Race: Little Rock Half Marathon
Personal Tidbit: Runs her own personal training business; tweets from Knack4Nutrition
In Her Own Words:
The night before the race, I prepped for my run by doing the two things I know how to do best: eat and organize. I laid out all of my gear, ensuring that I didn’t forget anything important. After that was done, I made my ‘carbo-load’ meal of pasta with crab. Even with a heavy dinner and a very powerful sleeping pill willing me to sleep, I tossed and turned in anticipation. When the alarm went off at 5:15 AM, I shot out of my bed. I made like Skinny Runner and put on a full face of make-up while chugging enough coffee to fuel a small army.
The course was flat with the exception of one major hill in the middle. It was the only time throughout the race that I ran above a 10:10 min/mile. I pretty much zoned out from the start and had a goal of running a 9:55 pace overall. I followed Bart Yasso’s advice and stopped at every single water station to walk, even if only for a few seconds. I think this made a huge difference in my overall stamina.
I dug really deep in the last two miles. I knew the end was near and that I was on track to hit my goal. My last full mile ended up being a 9:21! Unbelievable! As I rounded the last corner to the finish line, I spotted my cheering section. It was so great to see my family standing there, cheering me on. Seeing them gave me the last push to finish the final 0.26 miles at an 8:18 pace (the course was a bit long according to my Garmin).
I finished with an overwhelming sense of pride. Training for this race was grueling, and at times ugly, but every mile and drop of sweat was worthwhile. I felt 100 times stronger today than I did during my first half-marathon in October. It was as if I was a different runner. With 11 minutes shaved off my personal record, this day was nothing if not a rousing success! I think it’s time to start contemplating a serious leap of faith… 26.2 anyone!?
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Do you walk through water stations like Jennifer did? And are you brave enough to drink coffee before a race? I usually walk through water stations, and I’ll brave the java!