Alright. But let’s talk about the race. I got to the parking, by the airport, around 7:15am. I walked up to a school bus, the shuttle that would take us to the start of the half marathon, to be told that they were full and that I had to wait until the next bus. Oh well, I could see the next one down the road. So it pulled up and I got in, had to wait about 5 minutes before we left, but oh well.
So the bus dropped us off at the high school which was actually the finish line of the race, we’d have to walk about 5 minutes to the start line. Well I got into the gym, found some people that I know from Ferndale Area Runners (FAR) and started to get together everything that I needed to race since I was going to check my bag. WELL, I looked at my phone to see that I’d missed a call from both my mom and my dad, they decided to come to the beginning of the race, not just the end like I thought they were going to.
So I finally got a hold of them and they walked into the gym. My dad being awesome held onto my bag while my mom and I went and used the restroom. Now HERE is the only thing that could have been better, they could have opened up the locker rooms. There were only TWO stalls in the bathroom in the HS. This meant that even though I was in line 25minutes before the start of the race, I still ended up grabbing my things from my dad in a frenzy and jogging over to the start line.
Not totally necessary, however, because once I got to the start we waited for about 7 minutes before we actually started. That was because we were listening to the people from the organization talk, and luckily it wasn’t freezing, so I didn’t mind.
THEN WE WERE OFF! (Thanks to my parents for all of these pictures!!)
The race was great. The first mile – mile and a half was pretty crappy roads. Lots of potholes and a few places where there was ‘ice’.. I say ‘ice’ because you can tell that the race people salted the crap out of it so that no one would ACTUALLY hit ice, so it was really just wet.
Online it said that there were Aid stations/bathrooms around miles 2, 5, 8, and 10. I’m not exactly sure how accurate that was, but I know that if I would have needed water and/or a bathroom that I wouldn’t have ever needed to wait too long. There was even one Gu station, I believe around mile 4-6, which was nice. I grabbed one just incase, but didn’t end up needing it.
We got lucky too that the wind was WITH us for the majority of the way. For the first 2-ish miles it was ‘against us’ but it wasn’t really blowing, so you couldn’t tell. (I kept looking to see a flag moving so that I could make sure that it really WAS a head wind!) So when we turned around mile 2-3 ish it was is a beautiful tail wind!
So miles (we’ll call it 2.5) 2.5 – 9 had a tail wind! I could tell that I was flying, continuing to not look at my Garmin so that I wouldn’t psych myself out, I just went with it. My music was great, the view was beautiful, it was a beautiful day (I think it was around 34* at the start of the race); perfect temperature and not a cloud in sight.
At mile 9 when we turned, hello head wind. Honestly, everyone was saying that it was bad, but in all honesty it didn’t slow me down at all. YES it was a head wind, but NO it wasn’t that bad. After almost 10 miles without it, I figured a little extra ‘umph’ to the end was all I needed to get through it.
Right before mile 10 we went through an airplane hangar, it was pretty awesome. There was band playing in there, though I had headphone on and couldn’t hear them, a lot of people said that it was pretty cool. So we went through the hangar, up a bit, did a 180 and came back towards the hangar, then turned right to the start of the 5k. You know that what means?! We all actually were just running a 5k with a 10 mile warm up.. I kept telling myself that, and I think it’s why I PRed.
So at that point we only had 3.1 miles left. Time to kick it.. And by kick it, I mean don’t speed up and lose juice. I wanted to keep consistent to the end because I had a feeling I was on track to PR.
At mile 12 I finally looked at my Garmin ONLY to tell me what my last mile pace was, 9:17! WHAT?! I didn’t do anything but keep going at that point, I knew I was going to sprint to the finish, so I kept pace.
The finish was pretty cool, we ended up ON the track for the last 200 meters. I felt like I was in HS track all over again, and I ran like I was. Looked at my Garmin for the time at that point and realize I was DEFINITELY going to PR. So I ran like the wind!
My Garmin put me at 2:01:44, officially I ended up with a chip time of 2:01:38! My PR prior to this race was 2:03:03.. safe to say I killed my PR! Getting SOOOO close to being under 2hrs!
All in all, the race was AWESOME! Not to mention that we got probably the coolest shirts that I have ever seen! If there is a place to nominate a race for the best T-shirts, PLEASE let me know, because Rock CF DEFINITELY takes the cake!
Alright, enjoy some more random pictures! Thanks for reading guys!