Note: These people do not include myself, but it made for excellent people watching for 13.1 miles. I’d like to give a special shout out to “Mr. Peanut Gallery” who made the best comments during miles 7 and 8. I was sad when we parted ways.
Last weekend, Gia, Jocelyn, and I took a quick trip down to Miami for the ING Miami Half Marathon. Incidentally, it also happened to be my birthday last week and what better way to ring in 27 than escaping the NYC arctic tundra and running a half marathon?
Oh wait, I know, a zumba class.
And, to top it off dinner at Barton G, where the presentation of the food reigns and God answered my 10 year old birthday wish with an ice cream sundae larger than my head.
Going from 20 degrees to 75 degrees and humid was quite a shock, but a very welcome one! Normally, I’m not a fan of early, early morning running, but I was pretty glad by mile 6 that this race started at 6:15 am. Plus, this allowed us to check out the clubs just as the Miami club faithful were leaving.
I went into this race open to the opportunity that it might be a great day, but really not expecting too much. This would be my longest run since the Richmond marathon and I have been battling this weird right leg ache (fairly certain it is a nerve related problem).
But, you never know until you try. So, I tried.
It revealed I have some work to do. And a right leg to fix [in the works – current therapy: laser, nerve flossing, acupuncture).
I ran 1:53:55 with one bathroom stop (first ever in a race). Not my best, not my worst. The head and humidity was definitely a factor, but I think a bigger factor was that I’m not race tough anymore.
I have a really hard time focusing lately. For the first 4 miles, my thoughts mostly consisted of “rank list” over and over again, but to the tune of the “Jaws” theme.
From about 3-6, I felt really good so I sped up, or at least it felt like I did. We’ll never know as I wasn’t wearing a Garmin or taking splits [maybe should have done that].
I’d say around mile 8 the heat started to drain me and I took a bathroom pit stop out of dire necessity.
I tried to repeat little mantras to myself, but none of them seemed to particularly resonate with me. I wouldn’t say my thoughts were negative. They were mostly blase (sorry, can’t figure out how to get the accent on the e there) like “well, it is sort of shocking going from 20 degrees to 75 so don’t kill yourself” or “this is really just a hard effort long run” or “well, you do have this shooting pain down the side of your leg, maybe best not to push it.”
I wouldn’t say I wasn’t trying, because I didn’t “just jog” it. But, it was more of an acceptance of what was happening that day and not getting overly upset over something that wasn’t a PR or a stellar day.
In the past, I would overly berate myself if it wasn’t a PR or at least close to it. I could think of a million bad things I did during the race, but I can also glean many positive things from it, too – I got in a harder effort for 13 miles, I picked up on a few weaknesses that I need to work on in the coming months, I am [mostly] healthy and able to run 13 miles, and I enjoyed just being in Miami and able to run.
Maybe that’s part of getting older – being a little bit nicer to yourself and appreciating what you have. I’m lucky I was able to go to Miami and lucky I’m able to run a half marathon.
I guess turning 27 has made me soft.
I have a lot of work to do between now and April. And, I’m looking forward to it.
TELL ME: BEST BIRTHDAY DESSERT YOU’VE EVER HAD? RUN MIAMI BEFORE?
Until next time…