Saturday, November 29, 2014

488 Tangle Foot Turkey Trot Half Marathon

My very first half marathon was on Thanksgiving morning in New Albany, MS. It was a 7am start, and almost an hour and a half from home, so I was so thankful that my in-laws came up on Wednesday and took the kids back with them after our Thanksgiving feast.

It was so hard to fall asleep the night before, and it was even harder to stay asleep. I managed to get enough sleep though, and we were able to make it in time to get my packet and to realize just how cold the wind was blowing! Soooooo cold! It was bitter, but at least it wasn't raining. Small favors.

The course opened on a hill. Hills are my nemesis. It was rough going, but eventually the course evened out for the most part. I went in planning to allow myself to walk when needed. My rule was not to walk more than a minute per mile. And I stuck to it. I tried to keep my walks in 20 second increments. Any longer and my muscles might have refrozen. 

I set a lot of small goals. "That mailbox". And "that light pole". Even "that piece of trash". Just anything to keep my legs moving. Most times I would just set another goal, but sometimes I would reward myself with a short walk.

My thighs were numb. I kept my jacket on until almost mile 9. I knew we were coming to the trail portion, and I was really expecting the trees to keep the wind off. I was wrong. So wrong. But I had already transferred my bib to my tshirt, and I just did not feel like putting it back. It just seemed like too much work at the time. I argued it out in my head for a mile or so.

I had slacked off on training at the end. Sick kids and I just let myself get discouraged, so ten miles was my longest run going in to the half. The first ten miles were not bad. They were my fastest to date... but then there were 3.1 more to go. And if you believe my MapMyRun, 3.28 miles to go. At 13 I tried to speed it up. My legs were so dead it was probably one of the saddest kicks ever. 

BUT, I did it! I finished! Official time was 2:42:43. My goal was 2:45, so I am pretty happy with it. 

Walking to the car was not the best feeling ever. Or getting out of the car when we finally got home. But after some Excedrin I really wasn't feeling too bad. Other than the hidden chafing that came to light when I stepped in the shower. Ouch!

Today (the day after) was a totally different story. I woke up with my stomach cramping, which lasted most of the day. I slept most of the day away just trying to avoid feeling all the pain and soreness. I have really been dreading the St. Jude Half that is just a week away... but I have been assured that I will be feeling awesome by then. I sure hope so. I will cross another finish line on Dec. 6th no matter what!

At the beginning of this year I couldn't run a full minute without hurting. I just ran 13.1 miles. It hurts, but I did it! So happy I started this journey.

-Mississippi Running Momma