Shock. Awe. Pride. Exhaustion. Excitement.
I did it!
I ran...yes...ran...the whole way...13.1 miles on Sunday. I finished the Long Branch Half Marathon! And I did it in 2:07:01 (officially).
All week, I'd been down on myself. After Easter, my committment to training really went downhill. Actually, it wasn't so much my committment as much as it was my follow-through that petered out! Last week, I ran Tuesday. 5 miles. On a treadmill. That's it. I figured that running the Half Marathon on Sunday would be a joke. It'd end up walking half of it and doing my best just to beat the sweeper van. Boy, did I surprise myself!
Sorry, but there aren't any pictures. At least not yet. Maybe the "pro" got one or two shots and eventually, I'll post them. But I went with Cool Shannon and her husband and all three of us were running. There were no fans there taking pictures of us. We actually didn't even see each other finish. But we did start together and Shannon and I did run together the majority of the way.
Oh...and did I mention that it was 50+ degrees and raining? Not exactly what I had in mind for the day, when I signed up for a race down at the shore!
It was such a great experience, though. The whole town of Long Branch was taken over by this race. There were crazy runners dressed in wild outfits: Superwoman, Irish Kilts, Powder Blue Tuxedos, etc. There were also runners EQUALLY crazy wearing barely ANY outfits! The race started (and finished) right on the boardwalk. Once we hit the streets, it was great to run past houses with their radios blaring "pump up" music out the windows...past couples cheering from their front porch while sipping their morning coffee and reading the paper...past fans ringing cow bells...past kids on the side of the road "giving away" high fives. It wasn't until mile 9 (when Shannon and I started to drift apart) that I missed my walkman. Even though the weather wasn't picture perfect, hitting that boardwalk still gave an extra boost of energy and seeing those waves roll in were a GREAT distraction from the aching muscles. Seeing that finish line and hearing the announcer start calling out names, I think I might have even picked up my pace a little for the last tenth of a mile or so.
Sure...I'm sore today...but my spirits haven't damped. I'm definitely doing another Half Marathon...at some point...someday. Not sure I'll be doing a FULL marathon anytime soon. It would take a lot more training. Training that I couldn't do until the young ones are in some sort of school. But for now...I've found my "niche": 13.1 miles!
****updated with a few of the proofs...as in proof that I need to work on my facial expressions while running!****
Yes...I look like I'm dying...I was!
Still dying...and the guy behind me's picking his wedgie!
I'm surprised I had the presence of mind to stop my watch!
I'm SOMEWHERE in there...
How cool, right?