Monday, October 22, 2012

More running in the cornfields...

Whispering: You guys... I ran 13.1 miles yesterday.

I cannot believe I have completed my first half marathon.

It was technically my second long distance race, but the race I did earlier this spring was Dam to Dam and it was 12.4 miles just shy of a full half marathon, making yesterday's half,  my first half marathon!

Going into the race I had planned to run my typical ten minute intervals like I do all my long runs, but lately I have been running my short runs during the week without stopping to walk. We started the race and I figured I would just run the first three miles or so and see how I feel... after ten minutes passed I didn't feel like stopping at all. Then twenty minutes passed, and thirty, forty, fifty, sixty...all the way up to 2:10....  and I was still running! After I got to mile 7 and didn't stop, I began to think this could be either the smartest thing I have ever done... or the dumbest.

I was worried I was dumping too much into the beginning of the race and the second half would suck. I told myself at mile 10, I could stop and walk, but mile 10 came and I still didn't want to stop (go ahead, make the Forrest Gump jokes. I was thinkin' it too!)

I barely stopped for water (which bit me in the ass later) until mile 11. This was when I stopped to walk and drink water and eat an orange. I tried to get going again and find my groove like before but I just couldn't get moving. As soon as I stopped to walk, it seemed out of "nowhere" all the ache and soreness seemed to appear. I walked most of mile 11 and then for the last mile I ran.

Looking back, I did not drink enough water during the race. I took water with both GU packets, but barely any at all. My stomach was upset and the water and and GU was NOT helping. The entire race I was just focusing on how it was FINE and I did not need to stop and use the bathroom.... 

Here's how it all split out for me:

Mile 1: 11:38
Mile 2: 9:56 (no idea why this was so fast. Must have felt really good here!)
Mile 3: 11:40
Mile 4: 11:43
Mile 5: 12:21
Mile 6: 12:19
Mile 7: 11:39
Mile 8: 12:06
Mile 9: 12:39
Mile 10: 12:40
Mile 11: 12:32
Mile 12: 12:36
Mile 13: 14:04
Mile 14: 11:28

You might be wondering why I go through to mile 14. Well, I use the app Runkeeper (if you're on there, come be my friend!) and it said I ran almost 14 miles, so I'm not sure about that... but you can see  that 14 minute mile where I stopped to walk. It was actually mile 11 and then I picked it back up for mile 12. 

I really had such a good time, and I am incredibly proud of myself. For Dam to Dam (which was in June) I ran 12.4 miles in 2:50 and I hit a major wall at mile 9. I could not go anymore and I walked the rest of the way. For this half marathon I finished at 2:47 (10 minutes over my goal, but that is OKAY) and I am so incredibly proud that I ran the first 11 miles. I am in shock that I could keep going and so overjoyed with that feat! It is a little heartbreaking that I was just shy of running the entire thing, but considering I did not think running the entire thing was *ever* a possibility, I will absolutely take 11! 

Last fall when I was taking the PE Methods class I struggled to run ONE mile in under 13 minutes. A year later and I just ran 11 of them in a row at around a 12 minute average. Isn't that insane?! I am so in awe at what we can do when we put our minds to it and I am so grateful I have this ability. I will never take it for granted again.

I have so much to recap from this weekend, so I promise I will be back this week with a very picture heavy post recapping more about the half, my weekend with Lisa and much more!

Oh, and the headline is deceiving.... we did not see a single cornfield on this course. ;)


marisol said...

Congratulations! I am so happy & proud of you. You must hydrate on races. I walked a 12K (my longest race so far) and I was so nervous to have to use the porta-potties since over 40,000 people were participating in the race, that I didn't drink hydrate enough. It was a rather hot day in SF & as soon as i stopped walking, I felt so dizzy. I had to sit on the floor and drink water & eat an protein bar and that didn't help. It wasn't until I was in the cool shuttle bus that I was ok.

I gotta ask - what's your next race? They are pretty freaking addicting.

Lisa from Lisa's Yarns said...

Yah I learned early in racing about not drinking enough. It is tough! Now I force myself to drink a water and a Gatorade at most aid stations, even if I am not thirsty!

Congratulations!! I am SO proud of you!! You did an amazing job and have come so far in the past year!! Well done you!! Can't wait to see what you take on next!

Julie said...

Okay that's what the 13.1 stickers mean. I swear I've been seeing them more and more around town lately and I couldn't put a finger on what they meant - silly me! Congrats on your accomplishment :)

Marisa A. said...

Yay congrats again that is such a major accomplishment! Hope you are resting up and not hurting too badly today!! :)

Carolina John said...

Congratulations! That sounds like a blast.

Nora said...

Way to go and congratulations most definitely :)

Suz L said...

Congratulations!! I am so proud of you!! I certainly did not feel so joyous after my first half! You are making me want to do another one!

Stephany said...

You are such a rock star! You did AMAZING and it's crazy to see how far you've come in just a year. Way to go!!

Amber said...

hahaha I love your last line in this post ;)

I am SO PROUD of you Amber. Wow! Like you said, one year ago you struggled with a mile and now look at you go. I hope you are really, really, REALLY proud of yourself!

Donna said...

That's impressive that you ran so far without stopping, especially if you had planned to do a run/walk combo! I am going to take your hydrating lesson to heart when I train for my half-marathon next year.

Kelly (She Wears a Red Sox Cap) said...

Lol just laughed out loud about the cornfields since I was totally picturing you girls running through cornfields!

Anyway, I am SO proud of you! You are AMAZING! I actually thought you had done a half marathon before, that's how much of a runner you seem to me! You are very impressive for making it 11 miles without walking, that is SOOOO far! Congrats!

Unknown said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Unknown said...

Congratulations Amber! That is sooo awesome! You should be so proud. I started running over the summer and absolutely loved it. I have falled off the wagon a bit since it started to cool down, but I asked my parents for money for my birthday to get a gym membership so that I could get on a treadmill and keep up my worksout. I don't think I could imagine doing a half marathon, but am definitely going to make it a goal!
-Kari at

Becky said...

I'm SO proud of you!!!

Kyria @ Travel Spot said...

I am so freaking proud of you! That's awesome that you ran a half AND beat your 20k time! And, like you said, that one year ago you could barely run ONE mile at that pace and yesterday you ran 13 of them. You go girl! :)

Lesli said...

So proud of you!!!!!


The Many Thoughts of a Reader said...


chandra said...

You did AMAZING and I am so, so happy for you & proud of you!!

Cindii said...

Wow that's really good splits!!

BTW, I'm hosting a lip balm swap. Feel free to check it out and join!
lip balm swap

Shoshanah said...

I'm so proud of you! And hearing that you accomplished makes me feel like I could as well. Because I know I'm not a runner, and that you weren't a runner, and a half marathon seems so daunting. But knowing someone can go from not running to running a half marathon a year later is really inspiring.

Alexson said...

Awesome job! So...when's your next one? ;)

Crazy Shenanigans-JMO said...

You rocked it girl!!! Congrats!

Jessica Lawlor said...

Congratulations Amber! This is so inspiring especially since today starts my half marathon week! Eeeks! You really rocked this half....awesome splits.