First of all, props to all who were involved in organizing and volunteering with this race. They were all amazing! The race was well organized and staffed. The route was done well…except for the hill around mile 11. That sucked, but so glad Bill was at the top to cheer us on and let us know all we had left was to turn the corner and go DOWN!
I went into this race with high expectations for myself. I didn’t want to, but they were there nonetheless. I always want to do my best, but in my heart of hearts, I wanted to kick bootie today! I wanted to beat my previous time of 2:51:14 and finish at a 2:50:00.
I felt good but got very nervous walking down to the corrals. I teared up and thought to myself, “why am I doing this again?!!” We got to our corral and had 25 minutes to wait. I was very glad I had brought a throw away sweat shirt because it was uber windy and cold. We had fun laughing and taking pictures in the corrals. Rich had our camera, so I’ll have to rely on others to post the pics on FB. 🙂
Finally, it was time to start! The gun went off and we…waited. LOL! It took us awhile to get to the start line. We also had to dodge everyone else’s throw aways all over the ground. It was crazy. My game plan was to stick with the group for the first few miles and stay at a 13 min. pace. I don’t know what happened, but Julie and I took off and before I knew it, we were heading down Broad St. at a pretty good clip. I think we were doing an 11:30 pace for awhile there. I kept thinking “we need to slow down. We’re going to fast.” It actually began to feel good after a few minutes, though. Even though I had drank enough water, I didn’t over hydrate not wanting to have to wait in the long line for a port a potty. I was parched running and was looking forward to the first water stop!
The mileage through Bexley was absolutely gorgeous! It was flat and there were a lot of spectators out and cheering us on. When we turned back on Broad, all I could think about was the Cinco de Julio race this summer where it was ungodly hot and I had to walk up that hill. Julie and I ran up it with no problems! I saw one of my colleagues at mile 6 who came to cheer me on halfway up the hill and that gave me some momentum.
We saw Rich and the kids at around mile 9 and then saw Reg just a little bit later. That gave both of us some energy! Icouldn’t believe that we were keeping the pace at an 11:45 to 12:00 per mile! I felt good and it was wonderful to have Julie there to keep me going. She had a burst of energy at mile 10 and I wished her well. My legs were getting heavy, but I trudged on at a decent pace. The hardest part of the race was the hill at mile 11.5. I made it part of the way up butdecided to stop and walk up the rest. I knew at that point that I was going to kill my previous time and my legs were burning!
Once I turned the corner and saw the finish line, I couldn’t help but smile as I ran downhill toward it. I had done it! I finished in 2:40:04. 11 minutes faster than my other half marathons! I was exhausted but exhilarated at the same time! I headed over to the MIT tent and was celebrated with my Lucky 13s and my wonderful family!
MIT is the most wonderful program! The training I have received as well as the friendships I have made have been wonderful and I am truly blessed to be a part of it!