Friday, March 20, 2015

Friday 5: My First Half

Good morning!  Friday is finally here!  I can't believe that Shamrock weekend is THIS weekend!  I'm linking up with Mar, Cynthia, and Courtney today!  Make sure to check out some of the amazing blogs in the link up (or add your own!).  Since this weekend is my 5 year anniversary of running half marathons, I figured I would tell you guys 5 things about my very first one!  (Sorry guys, there are no dorky pictures from the race. I literally ran with nothing.  My brother had the hotel key and my license just in case, but I wasn't concerned with much at this one haha!)

We take running VERY seriously.

1. It was the Shamrock Half Marathon.  I can't really remember why I chose this one.  Maybe because it was close, maybe I had heard great things, maybe friends had suggested it?  My brother and I had previously ran in the Wicked 10k and Virginia is for Lovers 14k, so maybe we figured to just keep going.  Either way, it was an excellent choice.  (Yes, J&A only had three races back then!  They've grown SO much!)

My mom made me this amazing shadow box to hold my first medals!

2. I made up my own training plan.  So, I was in college and I ran a lot.  It was a great stress reliever, I had friends who ran, and I had the most gorgeous place ever to run.  The only real plan was to keep running whenever I felt like it and then add a mile to my long run each weekend.  How nice would that be to do that now?  I remember coming home and telling my roommate that I ran 7 miles and I had never done that before and I was super excited.  She was very patient listening to all my running talk.  (She still is.)  For some reason, I did my 9 miler and 10 miler on the treadmill.  I guess I was scared then, too, of getting stuck far away?  Someone had told me that 10 miles was the longest I needed to run before my race, because "if you can do 10 you can do 13."  Well, ok.

3. I was faster than I anticipated. I remember being blown away by the fact that I had to put a predicted race time.  "HOW AM I SUPPOSED TO KNOW!?"  I ended up running about 30 minutes faster than I had anticipated.  Not a bad feeling.

4. I didn't use any fuel.  Probably had something to do with the fact that in college you're invincible and a beast.  I just didn't feel the need for it like I do now.  Also, at that point I had never even really heard of it. When I was handed a Gu on the race course I held on to it until mile 9 and then took it.  I will never forget the disgusting, warm (from holding it for 3 miles) strawberry mess.  (So, I also ran in the race shirt.  I figured that if they gave it to me then it must be a good shirt to run in haha!  So glad I'm too cool for that now.)  Basically, I had no idea of everything that running could entail.

Does pizza count?

5. I swore it was my last.  Don't get me wrong, I was SO proud of myself for finishing.  I tell people all the time that there's no feeling like crossing the finish line of your first half.  I remember the second I stopped running my quads cramped up in a major way.  It was horrible! My brother and I didn't even stay for the post race party and just hobbled back to the hotel.  It took me a whole year until I was ready to tackle another one.

What was your first half (or other race!) like?  Have a great weekend! Good luck to everyone running Shamrock this weekend!  Come say hi at the expo!


  1. That is such a cool shadow box. IVe been wanting to get one done for my Boston 2 Big Sur challenge. I remember during my first half I didn't take any fuel nor water. Boy what you learn throughout the yrs. -L

    1. Thank you! She does good work :-) Haha, we have certainly learned a lot, but I think I stress more about it now than I used to ;-)

  2. Love this!! So sweet your mom made you a shadow box. See you soon friend!

  3. Just found your blog! Have a great race this weekend! My first Half was in 2010 in Boston! I signed up because I read an article in a magazine called "Yes! You CAN Run a Half-Marathon!" so I did =) Two hours after crossing the Finish, I signed up for my first full marathon and haven't looked back ;)

  4. Good luck this weekend! I can't wait to hear all about it!

  5. How cool you ran your first half with your brother! My first half was Disney and I thought it was the best thing ever. I also ran faster than what I thought I could. It also flew by! Good luck at Shamrock! Can't wait to read all about it.