As you know, J became a half marathoner yesterday. It was amazing and I am so very proud of him. His official finishing time was 2:57:10. And like I said, I was by his side every step of the way (we even held hands across the finish line). Here's how it went down ...
J and I woke up at 4:30. We got out of bed, gathered our things and got dressed in our coordinated lime, white and black outfits. This is us right before walking out the door (I did get a shot of J smiling, but I think this is funnier) ...We hopped in the car and drove the hour to Fredericksburg. Well, kind of. We had to stop. Mother Nature was not J's friend yesterday. In fact, she would torture him for the first four miles of the race. NOT.FUN. Anyway, once we arrived, we met up with JBR (our friend and another first time half marathoner). After yet another bathroom break, we rushed over to the start corral.
J and I woke up at 4:30. We got out of bed, gathered our things and got dressed in our coordinated lime, white and black outfits. This is us right before walking out the door (I did get a shot of J smiling, but I think this is funnier) ...
And before we knew it, we were off. The first four miles of the race were good (other than that whole Mother Nature thing). We were holding a comfortable pace for J and JBR. Every once in a while, I would speed up and act as race photographer. Here they are at mile 3.
And here I am. I took this while running. And JBR snuck in the shot too.
At mile 4, J had to stop and end the fight with Mother Nature. He ran into a church and JBR continued on without us. (JBR finished in 2:39:25.) After six minutes, J returned and we ventured on. Despite the added time, we were still holding a decent pace. But somewhere around 6 or 7 miles, J's hip and knee started acting up. His hip kept him from running at all in the last two weeks. We hoped the time off would help it, but the constant downhills of the first 10 miles of the course took a pounding on it. And he was in pain (even though he smiled every time I busted out the camera).
At mile 10, the uphill climb began. And the next two miles were basically straight up. We gained over 300 feet of elevation in those two miles. J started to feel it. And we took some walk breaks. I did my best to "push" him on. I knew that he really wanted to break three hours and if we could hold our pace we could. We alternated walk/run for the remainder of the course. As we entered the finish chute, we knew we were going to go sub-three. J asked to hold my hand as we finished. And we crossed the line together. It was awesome.
J was tired and sore. And I was convinced that he would never want to do another half again. But you know what? I was wrong. He's caught the bug. He's talking to JBR about doing it again. He even told me this morning that he might just do Richmond in November. How sweet is that?
As for me, the race was awesome. Here's why:
1. It was really nice to run without pressure.
2. I got to take it easy (my average heart rate was 130 compared to last week's half where it was 180).
3. I was able to support J 100%, which I loved.
4. The race helped me set a new weekly mileage PR. I finished the week with 41.89 miles.
5. I also broke 500 miles for the year during the race. I am currently at 511.16 miles.
6. And I became eligible for Half Fanatic status. Sweet!