Before I get into this post I just want to express to all of you that I'm not a "runner" & that this post is strictly just recapping my experience with the Nike Women's Half Marathon. If you would have told me that I'd be running 13.1 miles in a row for fun (& a Tiffany's Necklace) & that I'd actually enjoy it I wouldn't have believed you. Thanks to an awesome support system & some good old fashion willpower I was able to concur my first half marathon. I hope that this post will inspire you to truly go for something that you think is "out of your league" & totally knock it out of the park!
First things first, how'd I get into this mess?!? lol. As fate would have it the ONE time I agreed with Mona to run with the Nike Georgetown group was the night that they gave everyone the option of entering the race, which is really hard to get into (we still had to pay the $200 though). After hearing how lucky I was to have the opportunity I figured what the heck, let's do the damn thing! I had NO clue how to train for a half marathon, but Mona programmed my free Nike + Running App with the date of the race & the distance I had to run & the app did all the rest. Each week it would show me how much I should be running, logged my runs, & also cheered me on at every .5 miles which I absolutely needed!! Another element that made prepping for the race enjoyable, was training with my friend Morgan <3 Even though we didn't get to run together as much as we would've liked to, it was cool to know that we were both working really hard to reach the same goal. The night before the race she & I partook in a serious "Carbnado" aka a tornado of carbs at Lupo Verde to fuel us for the next day's racing activities :) We only got 4 hours of sleep the night before the race due to the fact that neither of us are capable of shutting up .. no really, I fell asleep in the middle of her telling me a random story. We woke up really freakin early ( 4:30AM!!) so that we could do a little yoga & stretch before heading to the race, & let me tell you I think that it made a HUGE difference. It was only 30 mins of yoga/stretching, but I felt very at peace & ready to take on the race after completing it. Oh yeah, one last little thing about prepping before the race, make sure to have all your stuff ready to go for the race the night before because the morning of the race you're not going to be thinking clearly lol.
Once we got to the starting area I was in full on OMGGGG I'm so excited mode :) Since it was my first time ever trying to run 13.1 miles (the most I'd run before the race was 8 miles) I stayed in the back with the 11:30 + group. I'm happy to report that for the first 10.5 miles I didn't stop once & kept an average pace of 10:23 per mile which was a lot better than I expected for my first race. It was also around that time that I had to go to the bathroom ... which was 2 MILES AWAY!!!! I wanted to run those 2 miles, but had to walk them which really slowed down my time :( Either way, after that pit stop I tried to get back into my rhythm which was a lot harder since my legs had started to cramp up. At around the 12.5 mile mark I saw David in the crowd which gave me an extra little burst of energy, shortly after that I was crossing the finish line babyyyyyy! That feeling of crossing the finish line after completing a 13.1 mile course was amazing, I couldn't believe how fast the time had flown by. The whole experience that morning was something I'll NEVER forget, there was so much love, determination, & support that I felt from all these ladies (a few random guys). One of my favorite parts of the race was high-fiving the other runners as we passed each other on the course, it was really encouraging & it made me feel like we were all on the same team .. wow I sound like I'm 5, deal with it! lol. Oh yeah, that Tiffany's necklace that we received after completing the race was pretty amazing too :) All that running had to be rewarded with a little grub, so we went to Brixton for lunch where I ordered a nice juice bacon cheese burger .. the End!