I made it! I ran the Top of Utah Half Marathon yesterday near Logan and I survived! It was my first race and I had no idea what to expect. I achieved my goal of running the entire 13 miles and I finished in 2 hrs 19 mins. The run was beautiful-- the first half or so was in the canyon just as the sun was beginning to rise. There were more than 2000 people who ran and watching the start of the race is something I will never forget. I was in the middle of the pack at the starting line and all I could see were heads bobbing up and down. It was a cool feeling to be running with so many people with a common goal.
I was pleasantly surprised at how good I felt running. My stomach had been bugging me since Friday, but I think it was just nerves. I started feeling the burn at about 11 miles. From mile 11 to 12 the course was uphill, so that was pretty challenging since it was so close to the end. I just had to mentally push through it and kept thinking about all of the work I had put into training. I knew I'd be kicking my own butt if I didn't run the whole thing. The last mile was a straight shot to the finish and you could see the crowd. My adrenaline really kicked in and I finished strong. It felt so good crossing that finish line and seeing some familiar faces!
I feel really good about setting this goal and achieving it even though it was rarely convenient. We were gone for nearly half of the 9-week training schedule I followed and it was challenging finding time to run with a baby. I found myself running in hotel gyms, down mountains near my parents' cabin, through neighborhoods in Idaho Falls and at all times of the day and night. I'm glad all the work paid off.
Here I am with my "bragging t-shirt." I followed the RunnersWorld.com half marathon training schedule and I would recommend it to anyone considering running one. I remember looking at the schedule in the beginning and being nervous about it, but it really does work.
I think I'll take it easy this week :)