13.1 Miles – Runners of Steel

by Lindsey on May 8, 2012

in J&L Get Fit

Scratch another one off the life list, we did it! Justin and I ran and finished the Pittsburgh Half-Marathon!

(This is why Jut’s family calls me a “smidget”)

In the days leading up to the race, I started to get really nervous and anxty about it. I even got teary-eyed in the parking garage before the race, because I’m an emotional wrecking ball and that’s what I do. Once I calmed myself down, and remembered that I had been training for seven months for this, I was ready to rock it.

We didn’t cross the starting line until about 10 minutes after the gun went off, because there were 27,000 runners! immediately, we both took off up the side, to get around all the walkers, and I was finally able to spot the 2:15 pacer. My theory was that if I could keep up with that her, and even if I feel behind her, I could attempt to finish in around two and a half hours. That was my plan, but of course, plans change.

At the 5th mile or so, I had to pee so bad I couldn’t take it, so I shuffled off to the nearest set of port-o-potties and stood in line for what seemed like forever. This crushed my time and I was so mad that I didn’t go just one more time before we started. This also made me completely lose my momentum, which I knew would happen as soon as I let myself stop running.

Surprisingly, I beat my goal of finishing in under three hours, with an official chip time of 2:48:57. I would have loved to be closer to 2:30, but now I have something to aim for next year. And yes, I have already agreed to run it again! Now that I have a personal record, I want to beat it! Justin did really well too, with a chip time of 2:10:20. He was really hoping to break two hours, but considering he injured his calf on our last training run, and had been struggling with it all week, I think he did amazing!

Overall, I felt insanely unprepared for this run, even after all my training. After my bathroom break, I went back and forth between running and walking. I did my best to keep up a good speed, but it was scorching hot, with very few shaded areas, which is NOT the conditions we trained in. We also didn’t practice on many hills, so I was getting killed by the inclines that came with each of the five bridges we crossed. In the next year of training, I’ll definitely be running more hills, running in the heat, and running longer distances. Jut and I both agreed that we would like to do a few 15 mile runs, so when it’s time to do 13.1, we know we’ve done more. This year, his longest run was 11 miles, and mine was 10, so once we passed those points, we really had to push hard through the last few.

I’m so incredibly proud of both myself and Justin for setting our minds to this, and accomplishing it! As it says in my About page, I’m really good at starting things, but horrible at following through. There were so many times over the last few months that I wanted to quit. I was struggling through runs that should have been getting easier, and I was not enjoying myself at all. I was so ready to declare myself a non-runner, and just give up. But Justin, along with many twitter friends, kept me motivated to stick with it, and I’m so glad I did! The sensation I felt when crossing that finish line was indescribable! It hard to believe I even did it, aside from the fact that my legs are killing me today :)

In seven months I went from being unable to run one mile, to finishing a half-marathon. I can’t think of any better way to show people that you really can do anything you set your mind to. Not a single second of it was easy, but it was so, so worth it.

What big goals are you working toward right now? Any other trying-to-be runners out there? I’d love to help keep you motivated!

San May 8, 2012 at 11:29 am

This is amazing! Congratulations! You finished and that’s all that really matters :)

I run – but I don’t know if I would ever attempt a (half-) marathon. I am just not passionate enough about running, and besides, as I shared in my latest blog post, I have tendencies for meteoropathy and don’t do well running outside. (Have to research that.)

Lindsey May 10, 2012 at 8:43 am

Thanks San!! I never ran before we signed up for this race. I guess I knew if I didn’t have something to train for, I’d never stick to it! Now that I’ve done it, my outlook on running has completely changed, and I almost look forward to it now! (Almost…)

I’d never heard of meteoropathy until your post! Hopefully it’s nothing super serious?

katelin May 8, 2012 at 7:45 pm

that is awesome, nicely done! woo !

Lindsey May 10, 2012 at 8:44 am

Thanks Katelin!!

Amber May 10, 2012 at 2:13 pm

CONGRATS! So great your fiance ran it with you too! I wish my fiance ran!

Lindsey May 10, 2012 at 3:12 pm

Thanks! Reading about your training totally inspired me when I was ready to quit! And yea, I was so glad Jut ran too. Neither of us were runners before, and it was fun to achieve this together!

Manderz May 15, 2012 at 10:28 pm

You are so incredibly amazing!!! Way to go (both of you) on training for and completing your half. :)

Lindsey May 16, 2012 at 10:43 am

Thank you!!

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