I signed up for the lottery to be in the Ogden Half back in November and got in! I never wanted to do a half before, but after having Alex, I knew I needed something concrete (and especially something I paid for) to help motivate me to get back in shape. Since I also wanted to keep nursing, I knew that I would need to eat lots to keep my milk while running and burning all the calories. This wasn't a problem for me:)
I've never enjoyed running. When we did the triathlons in Africa, the running was always the worst part for me. In training I think I got up to running about 5 miles but that was it. I always have a side stitch and the first 3 miles were just so hard. While starting my training (which is SO hard with two kids by the way, especially with one that nursed every 2 hours for his first 5 months of life), it was so hard and I definitely almost threw in the towel a couple of times. But thanks to my neighbor and friend Michelle, she got me out and we went 5 miles and I LOVED it. The last 2 miles were awesome and I felt like I could go for a long time. This was the first glimpse I had that I could actually do it.
I probably only ran a couple times a week and then did my long runs on Saturday with Ben. I did 6 miles, then 7, then 8, then 9! I was in total awe that I ran 9 miles. Such a good feeling to accomplish a seemingly impossible goal of mine. We skipped 10 and did 11 miles a few weeks before the race. Then we got sick, started to pack and move and pretty much only ran once or twice before the race. I thought I'd blown it and was really worried about how I'd do.
The day before the race I had a wedding, but I carbo-loaded for lunch and then had take-out spaghetti on my drive home from Salt Lake. I went to bed early in Huntsville and woke up at 6am to eat some toast, a SlimFast, and stretch. I also took a pain killer (and saved one for a couple miles into the race). I got to the race at 6:45 just as it was starting and basically ran from the car to the starting line and then just kept running. It was wet and raining, but I didn't mind it at all. The first uphill section was a breeze! I thought I'd have to walk up it, but as I was running I kept looking around to make sure I was still going uphill because I was just flying (in my mind) and the hill didn't phase me or even make me winded. I forced myself to stop for 30 seconds to walk every mile even though I didn't feel like stopping. When we got to the canyon, the rain started POURING, it was unbelievable! But I LOVED it. My earphones wouldn't stay in my ears because they were too wet so I just put my music away. I would stop about every other water station for about 10 seconds to drink some Powerade but I pretty much ran the entire thing. I felt so awesome. Especially mile 7 and 8, and 9, at the bottom of the canyon I was going really fast (under 10 minute miles--which for me, is fast).
When I hit about mile 10, my knees started really aching and my right ankle. I just kept pushing and still felt awesome. I never felt winded or really tired.
Here I'm coming by Monroe and Ben was up over the bridge (I'm in the purple):
I was worried that the last mile or 2 would be awful but they weren't. The last mile just seemed to go forever, but I still felt great and was able to pick up my speed and "sprint" (again, sprint to me).
So wet and loving it!
I felt so awesome. I finished!! And my goal was 2:30, which I thought was totally unrealistic but I got 2:18! After the race I was sooo cold and couldn't warm up. We went back up to my parent's house and I literally sat in the hot tub for like 2 hours. It felt amazing and I basically fell asleep. Yum.
My knees (especially my left one) were sore for about a week after and I really didn't catch the "bug" of wanting to do more. Maybe after the next kid... who knows, but for now, I'm good to stick to 5Ks :) Oh and I still will NEVER be doing a full marathon. Never. You can definitely count on that. My body is not made for that. Anyway--so so so happy!!!