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Shout out to the walkers of the world! 

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I thought being forced to walk my fourth Half Marathon due to injury was the worst thing in the world… But I actually ended up having a blast.

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Let me tell you – walking a Half Marathon is HARD.  In many ways, it was less exhausting than running 13.1 miles, but my legs hurt in entirely different ways and places, especially along the sides and in my hips. 

 

My final time was 3:33, which is about 1:35 slower than my Half PR.  I averaged 16:20 a mile and placed 7,396.  :)

 

Race morning started off a little differently than it normally does – no need to stress out about eating the ‘right’ thing and bathroom-ing.  Instead, I happily munched on half a huge NYC bagel with a thick slather of cream cheese (I would’ve avoided the dairy if I had run the Half) and a banana.  I also slept in about thirty minutes longer than I would have otherwise!

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We hopped in a cab and were transported to Central Park.  This race seemed very organized (New York Road Runners clearly has it going on).  Although I was seeded into a higher corral, Jen, Gabriela, and I headed to the last corral since we planned to walk the entire race (Gabriela was injured, too, and Jen came down with a cold yesterday).

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Can I just say how low-stress walking a race is?  Normally, I get really worked up about pace and timing and fueling, but I happily just strolled along with the girls, laughing and chatting the entire way.

 

The course was two loops, and around Mile 4.0, the leader whizzed by – she was FAST.  No one was behind her for at least 10 minutes!

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We ran into other runners who were sponsored by Thomas Bagel Thins, including this awesome 70 year-old lady named Elaine who has run over 110 marathons.  I asked her for advice and she said “Pick out what you want to do with life, and goddamnit, just do it!”  Word up, Elaine.

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The course was beautiful (and hilly), and in some ways, I’m glad I walked it because I got to experience Central Park in a way that I wouldn’t have if I had been running.

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Other things that were different about walking instead of running: 

 

I drank about four cups of Gatorade during the race, but no Gu.  I never really got hungry the way I do when I’m running (but I still needed the fuel).

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My fingers swelled up like little sausages (from the blood rushing down my arms).

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So I spent half of the race with my arms above my head!

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My quads got really, really tight (well, that happens when I run a Half, too), but I felt like I had ‘time’ to stop and do some yoga.  Downward dog for life!

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Oh, and…

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We stopped and bought a soft pretzel around Mile 6.0  It was delicious and hit the spot.

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Around Mile 10, I got really antsy.  I just wanted to be DONE.  When we saw the Mile 13 markers, we all decided to run to the finish line.

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I must say, it felt good to move my legs in a different way!  I still love running the most.  :)

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Grabbed our medals and high-tailed it to the Whole Foods, which was easily the most gigantic one that I’ve ever seen. 

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Refueled with coconut water and a lovely hot bar selection.

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At the end of the race, I learned a very important lesson… Whether you run or walk, the medal around your neck feels the same

 

I’m proud of my fourth Half Marathon, and I’m especially proud of the fact that I listened to my body and didn’t push through an injury.  I want to run for many, many years, and I have to respect my limits.

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What a wonderful race!

{ 151 comments }

 

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  • Victoria (District Chocoholic) April 3, 2011, 1:51 pm

    Maybe you have a future as a competitive power walker.

    Reply
  • Ashley April 3, 2011, 1:52 pm

    Congrats on your race! Elaine looks amazing and is so inspiring!! And you are too! :)

    Reply
    • Samantha Angela @ Bikini Birthday April 3, 2011, 9:48 pm

      Indeed!
      That Elaine chick is SO inspiring. I can see you being her in the future Caitlin!

      Reply
      • Sami April 5, 2011, 8:19 pm

        I am one of Elaine’s 7 children (One of her FAVORITE ones!) and I have to tell you…..she really IS inspiring. Thanks for the wonderful comments.

        Reply
  • Jenny @ Fitness Health and Food April 3, 2011, 1:52 pm

    Caitlin,

    Congrats on your first race walk! I thought you might enjoy the sights more at a slower pace. I always really admire walk racers because they spend much more time on the road and on their feet. I think it can take more dedication to be a race walker! So glad it went well! :)

    Reply
  • VeggieGirl April 3, 2011, 1:54 pm

    MAJOR congratulations!!

    Reply
  • Amanda April 3, 2011, 1:55 pm

    I can’t imagine that it was easy to watch so many other people run the race that you were signed up to run, but I have to say that you are such an inspiration! The majority of people would likely just not show up for the race and hold a pity party, but you seized a new opportunity!! Glad the weather was great and you had fun company!!!

    Reply
  • Ali @ Ali on the Run April 3, 2011, 1:55 pm

    Great outlook — and I’m glad you got to enjoy Central Park! So glad I ran into you ladies. You’re all awesome. Wear that medal with pride!

    Reply
  • Evan Thomas April 3, 2011, 1:56 pm

    Oh man, if Eliane was a blogger that’d be awesome.
    Congratulations on finishing! Way to show that you can still succeed when life throws you curveballs.

    Reply
  • hippierunner April 3, 2011, 1:57 pm

    Great job Caitlin! That is awesome that you had so much fun! I love that you stopped to get a pretzel!

    Reply
  • Holly @ The Runny Egg April 3, 2011, 1:59 pm

    Great job! I love that you stopped for a pretzel. That is hilarious!

    Reply
  • Jillian@ Reshape Your Life April 3, 2011, 2:00 pm

    Congratulations! I know it must have been hard to not run, but at least you still got out there and did it. There is a first for everything! I hope your leg starts feeling better soon though!

    Reply
  • chelsea April 3, 2011, 2:02 pm

    So Awesome :) Walking that far is tough! My hubby and I once did a 14 mile hike in the mountains in one day and its was hard! Near the end I could walk let alone think! And how awesome is it that you got a pretzel!! Hello awesome Thanks for all the inspiration :)

    Reply
  • Zo April 3, 2011, 2:06 pm

    What an awesome post, Caitlin! Your attitude is really inspirational. I just signed up for my first 5k and was thinking about how maybe I’d try the More/Fitness race next year, but that I don’t know if I’ll be up to 13.1 miles of running. That’s something to work for, but if I walk some or all of it, so what?

    BTW, any chance Elaine has a blog?

    Reply
    • Caitlin April 4, 2011, 9:54 pm

      She does not but I’ll be interviewing her on my blog soon, so stayed tuned!

      Reply
  • Tonyne @ Unlikely Success Story April 3, 2011, 2:06 pm

    Awesome job Caitlin! This seems like one of your happiest race recaps, definitely a more relaxed feel. I know you were disappointed not to run it, but I’m so glad you enjoyed walking it!

    Looking forward to meeting you next week at Rugged! :)

    Reply
  • Dee April 3, 2011, 2:08 pm

    Wow! It all sounds so amazing! Congrats on completing the whole half walking/running! There is seriously so much awesome in the post. Thanks so much for sharing. :)

    Reply
  • Katy (The Singing Runner) April 3, 2011, 2:08 pm

    You have such a positive attitude Caitlin! I love it and I’m so proud of you! :D

    Reply
  • Kristina April 3, 2011, 2:10 pm

    Glad to hear you had a great race while walking! And thank you so much for that quote from Elaine…the past few months have been difficult and I needed to read that. So thank you!! :)

    Reply
  • Amanda- The Nutritionist Reviews April 3, 2011, 2:10 pm

    Looks like a great time walking! Beautiful pictures!

    Reply
  • Joyce @ Flowing to Fifty April 3, 2011, 2:11 pm

    Well done!!! Whether we walk, run or wheel, our bodies are wonderful creations. Good job listening and respecting what your body was telling you. Looks like you had a blast.

    Reply
  • gabriella @ embracement April 3, 2011, 2:11 pm

    Love reading your walking recap. I passed orange tanks at some point and assumed it was you but was in too much of a groove to stop. I LOVED my first race, definitely have the race bug! I’m glad you didn’t like the injury sideline you completely because it was a gorgeous day and nothing gets better than the park (in my New Yorker opinion).

    Reply
  • Stacie @ Imperfectly Healthy April 3, 2011, 2:11 pm

    Reading your post makes me want to sign up to walk a half! I’m not big on running as I feel it’s just too hard on the joints/body, but I’d love to walk one!

    Reply
  • Emilie April 3, 2011, 2:16 pm

    Yay! I’m so glad you had a great time in Central Park! I run there everyday and I think it’s probably the thing I would miss most if I ever moved out of NYC. Walking around it is a great way to experience it, and you had a lovely day for it :)

    And you’re right, NYRR has got it going on–their races are always super well-organized and incredibly smooth.

    Reply
  • Alexa @ The Girl In Chucks April 3, 2011, 2:16 pm

    So awesome!

    One of the reasons I’ve been hesitant to sign up for longer distance races is because I’m not sure I have it in me to run 13.1 miles. Maybe 6 or 7….but 13 is a lot. You and a couple other people I know walked a half today. It just made me reason that I don’t need to run the whole thing. I just need to do what is right for me. I think I’m gonna sign up! :D

    Reply
  • Caitlyn (The Spoonful of Life) April 3, 2011, 2:22 pm

    Awesome! I bet that was a nice change from running.

    I’ve never been to a race where they sell ice cream or pretzels on the course! That is so cool!

    Reply
  • Dori April 3, 2011, 2:23 pm

    Congrats! So happy you ended up having an awesome race!

    Reply
  • Amy April 3, 2011, 2:23 pm

    NYC is the bombbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbb! I ran my first NYC marathon in November– after training for it in 2008 and blowing out my knee playing on a trampoline with my four and six year old nieces whose dad had died 3 weeks before. I have a “race story” which you might enjoy– if so, let me know where to send it! I’m glad you had such an awesome day and if you run another full– MAKE IT NYC! If you read my story, you will totally know why :) It needs to be on your bucket list, sista!

    Reply
  • alison April 3, 2011, 2:23 pm

    Congrats, Caitlin! If you’re going to walk a race, walking in NYC is the place to do it. I’m glad you had fun!

    Reply
  • Freya April 3, 2011, 2:24 pm

    Stopping for food on the way, all the mid-race pictures, being able to talk without choking…I want to walk a half mary now :P
    Well done!

    Reply
  • Baking 'n' Books April 3, 2011, 2:26 pm

    What a beautiful day there! Congrats. Is that an egg in your salad? I love the look of a nice hard-boiled egg…I think it’s the smoothness ;)

    Reply
  • Lindsay April 3, 2011, 2:28 pm

    I’m glad you had a good time! I’m so jealous that you’re able to race at all. I started working every weekend on the weekend I was supposed to run my first half back in November. Without weekends racing is pretty much out of the picture for me now. Oh well! :]

    Reply
  • Elizabeth April 3, 2011, 2:29 pm

    Congratulations! Look likes you had fun!

    I saw this link on a friend’s facebook and thought you might be interested. It’s an article about research on fat talk and the effect it has on women.
    http://healthland.time.com/2011/03/31/girl-you-are-so-not-fat-does-fat-talk-make-anyone-feel-better/

    Reply
    • Caitlin April 4, 2011, 9:53 pm

      Thanks for passing this along!

      Reply
  • Marisa @ Loser for Life April 3, 2011, 2:29 pm

    Way to represent for the walkers, Caitlin! Whether you run or walk, the accomplishment is still there! Congrats and so glad you had a wonderful, pain-free race!

    Reply
  • Nicole April 3, 2011, 2:34 pm

    I think walking 13.1 miles as runner is move of an accomplishment than setting a new PR, I couldn’t have done it, I would have been antsy the entire time! Congrats to you all the way!!

    Reply
  • Cate April 3, 2011, 2:36 pm

    Way to go Caitlin! It sounds like you such a great time and isn’t that really all that matter? :)

    And I love Elaine’s quote – it makes you want to go out there and do something!

    Reply
  • Natalia - a side of simple April 3, 2011, 2:36 pm

    Wooo! Congratulations! Honestly, I’m really sorry that you were injured for this race but I’m so happy and so proud that you represented walkers. What a great experience! Walking gets a bad rep but it is an intense, killer workout!!

    Reply
  • Julie @ Lettuce Choose Healthy April 3, 2011, 2:37 pm

    what a fun race! run or walk .. you still finished congrats!

    Reply
  • Fit Chick Britt April 3, 2011, 2:43 pm

    Congrats on the race! It sounds like you had so much fun doing a low-key run and gettin to absorb the scenery. I don’t know if I could ever walk a half. You’re awesome!!

    Reply
  • Sarah @ The Strength of Faith April 3, 2011, 2:44 pm

    I’m so happy for you! A great example to people that you don’t need to run to experience racing.

    Reply
  • Kacy April 3, 2011, 2:54 pm

    That’s awesome! I think it would definitely be really fun to walk a half someday.

    Reply
  • Heather @ Health, Happiness, and Hope April 3, 2011, 2:59 pm

    Thanks for the awesome recap! It really does sound like fun… I absolutely LOVE walking, and completely agree that it does amazing things for stress levels. It is still such an accomplishment to have walked 13.1 miles! :)

    Reply
  • Sarah for Real April 3, 2011, 3:00 pm

    Yay! I am reconsidering bailing on my upcoming 12k and might do the walking thing if my knee allows. So glad you had such a good time! At a 16:00 pace, would you say you were speed walking or just regular?

    Reply
  • Clare @ Fitting It All In April 3, 2011, 3:01 pm

    Caitlin,
    Thank you SO SO much for sharing your walking experience. I think this post will help tons of people, including me, not feel as guilty or bad if we need to drop out of running a race. I’m definitely more willing to walk now if my body tells me so!
    Congratulations!
    Clare

    Reply
  • Caroline April 3, 2011, 3:08 pm

    Hey! I love reading your blog. I too get super nervous before races! I have only walked one half and I found that I got terrible blisters that I don’t get from running. Having said that, I have never run anything longer than about 8k! I am a wannabe runner (no make that a will be runner). Anyway, well done! Caroline xxx

    Reply
    • Caitlin April 4, 2011, 9:53 pm

      Thanks for reading :)

      Reply
  • Kelly April 3, 2011, 3:12 pm

    I am so proud of you for making lemonade out of lemons!! :)

    Reply
  • Little Bookworm April 3, 2011, 3:19 pm

    Congratulations! :)

    Reply
  • Marci April 3, 2011, 3:23 pm

    I think it’s pretty great that you are inspiring people to walk. Just watching Twitter and hearing people write that they enjoy walking so much over running or in addition is all your doing. There is nothing wrong with walking a race, the mileage is mileage! It’s an accomplishment to finish, no matter how you get there.
    Does the word “injured” not bother you? I have been doing PT for months and can’t run long distances right now because of ITBS at the knee, but I just don’t consider myself injured. I can walk, do do lunges, squats, jumps, and anything else but run and I am happy I’m not sidelined from those. There is definitely something wrong with my IT Band, but I just don’t consider it “injured.” I guess it seems overly dramatic?
    Have a great rest of the trip!

    Reply
    • Caitlin April 4, 2011, 9:52 pm

      Injured doesn’t bother me really – it’s just a fact about my physical body, not about me personally! You know what I mean?

      Reply
  • Sarena (The Non-Dairy Queen) April 3, 2011, 3:24 pm

    Congratulations Caitlin! I am so happy (and proud) for you. What a great way to keep positive and follow through. Sounds like a great day!

    Reply
  • Emma (Namaste Everyday) April 3, 2011, 3:29 pm

    I am SO proud of you and inspired by you! Yesterday, I walked 10 miles and I kept thinking about you walking the 13!

    Reply
  • Lindsey April 3, 2011, 3:30 pm

    Awesome job! I’m thinking about walking a half next weekend because I’m injured. It’s a small race though, in a small town so I’m worried I’m going to be really bored! I’m glad to hear you had a good time!

    Reply
    • Christine April 3, 2011, 4:02 pm

      If you’re doing it alone, download some podcasts or a book on tape.

      Reply
      • Lindsey April 3, 2011, 5:31 pm

        Good idea, thanks. I wish I could have a friend do it with me but the race is full :(

        Reply
  • JenRD April 3, 2011, 3:31 pm

    Congrats! You had beautiful weather for a race! Isn’t that Whole Foods humongous? I used to work 2 blocks from there–it was very tempting!

    Reply
  • Tammy April 3, 2011, 3:34 pm

    Congrats Caitlin! Job well done. :)

    Reply
  • JJ April 3, 2011, 3:37 pm

    Did you catch where Elaine is from? I’m pretty sure she is from South Dakota and taught in my master’s program. If I remember correctly, she got married at the halfway point of the Disney marathon about 12 or so years ago! It’s a small, small world!

    Reply
    • Caitlin April 4, 2011, 9:52 pm

      Yes, that’s her – how awesome! I’m going to interview her for the blog soon.

      Reply
  • Brittany April 3, 2011, 3:40 pm

    Great race, Caitlin! I’m so proud of you! Walking can be just as motivating as running :) Thanks for giving us walkers a shout out!!!

    Reply
  • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas April 3, 2011, 3:49 pm

    Nice job Caitlin! It looks like you made walking the race a really fun time!

    Reply
  • Kristina @ spabettie April 3, 2011, 3:54 pm

    LOVE this recap! :) every race should have a pretzel stop…

    Reply
  • Clarissa April 3, 2011, 3:57 pm

    Congratulations!! I love that you can walk this – I think I’ll definitely start training for some walk-a-thons!

    Reply
  • Robin April 3, 2011, 3:59 pm

    Congratulations! Your attitude is great. You’re right – if we want to run for years, we need to respect our bodies. If we are injured, it’s OK to step back for a while. Thanks for sharing the experience with us!

    Reply
  • Alayna @ Thyme Bombe April 3, 2011, 3:59 pm

    I found this so inspiring! I definitely don’t feel like you are any less of an athlete for walking, in fact, you’ve showed me just how hard this distance is and that it’s a real accomplishment to achieve no matter how fast you do it. And even better, we got to see so many more pictures with more time on your hands! I think this is great inspiration for people that may never run a half, that you can still be active and give everything you have!

    Reply
  • Jen April 3, 2011, 3:59 pm

    That woman is 70?! Holy moses…running marathons obviously takes years off your looks; I would’ve guessed she was in her late 50s! Congrats on finishing the marathon. Cool to read your perspective on walking it vs running…sounds like you had a great time!

    Reply
  • Emily @ Perfection Isn't Happy April 3, 2011, 4:38 pm

    Congrats! I prefer walking, so I’m glad some bloggers were proud to represent ;)! I walked a 12 miler with my mom when I was 7 (yes, 7!), but the most I’ve done since then is a 10K(and I ran that one). I guess I’ve never thought about signing up for a longer race for the purpose of walking, but now I’m not afraid to do it!

    Reply
  • Jen April 3, 2011, 4:42 pm

    Congratulations girl! I’ve always liked Nike’s “Just Do It” motto, so I really love what that woman Elaine said. People like that are so inspiring.

    And even after reading this whole post, half my mind is still focused on the thought of a deliciously chewy New York bagel. If only I didn’t live in Los Angeles. Soooo farrrr awayyyy!

    Reply
  • Lauren @ChiGalLauren April 3, 2011, 4:55 pm

    Looks like you guys had a great time, running or not! I think its awesome that blogging brought you all together to do something so cool!

    Reply
  • Heather April 3, 2011, 5:09 pm

    how awesome to stop during a race fo a pretzel! I think that is my favorite part! congrats on finishing!

    Reply
  • Annie@stronghealthyfit April 3, 2011, 5:18 pm

    Love your attitude. Great race recap! NYC is amazing.

    Reply
  • Parita @ myinnershakti April 3, 2011, 5:20 pm

    Great job, Caitlin! Glad you had fun with this half!! :) And Elaine is hard core! 110 marathons?!?! Whoa!

    Reply
  • Laurie April 3, 2011, 5:23 pm

    I’ve been training for the Avon Walk which is 26 miles on a Sat. and 13 the next day. It was totally weird to be walking at first. Now, I am loving it, but agree w/ you on so many things: sausage fingers, different muscles, needing to run some during it.
    We did 15 miles today, but one of our team members was in NY, so she went to do her training walk there….and sent us pix of your race. I said “I know someone doing that!” How coincidental! Glad you had fun!

    Reply
    • Caitlin April 4, 2011, 9:51 pm

      Good luck with your walk!!!

      Reply
  • Leah April 3, 2011, 5:30 pm

    Great job! Glad you were able to have a great walk….

    Reply
  • Michele @ Healthy Cultivations April 3, 2011, 5:40 pm

    So glad you had a wonderful time! Also good to know it’s not just me that gets so sore on the sides of my legs during longer walks. You might have new perspective on the old debate about whether a person is a marathoner (or half marathoner) if they walk instead of run — I’m not saying you’re against it… just that you have a new experience to inform opinions. I really do believe it’s about completing the distance. I get that elite runners want to keep races small and fast, but it’s WONDERFUL that long enough time limits are making marathons accessible to people at every speed.

    Reply
  • Christina April 3, 2011, 5:50 pm

    Congrats! I’m glad you had fun anyways.

    Reply
  • Jessica @ The Process of Healing April 3, 2011, 6:01 pm

    Congratulations!!! Nothing better than a long walk with good friends :)

    Reply
  • Jamie AKA "Sometimes Healthy Girl" April 3, 2011, 6:14 pm

    Congrats on finishing! I imagine walking gives you a whole new perspective on half marathons. And if you’re going to walk one, Central Park is the BEST place. I run there almost every day and never get tired of all of the exciting sights. Congrats again. Hope you enjoy the rest of your time here!

    Reply
  • Laughter-Loving Stacy April 3, 2011, 6:14 pm

    Oh awesome! i’m glad u had a blast!!! yay!!

    Reply
  • Gabriela @ Une Vie Saine April 3, 2011, 6:25 pm

    Yayyy I had so much fun walking with you today!! It might not have been the ideal situation, but I think we still did pretty damn well :) Hope the knee feels okay- walkers fo lyfe.

    Reply
  • Kristen April 3, 2011, 6:39 pm

    first of all CONGRATS! Whether you place fisst of 7,000th, you still completed FOUR half marathons!

    (also 110 marathons. Something we can all look forward to, right? and she also had great advice!)

    Reply
  • Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat April 3, 2011, 6:47 pm

    Great job Caitlin! Congrats on another first experience. I think heading to Whole Foods post-race sounds like a great way to celebrate!

    Reply
  • Emily April 3, 2011, 6:53 pm

    UGH totally craving a pretzel! Hahahah my friend Brynne & I saw you and your crew near the port-o-potties this morning! Congrats on the race, it was an absolutely beautiful day to be out and about in NYC!

    Reply
    • Caitlin April 4, 2011, 9:50 pm

      I wish you had said hello! :) I hope you had a good race.

      Reply
  • Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin April 3, 2011, 6:55 pm

    It looks like you had such a fun time! Congrats! I love what you said about the medal feeling the same whether you ran or walked. It’s so true that walking it is just as big of an accomplishment and I’m glad you feel proud about it. :)

    Reply
  • Shannon May April 3, 2011, 6:56 pm

    love reading your nyc recaps!

    Great job today :)

    Reply
  • Mary @ Bites and Bliss April 3, 2011, 7:04 pm

    I can definitely see why walking would be more difficult than running in some aspects. I’d be so tempted to just run, especially with so many runners around!! It’s good you stuck it out, though and enjoyed it rather than pushing your luck with your healing injury. Great job!! :D

    Reply
  • Jess@atasteofconfidence April 3, 2011, 7:07 pm

    Glad you had a good time running despite everything:)

    Reply
  • Miranda @ Working Mom Works Out April 3, 2011, 7:28 pm

    Haha! I love the stopping and having the pretzel. It sounds like you had a really good time, even if not they way you wanted. Congrats, Superstar!

    Reply
  • Jamie@Healthywalk April 3, 2011, 7:29 pm

    Congratulations, Caitlin! It’s so nice to see you have such a great outlook on everything and I’m glad that it went well!

    Reply
  • Angela (Oh She Glows) April 3, 2011, 7:36 pm

    Congrats on your 4th half! What a gorgeous way to see the city and it looks like you had a blast even if it wasn’t the way you originally planned.

    Oh and Elaine looks amazing..much younger than 70!!! What an inspiring lady.

    Reply
  • Anna April 3, 2011, 7:45 pm

    AHH I got really excited when I saw that picture of the WF hot bar because of what’s on top- the boxes of leafy kale chips. I work part time for that company, Brad’s Raw Foods, doing in-store demos in Whole Foods around DC!

    Reply
    • Caitlin April 4, 2011, 9:49 pm

      I almost bought those!

      Reply
  • Kate (What Kate is Cooking) April 3, 2011, 7:45 pm

    That looks so fun! I think the best way to explore a city is by walking, so that’s a great way to absorb your surroundings.

    My fingers turn into sausages when I walk too! So do my feet- it’s horrifying how much they swell, haha!

    Reply
  • Lisa (I'm an Okie) April 3, 2011, 7:55 pm

    I think this was the best possible half marathon that you could’ve walked. You had so much to see in New York CIty. Loved your recap and you make me want to walk one!

    Reply
  • Lauren April 3, 2011, 7:58 pm

    The important thing is, you NEVER gave up! So proud of you. ;)

    Reply
  • Kris April 3, 2011, 8:05 pm

    Glad you had a great time! Yay for you!!

    Reply
  • Tina @ Faith Fitness Fun April 3, 2011, 8:23 pm

    Agreed! I think its more inspiring that you listened to your body. And you had fun to boot. :)

    Reply
  • Annie April 3, 2011, 8:27 pm

    Haha so I totally have a B.S. and M.S. in exercise physiology (and am working on a PhD) and have never really been able to figure out why my hands swelled when I walked versus ran. Duh…gravity! Its funny how even as much as you know about a topic something so small can confuse you! Congrats on the race and good call as to why I have swollen fingers :)

    Reply
    • Caitlin April 4, 2011, 9:49 pm

      Hahah now you know!!!

      Reply
  • Ali @ Ali Runs April 3, 2011, 8:30 pm

    Awesome job on the half!! I think it is awesome that you didn’t let the disappointment of an injury sideline you from having an awesome race experience! Thanks for blogging about it! :)

    Reply
  • Allison @ Happy Tales April 3, 2011, 8:34 pm

    CONGRATS, Caitlin!!! That’s so awesome that you walked nearly the whole thing… what a whole new world of a sport!! The last half I did was a part of an 18mile run, and i most definitely took the time to do some downward dogs (as well as the butterfly stretch!) because I was not worried about time at all… just wanted to finish without injury, and I am sooo proud that I accomplished that. Just as I am sure you are proud that you are on track with recovering!! I, too, want to run for many many MANY more years to come!

    Reply
  • Georgie April 3, 2011, 8:44 pm

    Congratulations on your race! Walking or running, it’s an accomplishment to be proud of! Loved all the pics, and we wouldn’t have gotten to enjoy them if you were running. (Wait, you don’t run with the camera too, do you?)

    Anyway, rest up, gloat a bit, and soon you’ll be running again!

    Thanks for sharing !

    Georgie

    Reply
  • Christy April 3, 2011, 9:08 pm

    Looks like a great time!

    Reply
  • Moll April 3, 2011, 9:18 pm

    That’s awesome that you still participated! I backed out completely last summer’s half after injuring myself.

    Reply
  • chelsey @ clean eating chelsey April 3, 2011, 9:41 pm

    I for real loooove Elaine!!! That is so awesome she is still running!

    Reply
  • Mandiee April 3, 2011, 10:26 pm

    Great job and congradulations! I think it is so inspiring that you decided to turn a possibly negative situation into a positive one. In fact, I would love to walk a half-marathon, but could not imagine running one. Do you think it would be weird if I signed up for one for that purpose? Would I be offending any of the runners? I believe that there is a lot of strength in running a (half) marathon, but walking deserves credit, too. I love hiking, but running is another story. I have HUGE admiration for runners, though. Anyway, I would love to hear what you think about signing up to walk a half/what other runners thought of you walking it.

    Have a lovely day!

    Reply
    • Caitlin April 4, 2011, 9:48 pm

      Hi Mandiee!

      There are lots of races that are especially geared towards walkers – I’m thinking the Disney races and most women’s specific races. If you do one of those, you will be surrounded by other like-minded walkers! Some halves are known to be faster in general.

      Reply
  • Ash @ Good Taste Healthy Me April 3, 2011, 10:28 pm

    Looks like you still had a great time. Congrats!

    Reply
  • Sonali April 3, 2011, 10:36 pm

    congratulations caitlin!! it sounds like you had a wonderful trip to NYC!!

    Reply
  • Jacalyn April 3, 2011, 10:41 pm

    way to go… whoot whoot! my son threw you a shot out from my work email: jnjohnson@mdanderson.org.

    Reply
  • Shannon April 3, 2011, 10:43 pm

    LOVE, LOVE your attitude! “Whether you run or walk, the medal around your neck feels the same.” – beautiful! Your approach to recovery and respecting limits particularly inspirational to me right now, because I had registered for my first ever marathon (this coming November), but I just hurt my back pretty bad last week. Thanks as always Caitlin!

    Reply
  • Sarah @ The Pajama Chef April 3, 2011, 10:48 pm

    congrats on your race! way to go–looks fun :)

    Reply
  • Alison April 3, 2011, 11:21 pm

    Congrats! So glad you were able to compete — I loved that you stopped for a pretzel :)

    Also, Elaine is my new hero! I love a smart, sassy 70-year old, and she gives some great advice.

    Reply
  • Andreea @ Journey To USA April 4, 2011, 12:31 am

    No need to tell you what a great job you have done, BUT I HAVE TOO! I’m more of a walker and me and my hub are always plan our long walk.

    Our PR is 28 miles in about 6 hours and we ended up returning back with a car that pick us up on the way.

    Reply
  • eatingRD April 4, 2011, 12:45 am

    Glad you had a great race! No matter what the speed. I’m not much of a runner myself and it’s great you were able to enjoy the scenery a bit more :)

    Reply
  • Dean April 4, 2011, 12:45 am

    Great blog! So glad to hear you had a good experience. I am soooo ready to run another half (only got to do 1 in 2010 before knee problems set in), but I know I shouldn’t push it. First appt with a PT tomorrow. So fingers crossed, I’ll get a diagnosis and be getting back into long distances soon.

    Reply
    • Caitlin April 4, 2011, 9:46 pm

      Good luck!!!

      Reply
  • Amanda April 4, 2011, 1:55 am

    Congrats! You were so bummed about not running the half, I’m so glad that you had a blast!

    Reply
  • Emily April 4, 2011, 2:54 am

    Nice Caitlin! Good job on listening to your body and not pushing it beyond its limits.

    Reply
  • cathyk April 4, 2011, 6:11 am

    thanks for the photos and report, caitlin!
    i am so proud of you and gabriela for LISTENING to your bodies. you’re so wise and mature for your ages. if i had done the same at your ages (i’m 41 now), i’d have suffered through a lot less mental anguish and physical distress, over the years, with running injuries. i’m still learning! and thanks to your positive example, i’m inspired to KEEP listening! thanks so much.

    Reply
    • Caitlin April 4, 2011, 9:46 pm

      :) thank you for this sweet remark.

      Reply
  • Khushboo April 4, 2011, 6:25 am

    Awesome job! After reading this post, I’m tempted to walk a half marathon next time im in NY- take it in for what it truly is :)

    Reply
  • Stephanie April 4, 2011, 7:59 am

    That’s awesome! Congratulations! You should get a t-shirt printed that says 7,396th fastest woman in town.

    Reply
  • Kelly (meatlesswithaman.blogspot.com) April 4, 2011, 10:30 am

    This is awesome! Congrats to you. Also – if it takes running 110 marathons to look THAT GOOD at 70, I better sign up NOW!

    Reply
  • Andrea (canyoustayfordinner.com) April 4, 2011, 10:34 am

    Beautiful. You rock.

    Reply
  • DC Runographer April 4, 2011, 10:43 am

    I love racing around Central Park when I get to NYC. Congrats on accomplishing something new to racing.

    Reply
  • beth April 4, 2011, 10:55 am

    you just inspired me…thank you.

    Reply
    • Caitlin April 4, 2011, 9:45 pm

      thank you!

      Reply
  • Amber K April 4, 2011, 11:55 am

    Congratulations on your great race! I’m glad it was fun in a whole new way :)

    Reply
  • melissa (fitnessnyc) April 4, 2011, 1:34 pm

    Great job! glad you enjoyed nyc. I think I take road runners organization for granted, i don’t even notice it!

    Reply
  • Jo @ Jo In the Kitchen April 4, 2011, 2:38 pm

    Great job Caitlin!!

    Reply
  • JenATX April 4, 2011, 9:40 pm

    thanks for having a great perspective :) its easy to tell others to be positive when challenges arise, but its hard to actually be positive & find the great things that present themselves in the situations our lives bring us! so, thanks for putting a good face forward and having a great time out there

    Reply
  • Lauren @ Team Giles April 4, 2011, 11:35 pm

    I’m so proud of you for sticking with it! Walking that distance is tough. I personally think you mentally think about each step more. Where when you’re running, I know that for me, I can get lost in focusing on breathing and just GO!

    You did great Caitlin!

    Reply
  • Katherine: Unemployed April 5, 2011, 7:04 am

    walking 13 miles is amazing! I have run that far in the past but I do not honestly think I have the stamina to walk that far. great job and great enthusiasm! I love your optimism and outlook on a less-than-optimal situation

    Reply
  • Little Miss Runshine April 5, 2011, 7:22 pm

    Looks like you had so much fun! I love all the pictures!

    Reply
  • Dominique April 5, 2011, 9:18 pm

    That’s nice. You had so much fun and kept going despite the injury. I suppose you’re an inspiring figure. Keep it up. GO GO GO! Fighting~

    Reply
  • Sarah-Mae @ Eat, Run, Knit April 8, 2011, 1:16 pm

    Reading this late and commenting even later, but this post was so inspiring to me! I fractured my hip back in October after having qualified for the Boston Marathon, so in 10 days I will be jogging/walking the BM! I’m nervous, excited, and totally confusing my body with the idea of not pushing myself. This post was so inspiring, I can’t wait to walk my marathon ^_^

    Reply
  • Shayla April 8, 2011, 3:13 pm

    Congrats Caitlin!! I’m a little behind reading but just wanted to say congrats and such an inspiring story…so proud of you for listening to your body and walking a half marathon!! That’s awesome and I think 1.5 hours off of your running marathon time is pretty damn good! :)

    By the way, what type of Lululemon capri pants are you wearing? Super cute!

    Reply
    • Caitlin April 9, 2011, 9:58 am

      The sprints!

      Reply
      • Shayla April 9, 2011, 10:12 am

        Awesome! Thank you :)

        Reply
  • Karen April 18, 2012, 2:52 pm

    I was looking around for inspiration because I am in the same boat. I will not be able to run my next half due to an injury. Have decided to walk it instead. I was feeling very down about it but after reading about your experience I am psyched up!!! THANK YOU!! I esp. love what you said at the end – the medal will feel the same!

    Reply
    • Katie April 14, 2013, 10:17 pm

      Karen, I am also currently injured and have been a reader of Caitlin’s blog for a few years.. I’m so glad she had this post and that others are finding it. I have a half marathon in two weeks that I plan on walking. My ultimate goal is a marathon on June 22, hopefully I’ll be able to run that, but we’ll see. Good luck to you!!

      Reply