Monday, February 18, 2013

Pocatello Half Marathon

Last fall I ran my first half marathon!  The race was the "Running the Gap" Pocatello half marathon and it was on September 1.  My awesome, marathoner dad ran it with me.  And do you know what?  I finished it!  I trained pretty diligently all summer and I think my longest training run was 9 or 10 miles, so I felt confident I could cover the distance.  Loren, Sophie and I drove east to Pocatello on Friday night and met up with my parents, grandparents, uncle, aunt and cousin for dinner.  Both my parents grew up there, hence all the family members.  My dad and I got our packets, got settled into our hotel rooms and I felt good to go.

Race day dawned with nice weather.  We made it on the bus to the starting line - not the first bus, but the last possible one, per my dad's advice.  That way you don't have to stand around at the cold starting line for longer than necessary.  There was also a full marathon going on, so the half marathon was just on the last 13.1 miles of the marathon course.  We watched the marathon runners go by, then we half-ers were off!

I felt good the first mile.  Like, really, really good.  Then I looked at my watch at the mile marker and it said 7 something and I panicked!  That was way faster than I needed to, or should have been going.  My official goal was simply to finish, since it was my first race at this distance, but my unofficial goal was to finish under 2 hours.  That works out to just over 9 minutes per mile, so it was good that I had some cushion on the time, but it ended up being too much.  I felt like after mile 5 or so I really started to fade and then it was a long, hard haul to the finish.

#1 - coming up on our family cheering section

#2 - sweet encouragement from Sophie

#3 - I love this one.  See you at the finish line!

Thankfully I had my dad and he stuck with me the whole race, even though he could have run much faster.  I'm so grateful we did it together.  I ended up learning that I was not very mentally tough, or at least not very mentally prepared for such a long distance, but he helped me keep going, mile after mile.  I felt like I walked a lot and I know I whimpered and complained a whole bunch.  Even when the finish was less than 2 miles away I still felt like I was never going to make it and it was really hard to keep going.  But you know what?  I did make it.  And do you know what my time was?  1:58:29!  I even placed third in my age group.  While I'm certainly glad I reached my goal, I wasn't too happy with the way I did it and learned some important lessons for my next half marathon.  I've been trying to be more mentally engaged while I run and I try to push myself, even when I think I can't make it.

Within sight of the finish line

We made it!  Sophie ran the kid's race

After the race we indulged ourselves at the Eastern Idaho State Fair.  My family used to go up the fair quite a bit when I was a kid, so it was fun to do it again and great to introduce it to Sophie.

The ultimate fair food- funnel cake

Stinky pigs

Loren and Sophie took a ride on the Ferris Wheel

Even though this race was months ago, I'm glad I got this post written.  Today I signed up for the Race to Robie Creek Half Marathon in April, which is supposed to be one of the toughest races in these parts.  My time may not be faster, but I will be mentally tougher, so bring it on!

1 comment:

  1. Congrats! I am super impressed and impressed that you want to do it again! :)