Let’s just start with I did it. I didn’t know if I would be able to, but I did. Eight days ago I started and completed my second half marathon.
And this weekend I began reading a book about optimal nutrition to lose weight while running long distances and for pre- and post-race. It makes hubby just chuckle. I said I would never run another half after the one in September…and I just finished my second and am now studying nutrition for continuing this type of long distance running longer and am already prepping mentally for my third one.
This second half started off really hard. I accidentally found out most of this half was off-road, which I have only run once ever.
It started off in grass. With the final pacer asking me in the first half mile if I could run faster because I was not running the required minimum pace. I bawled like a baby for the next mile until another pacer started running with me and slowly I calmed down. From there on out the volunteers and people along the way were amazing.
They had water almost every mile. They even offered beer, mimosas, and bacon at the halfway party point. I only needed to use the water I brought once toward the end. They had funny signs, people cheering, and at one of the biggest hills they had people dressed up as superheroes to run up with you–Wonder Woman and the oldest runner guy I have ever seen were on either side of me as I went up the huge, dirt hill at mile 8. The pacer running with me told me, “this is called the 8-mile holler because you will be hollerin’ by the time you get done!!”
My running companion would go just a bit ahead as we got to the groups of people cheering and tell them my name to people were cheering specifically for me.
Marilyn disappeared for a bit and I was joined by one of the medic guys on a bike. I don’t know how he went that slowly and kept the bike upright, but he did. He complimented me on how incredibly consistent my pace was.
I was rejoined by my pacer and the sweeper who swore I was going faster than he at mile 9 so he didn’t force me off the course–and this guy.
I thought he was just a piece of wood as I ran up to him–when I realized he was a turtle of that size–the sweeper took a picture of him for me as I kept moving along. And slowly mile 11 was done.
I came in dead last, but I did it. All 13.1 miles of dirt roads, two tracks, and hills, with just a few paved miles in there. And I did it in just 2 minutes more than my all paved maiden half marathon last September!!!
The sweeper could not believe that I was undertaking this race as my second half marathon. Turns out it is considered one of the most beautiful and one of the most difficult halfs in the country!!