I am still in shock.
Did I really run 13.1 miles?
Yes, yes I did.
SIX weeks ago I decided to just go for it. Yes, that left me with only six weeks to train. Prior to these six weeks I wasn't really on a running schedule, I just ran whenever I felt like it. So maybe 2-3 times a week. Let it be known that I have only ever done 5k's. No, of course I did not work myself up from 5k's to 10k's. I'm crazy, people. This I DO wish I would have done, but oh well. I had a lot of good runs and a lot of bad runs during my training. But, I was determined. I forced myself to run when I didn't want to because I needed to. I was not going to back out of this. Even when it came down to one week left and I had a very bad run, I would not let myself quit. To me, this is the hardest part...getting (forcing) yourself out the door to train. This is also the most important part.
I have never considered myself 'a runner'. I run 10-11 minute miles. A lot of people I know or am surrounded by are much faster than I, much more dedicated than I. It wasn't til I signed up for this half marathon that my view of myself being a runner changed. Thanks to my Pinterest running inspiration board and reading articles on Runners World:
Race Day: I am a nervous wreck. My hands are shaking. I force food down and head out the door. All by myself. I get down there, it's packed. Nerves hike up even more. Then I realize I am hungry and I have to use the restroom so bad. Wait in a long line to use the restroom and realize I left my ipod in my car. I pee, then run back to my car to get my ipod and curse at myself for forgetting that granola bar on my dresser. Then we are all called to the start line. I make my way through the crowd to around the 10+ mile marker. I think to myself... "OMG THIS IS IT!!!" I do some last minute stretching, say some prayers, calm myself down, remind myself of why I am doing this, who I am doing it for, and to just have fun.
It was an absolutely beautiful day. Wasn't too cold, wasn't too hot. So thankful for this. We went through some beautiful neighborhoods in Downtown Orlando. I was keeping a 10 minute mile pace for a while. I went back and forth from running to power walking. I carried a water bottle with me. Very thankful for this. At every station I just grabbed some Gatorade, drank half of it and then drank some water.
Mile 6 I saw my parents. I so very much needed to see them and hear their encouragements.
Miles 10-12 were by far the hardest miles. A girl next to me looks at me and goes... "THIS SUCKS". It really did. By now my body is aching and I am STARVING. So much to the point where I am tempted multiple times to ask my fellow runners if I can have some of their Gu packs or if they have food. I keep trying to ignore it but I was almost to the point of crying. Especially around Mile 12 when people who have completed the race are walking back to their cars, medals around their necks and bananas in their hands. What I would have given for a dang banana. I held it together. I did a lot of power walking. My goal was to finish between 2-2 1/2 hours. I was over the 2 hour mark. I then realized I would not make it before 2 1/2 hrs and I honestly was okay with that. I was going to finish and that is all that mattered at this point. I needed food and I needed beer.
Then, I saw the finish line. I crossed that corner and sucked up all that was left in me to run the entire way to the finish line. I saw my Dad again. I needed that push. I hear my mother screaming my name. I hear my name on the loud speaker announcing my arrival.
I crossed the finish line at 2:32:38.
|Place||Name||Bib||Age||Div Place||Gender Place||Clock Time||Chip Time||Pace||Hometown|
|1829||MICHELLE YUTZY||848||26||132||852||2:33:47||2:32:38||11:39.1||WINTER SPRINGS, FL|
Was immediately given my medal. Found my Mom. Almost vomited. And then I couldn't hold back the tears. I also wanted to scream from pain and shock. I just completed a half marathon... 13.1 miles!!!!!!!
My parents and I went to Cracker Barrel after. I quickly could feel my body starting to ache and the salt covering my face (ew). Let me tell you...I looked SEXY. I drank lots of water and some Chocolate Milk. I tried to eat my food but then I quickly began to feel like I was going to vomit again. I assume it was from not having anything in my stomach for so long.
The rest of my day was spent hydrating, stretching, massaging my muscles, sticking my legs in the ice cold pool, and icing my body.
I also treated myself to a pedicure/manicure. Poor souls, I know. The person doing my feet asked me if I was a runner.
I smiled and said yes, "I AM A RUNNER."
Looking back now, I really should have started training 10wks prior to race day and more strength training. I am going to start strength training this week. There is a 10k and another half marathon next year that I just might find myself doing. This time, I know what to expect and how to better prepare myself. I also will hope to NOT do this race by myself. I need to make sure I eat plenty before and take GU or G2 packets with me, for just in case. Next, I need to get fitted for running shoes. My foot hurts really bad today and I believe it is because of not having the right shoe. Ouch!
THANK YOU to all who encouraged and believed in me!!!