TBT: My First Half Marathon (2006)

I thought it would be fun (for me) to look back at my first half marathon in 2006. I ran the Bluenose Marathon in Halifax, Nova Scotia. I think that’s when I think I really got bit by the running bug.

I didn’t always want to run a half but after running a few 10k’s I thought it would be fun! Yes, FUN! So, I registered in January and starting my training for the May long weekend event. I was living in Ontario and would have to fly home – sounds good to me!

So, I was training; cross-country skiing, snow shoeing and running. I met my (little did I know) future husband who also ran, skied, hiked, rock climbed etc. while working at the Outdoor Centre. I was surrounded by active people and a handful of runners.

My training was all done on hills! Since I lived at the camp, you had to drive in the camp road which was rolling hills. Big hills, little hills and long stretches, not to mention a lot of wildlife. I trained as much as my schedule would allow and did a lot of my runs during “happy hour” 4:30-5:30. If it was a hot day I would jump in the lake before heading up to the dining hall for dinner. Life was pretty good!

My longest run was 19k before the half and I remember running back along the camp road after 9:30pm thinking that I was crazy! Also, I was a little freaked out about the bears that I could potentially “meet” so I ran that last stretch pretty fast. I also remember some of my staff members were getting a little worried about me and were about to come find me.

Going into the race my only plan was to run 10 minutes and walk one. As we lined up at the start area I remember thinking, I should probably find a pace bunny to stick with. So, I chose the 2 hour 30 minute bunny. I stuck with her until the 15k mark and then lost sight slowly. I also had my first GU and thought it was terrible – not so much anymore!

We had to run up the steepest hill in Dartmouth called Maple Street. As I approached it I saw an ambulance with its doors open and the Paramedics were treating a runner. Needless to say, I was a little freaked out!

At km 19k we crossed back over the bridge and to the finish area. Let’s just say I wasn’t too happy that I still had to run 2 more kilometers after that but somehow managed to do it.

A few pictures from the race:

First Half Marathon Bluenose 2006

My Dad drove around the course to snap these shots of me and then met me at the finish. My mother was volunteering and gave me a blanket since I finished the half. The year before when I ran the 10k, she wouldn’t give me one since they were only for half and full marathoners – maybe that’s why I challenged myself to the half – just to get a space blanket from her ๐Ÿ˜‰ ย The things parents do for their grown-up kids.

Finish time: 2:33:56

Pace: 7:13 (I believe)

After that race I changed my mind about half marathons. I figured I’d to another one someday but didn’t think it would take me this long to get back at it!

Things I have learned since my first half:

  • I am a different person
  • I’ve trained a lot more
  • I have a husband and TWO beautiful daughter’s
  • I am loving running (physically, mentally, emotionally)
  • I’ve met some amazing people because of running and because of our girls
  • I am more prepared for this half marathon
  • I like GU’s now
  • I am comfortable running in running clothing (not soccer shorts and t-shirts as I did years ago)
  • I know I can go the distance
  • I really need to buy a new running jacket and winter running pants – those are both over 8 years old ๐Ÿ˜‰

This weekend I am super pumped, scared, excited, nervous, energized and happy to be running my 2nd half marathon. Thanks for reading my weekly recaps. Your comments have helped me learn and grow as a runner and person.

Anyone racing this weekend?

Do you remember your first BIG race?

Do your family members volunteer at your runs?