Woohoo…half marathon #6 completed!
We started off my traveling into the city Friday afternoon where I took in the expo sans kiddies and took zero photos, whoops! It was a in a new location which I hadn’t noticed in any of the emails so that threw me off a bit. It was a packed expo with so many great booths to visit. I ran into some runner friends which is always a bonus.
Saturday, I took the girls to the 2k youth run. Our youngest didn’t love it and really just wanted to walk and our oldest just wanted to run. We compromised with a run/walk combo since it was just me with them. They had a blast and their favourite part was getting the food after and acquiring multiple tattoo’s at the expo (again).
I was really nervous about this half. Last week I did the following runs: Monday – rest day, Tuesday 6k, Wednesday 5k, Thursday and Friday rest days and Saturday 2k – well 1.74km with the girls. I was feeling under trained – which shouldn’t be a surprise if you’ve been following along for the last 10-12 weeks. It was what it was and I was running it whether I felt trained or under trained.
Saturday was beautifully hot and sunshine for hours for the youth run and 5k that afternoon. Come Sunday morning, it was pouring rain and temps were expected to be 12c. It ended up being a little warmer at 15c but still lots of rain. I didn’t know what to wear so put on my shorts, tank/long sleeve shirt and Tiux socks. I brought my running jacket and long pants just in case. I ended up changing from my shorts to long pants in the car and wore my tank, long sleeved shirt AND my running jacket – a little warm for all that but it was good for the first 8k of my run.
My friend Sarah was running her first half marathon (and did awesome), so we drove in together and hung out in the dry car before making our way over to the Scotiabank Centre in our poncho’s that kept us dry. After a few bathroom breaks and running into friends (my friend Tracey was running and did awesome as well). We went up to the start area around 8:08 am for a 8:20 start as we didn’t want to stand in the rain for a long time.
As the gun went off we moved forward only to be halted by the crowd in front. I always laugh at this because it happens at every race. Have you experienced that before? We cross the start mat and beeped our Garmins to start. It was crowded but that’s expected. Sarah and I ran together for the first 10 minutes and then she moved onto a 10/1’s while I did continuous. We would catch up to each other over the first 3-4k and then she eventually move forward but I could pick her out in the distance up ahead because of her hat and socks.
Around the 5k mark my Garmin beeped so I went to look at it and rolled my right ankle. No joke! Frig! I just kept moving forward and tried not to think about it and managed to run off the pain for the time being. We ran through Point Pleasant Park which was beautiful and relaxing by the water. The first BIG hill of 300 meters (0.3km) was approaching and my thought was to just push it as far as I could. I managed to run the whole thing which gave me a little confidence boost for a later HILL I would be climbing.
We ran the streets of Halifax and I was feeling really good. I was a little worried about my pace which was 6:38/km roughly from 1-11km. It just felt good and then it didn’t. It started to go downhill around 12k and I went through every thought of:
- just keep one foot in front of the other
- run and be happy
- you can do this
- I hate this
- I never want to run a half again
- just walk for a few seconds
- I hate this
- suck it up and just run
From km 12 – 18 roughly, I hated it. It was hill after hill, and I’m not just talking about little hills. These were BIG hills you had to climb forever!!! For the most part I feel I did a good job on the hills except the biggest hill and that killed me. Each time I though we were making our way to the finish area, the route would take us in an opposite direction.
When I ran this half in 2006, the route was completely different. This year they used the same route as previous years (not 2006 route) but reversed the direction. This is the main reason why I wanted to run it. I’ve learned that for the Bluenose Half Marathon it really doesn’t matter what direction you are running in because you are just going to hit hill after hill. You need to be ready for lots of hills.
I gave up a lot…like a lot. I had no drive, no energy, no interest in running – which you kinda need while running a half marathon. I really wasn’t loving it but I kept moving forward be it running or lots of walking.
Around 18k it started to pour and the wind picked up. My face was tucked under my Nuun visor but the wind was strong and blew the rain up in my face. Nothing on me was dry….I just kept running – one foot in front of the other. “You are done soon. You are almost there”. I chatting with other runners as they approach me or I approach them. I thanking volunteers and police officers who were blocking traffic in the rain! I tried to enjoy the moment even though I was struggling. I had many, many thoughts on this run.
The funny thing is, I was expecting to finish around 2 hours 30 minutes and finished under it but was so hung up on how much I had to walk and that I had no desire to run. With the rain pouring down and feeling like a kid playing outside, I managed to turn my sour-puss attitude around and enjoy the last 3k in the rain.
I thanked one of the last police officers and he said “your welcome and enjoy the remainder of the race”…I smiled and said “I will” because it was a fast downhill and then uphill to the finish. As I cruised down Cogswell Street and onto Brunswick Street to finish – close to the finish line I saw my friend Kerri who called out my name (she’s involved in the youth event) and it made me smile and just enjoy the finish shoot. I turned off my Garmin and volunteers were there giving high-fives. It took everything in me to raise my arms for three high fives – ha! I was done!
I met up with Sarah as she finished just ahead of me. We hit up the food station and then got a massage!!! I’ve never gotten a massage at a race. I was soaked from the rain and sweat, salty as heck and I stunk – I just ran a half marathon – you can’t not stink after running that long. the massage was worth it.
I finished in 2:25:44 (chip time).
That’s it! Half marathon #6 done with no races scheduled for the rest of the year! I was thinking about running a race in June but have decided I need to regroup, slow down and not race for a while….I think 😉 I want to pace a few fall races as I really enjoyed that. Oh, and my ankle is okay. Slightly swollen and sore but nothing a few days of ice and rest can’t fix.
Congrats to all those who ran the Bluenose Marathon (5k, 10k, 15k, half, full and youth run) – what a great weekend for runners in Nova Scotia!
How was your (long) weekend?
Anyone race this weekend? How’d it go?
When was the last time you rain a race in the rain?