Sunday, February 26, 2012

What a difference a year makes

I still remember my first half marathon like it was yesterday. I met my mom and sister down in Disney World for the Princess Half. To say I was nervous is an understatement! I ate the perfect dinner the night before, got a full eight hours of sleep and made sure I ate and drank the right things that morning. The 13.1 miles were hard, but some of the most rewarding I will have ever run. Years have passed and I now have plenty of halts, both good and bad, under my belt. Today adds another to that list, the Hyannis Half, but man have times changed.

I received an invite for a going away party for someone I have known almost my entire length in Boston. The party was to be held at 9 pm at a local bar on Saturday night. With the best intentions, I figured I would make an appearance for 30-45 minutes and be home in bed by 10:30. We all know how plans usually don't work like planned. I ended up drinking and eating things that would not be considered half appropriate, but was oh so tasty. Add to that the staying out way too late, I found myself with about 3-4 hours of sleep. The lack of sleep normally would be fine if I had slept well the night before, but the 6 hours on Friday just wouldn't cut it. I was beyond exhausted!

My alarm went off bright and early and I headed on out with breakfast in hand and a change of clothes. I tried to choke down breakfast on the hour and a half car ride, but it just wasn't sitting right. I made it down to the race site in epic time, checked in and had about an hour to kill. The ballroom was getting packed, so I headed to the car for a break. About 30 minutes beforenthe race, I hit the bathroom and met up with fellow teammates at the starting line.

The race went off and runners started to move forward. The first mile was amazing as were the second and third. I was flying and felt amazing with an awesome pace. Then it hit...the feeling of being sick. With no porta potties in sight, my pace slowed down significantly as I tried to hold my composure. It wasn't until mile 6ish that I found a coveted portapottie with line to boot. The next 3 miles were again a blast and I started to pick up my pace quite a bit. For some reason, I felt awful again with only a 5k to go. My legs and body felt great, but I felt like I was on a ship in rocky seas. I struggled to keep it together to finish, but managed to pick off some of the slower runners as I was headed towards the finish. With a mile to go, I knew there was no way I was going to PR and my only goal was to finish. I crossed the finish line, stretched, saw some teammates and got myself cleaned up. I met up with some tri teammates for lunch before heading back to Boston.

The results of the race were somewhat disappointing as I was far from my goal time. Yet, I am also happy with my results. In life you have to pick priorities and this weekend it was celebrating an awesome dude. Races will come and go, but seeing these people was a rare occasion. Am I glad I went? Of course! I also know that my body felt amazing later in the day which meant I had plenty more to give. Now on to the next race and seeing what that brings. I'll be back in Vermont and my goal is to shave 5-10 minutes from last year.

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