit dramatic, since I’m usually running in areas packed full of civilization.
For example, a few weeks ago, we ate dinner at my in-laws’ house, then I left Kevin and Drake there and ran 5.5 miles home. I even had to add a few extra zig-zags to bring the mileage up to 5.5. Now that I can run that kind of distance, it’s surprising to learn how close certain places are to me. Running from my house to my parents’ house would be less than 5 miles! No problemo.
My next goal is going to be a half-marathon. I’ve already signed up for the Brewers Mini Marathon, so there’s no turning back now! (Unless I want to be out $65, I guess.) Several of the people in my current training group are planning to train for that one too, so it’ll be fun to all train together again for the half. There’s a three week gap between my upcoming race and the start of half training, so I’m going to have to be diligent about maintaining my ability to run at least 4 miles (since that’s the distance we run on the first day of half training.)
I’m a little apprehensive about running during the summer. A few weeks ago, our group run was on a warm day in the mid-to-upper 80s, and I made it about 2 miles before I had to stop and walk. I ended up hitching a ride with the coach back to the running store. (I made up for it the next evening with the aforementioned run home from the in-laws’, however.) I just don’t have a lot of heat tolerance. I realized recently that my face doesn’t really sweat, which is probably part of the reason it gets EXTREMELY red during my runs. I may start carrying some water just to splash on my face to help cool it off, and I’ll probably stick to running in the evenings or the early morning when the temperature is a bit cooler.
I’m gonna try to update more often, since I’m doing so poorly on my “52 posts in a year” resolution. Perhaps a picture of the Servo sweater progress tomorrow. (Yeah, that’s not done yet either.)