I DID IT!! I did the ZOOMA half marathon Sunday morning. Not only did I finish, but I ran the ENTIRE way! And I was not last, in fact, I finished in the middle somewhere.
The morning started out a bit crazy. We ended up leaving later than I had hoped and panic started within my guts. I don't do well with being late, no matter what. I really don't do well when I am supposed to be meeting someone and warming up and peeing before a huge race. I got there with about 7 minutes to spare and really did not need the warm up since my adrenilin was pumping so much from being late, plus you just get caught up in the excitement.
It was 37 degrees people, yes and that is without the wind chill factor. My legs were frozen but I had the good sense to wear gloves which were fantastic. The first mile or so I had a pain in my right shin and thought it was going to be an awful run, but that eventually subsided or got numb. My running partner did a great job of pulling me back when I would get excited and get going too fast. I brought sports jelly beans to keep my glucose levels up and they are actually quite good. I could easily eat a couple every few miles and not break stride or worry about puking up the gu stuff people eat.
The HILLS were torturous! There was a hill in the first half mile and I was cursing about not even being warmed up yet and having to scale the mountain. Little did I know about what was awaiting me. There were two hills that really made me pray the entire time up them. One was so steep that they had to make it into a "double" hill with a slightly leveled part in the middle to break it up. My heart rate was creeping up quickly during that hill so we had to slow down for a couple of minutes at the top so I could get it under control.
We had to stop and pee at the 10 mile potty stop and that actually took a few minutes. I was anxious to get going before I stiffened up and had to get stern with my running partner who was enjoying sitting on the porta-potty.
The littlest monkey woke up around mile 12. We were so excited to see that mile marker and he must have felt the excitement, it was also here that the sun went into hiding and it started spitting ice at us. I had one more good sized hill to go up and littlest monkey seemed to be pushing me up the hill from the inside. No kicks, just those pushes that seem to push your entire uterus around! It was uncomfortable, but I had a small conversation with him and that helped that last mile pass by quicker.
The most amazing was coming around the corner with my last good sprinting push and hearing my name yelled out as I crossed the finish line with a really great friend and my mom watching and cheering for me. It was like a cloud around me and I don't even remember feeling the rest of my body, just hearing and seeing! I made the poor girl cutting my timing chip off bend down to get it, pretty sure my legs were like bricks at that moment and I could not get it to bend at the knee for her. I hugged my friend, grabbed my awesome finisher's necklace, and found my mom right about the time that the tears started flowing. They were good tears of course. Tears of joy, relief, pride, excitement, exhaustion all bundled up into one big snotty and frozen face!
I can't begin to explain the pride I have in myself and my friend for finishing 13.1 miles and finishing with what I consider a great time of 2 hours 27 minutes 04 seconds. That includes our pee break, the slowing down for killer hills, the slower pace when wiping orange gatorade off of my face and out of my nose (I just can't seem to get the drinking while running thing down!), and the slowing for a picture at the end where we are smiling (and hopefully with eyes open). 5 months pregnant at that! I can't wait to see this beautiful baby boy and tell him the story over and over again, we already have a very special bond.
I am also very proud of my new to running friend who finished her first 5K with a great time she should really be proud of! She joined the C25K program after I suckered her into this race and has been doing an AMAZING job. I am so excited for her and hope she thinks about running the half with me next year! I hope to have a few pictures to post soon.