I began training back in December to run my first ever half marathon. The day finally arrived last Sunday, and quite frankly it is a day I will never forget! The race was on the same day as my daughter's 9th birthday, so we planned a family mini-vacation and spent a long weekend in New Orleans.
We took the girls to the zoo on Friday and of course made a visit to Sucre' for a little decadence.
On Saturday we went to the Audobon Insectarium where we learned a lot about bugs and dung and even had the opportunity to eat a bug! That's right I ate a bug, but I was just trying to make sure I got enough protein
|At the expo the day before|
I got a bit more nervous when I went by to pick up my number and race packet on Saturday and realized the race organizers had set up a huge expo of all sorts of running gear, supplies & memorabilia. I could not believe how many people were there and how crowded and yet well organized it was.
We had a great opportunity to see some old friends from when we had lived in Texas, they were there to run as well. It was great to see them and glad they were doing so well.
Finally Sunday arrived and the race was scheduled to start at 7:00am. I was out of bed getting ready by 4:30. The beautiful wife and kids dropped my off in Downtown New Orleans around 6:15 and I begin to make my way to the start village. On my way I bumped into an old Schoolmate and co-worker who had decided to run his first 1/2 marathon as a fundraiser for a child who had died from a rare skin disease. You can learn more about Scott's race on his page.
I was feeling great and having a great run. my body was feeling great and I was keeping a pace of less than 10 minutes per mile until Mile 7. I learned a very valuable lesson. Never let your nervous energy get the best of you and "over hydrate" I drank too much water and had to stop at a port-a-pottie. even more unfortunate is that I was not the only one. After standing in line for nearly 3 minutes and finally relieving myself I really struggled to regain my rhythm. My pace never got below 10:00 again, but I was still feeling good
|Look at the mass of humanity|
|9 Miles in and feeling great!|
The last 2 miles I actually had to walk a little bit, but I would not allow myself to walk more than a few steps then I would keep running and keep encouraging myself, I was almost there. My goal for the race was to finish in 2:15:00 and I am a little disappointed I did not make that, I am However thrilled that I finished. When you consider the toll the bathroom break took on my time 2:20:15 isn't too bad!
For now, I have to focus on recovering and resting; but I can't wait to do it again, only better!