Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Love Run Philadelphia and Nike Women's Half Marathon DC

When I entered the random drawing I never thought in a million years that I would be selected.  I think I read that one in every five people was selected.  I'm not that lucky.  After a long month of waiting, the email came one night after a long, exhausting day of work.  I opened my email on my phone and the first thing that popped up was from "Nike Women's Half Ma..." and below said "Your entry to the 2014 Nike Women's..."  That was such a tease and I was actually nervous to open it.  I opened the email and I had been ACCEPTED!  This half fell four weeks after the Love Run so good thing I already had a training plan in place.

I started crossfit in December and I started training in the new year.  I could definitely tell a difference in my running after lifting weights, I felt stronger.  We had one of the worst winters in New Jersey.  My training was no where near where it should have been, just mostly long (cold) runs on the weekend.  My best friend had decided that the Love Run was going to be her first half and I was so excited to have a training partner.  We live around the corner from each other so it's really convenient.  We did a couple long runs together but some alone.  I started having some pain in my right foot while preparing for this run.  Some runs I had to call my boyfriend to pick me up four miles away from my house.  It would come and go but all in all I felt prepared.

The Love Run approached and the weather forecast wasn't looking too good.  Rain.  Of course, something I have never experienced while running distances.  I had hopes that it would change, but it didn't.  I ran 13.1 miles in the rain.  We wore trash bags to the start.  For the first couple of miles in was a light rain/mist.  So we decided to shed the trash bags around mile 4 -  big mistake.  Around mile 6 is was real, cold rain.  I was soaked to the bone.  My fingers seemed useless, it was so difficult to open my GUs.  I don't know if it was the company, the weather, or crossfit, but I felt so incredible during this race.  I had to slow down in the last couple miles for my friend, but I still finished with a PR!

Two half marathons four weeks apart was not ideal for me, but alas I was doing it.  The pain in my foot continued.  I went to my local running store and had them fit me for insoles and pick up new shoes.  The insoles helped for a little, but I didn't run more than 6 miles in between the two races.  I didn't feel as confident going down to DC.

We drove to DC Saturday morning.  I hadn't felt good since breakfast at Bob Evans.  It was an hour and a half drive.  We were too early to check in so we valeted the car and took the subway/walked to the packet pick up.  I still wasn't feel right and my boyfriend could tell.  Once we got to check in we decided to relax a bit before heading out into the city.  That's when I new I was in trouble.  Here came the stomach bug - a minor one compared to what I had previously that year.  We still did a couple tourist-y things before hitting the hay.  It was a early wake up, I felt better but not 100%.  I decided that I just wanted to finish.  I felt fantastic through the first four miles!  I even spotted my boyfriend in the sea of people and got a kiss around mile 3.  Around mile 6 I saw a pacer that would give me a PR.  I stayed with her for a bit, but then lost her.  The spectators were fantastic!  The second half of the race was a disaster.  The pain in my foot came back.  I slowed and just wanted it to be over.  I finally saw the finish and couldn't have been happier.  I got my necklace and found my boyfriend and friends.  I wasn't a happy camper.

Rain for the first race and not feeling well on the second - a great way to start 2014 races.  I think this deterred me from running for a while.  I'm literally now getting back into running (besides anything at crossfit which was usually a half mile or mile).  I love running.  I love the feeling I get when I finish a race or even just a short run around the neighborhood.  I hope that I can put my races in the past and start anew.

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