Race Recap: Holiday Half Marathon

(yes, I ran this race a month ago. and yes, I am just blogging about it now…)

You guys! I ran my second half marathon! And although it wasn’t as emotional/happy/fast as my first half marathon, I still had a wonderful experience! And my little fan club totally rocked! Having Steven and my family meant so much to me – I loved having their support!

The story of the Holiday Half

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The race was in North Portland, which is totally my territory. We even ran past the University of Portland (my alma mater and current workplace) twice!

Screen shot 2012-12-06 at 9.49.02 AMI have never ran an out and back race before. It definitely has its advantages and disadvantages, but all around I loved how the course in North Portland.

So before the race, I didn’t feel prepared (remember this post?). And it was freezing! It was raining, there was wind. The weather was just all around miserable. But I did look fabulous in my tutu that my mom made me (don’t mind my 7 am, “I’m so cold” face.)

IMG_0806Steven (the best race boyfriend ever) patiently waited with me at the start as I freaked out/warmed up/freaked out some more/hydrated/became Croya because of the weather. At the start, all I could think about was “why would any on this earth want to run 13.1 miles in this cold and wind just for fun?”

The answer: Me and the red & white tutu.

Before I knew it, I was off!

IMG_0814Everything happened so fast, I don’t even think I comprehended what I was doing – I was just moving with the crowd. One of my main problems with this race was they did not have pacers or pace cards. So everyone lined up at the start, staggered every 30 seconds, and went off! So for the first couple miles, I was running into slow walkers and getting passed up by 8 min/mile runners. Everything seemed chaotic and for the first half of the race, I was running way faster than I anticipated. Instead of listening to my own running rhythm, I was trying to match my surroundings. That would later kick my butt…

Around mile 5 I saw Steven and my family outside of the University of Portland front entrance! 

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IMG_0818I was so happy to see them! I took my first stretch break, drank some Nuun, grabbed a Gu, and soaked up their positive energy! They had pom poms and bells and were cheering for everyone as they passed. With a course that had little support, my family was loud and proud of everyone!

Running into St. Johns was no big deal, I was feeling great! But then… the turnaround fiasco happened in my brain. I knew that we were running to Pier Park and that’s where the turnaround was… well I don’t know where Pier Park is! And of course I didn’t study at the course map, so for about 4 miles I was playing a very twisted game called “Where the $#&* is Pier Park?” And every black arrow is when I expected the turnaround to be…

Screen shot 2013-01-07 at 2So by the turnaround, it was of course pouring rain, and I felt defeated. Not only was I physically exhausted by running too fast, but I was mentally exhausted as well. Instead of just zoning out, I was so focused on the turnaround at Pier Park and keeping up with everyone around me. Lesson learned: just go with the flow!

The only thing that kept me going with getting to mile 10 where Steven and the family were waiting for me! 

Miles 7 – 10 were not my proudest moments as a runner. But I powered through. There were admittedly a lot of walking breaks, but at least I was still moving.

Mile 10 was glorious – I basically sprinted just to see my people! I can’t even describe the moment of seeing my family and Steven cheering for me…

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IMG_0834Only 3.1 miles to go! The Bluff was super windy and my fab tutu was flying everywhere. But I knew how close I was, I could just feel it. I’m really proud of myself on that last stretch, I really just went all out. I’m pretty sure it had to do with the fact that I was freezing and drenched in rain/sweat!

By this time I knew that I was going to finish slower than my first half – but whatever. No one care more about that than me, and honestly, time is nothing but a number!

IMG_0839My finish felt epic. There was a runner in front of me and I knew I wanted to pass her. So I did… beast mode extreme. 

CollageI finished with the beautiful time of…

2 : 47 : 01

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yes!This race was a great learning lesson. Some mistakes were made, but in reality it doesn’t matter. I ran my second half marathon, wore an epic tutu, and had my amazing boyfriend and family stand out in the rain/cold for 3 hours to support me.

I’m going to call this race a success!

HUGE thanks to my fan club for being there! I love you guys. 

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