Sunday, March 27, 2011

One goal down!

Yesterday I completed my first half marathon, the "National" Marathon (yipee!!) and, believe it or not, it was actually a really great experience!

Going into yesterday's race I had completed 10 weeks of training that included its fair share of aches, pains, and doubts. At one point I seriously considered stopping my training because I was experiencing the most awful shin splints. But, thanks to encouragement from Chris and my brother, Will, I got over the pain and doubts. After successful 8- and 9-mile runs over the last month, I realized that I could finish the race, but I didn't think it was going to pretty. Especially after my last long run of 10.5 miles, which didn't go so well. I finished, but it was hard. Really hard. I knew I could finish the Half, but I had a feeling that it would be hard and I would struggle.

Race day came before I knew it. I wasn't really nervous, but more anxious. I wanted it to start, and I wanted it to be all over so that I would know the outcome. I would know if I prepared for the race as well as I could have, or, if I wasn't cut-out for this long-distance running thing . . .

And . . . it went well! Really really well! Not only did I finish the race as I had wanted, but I also finished with the time of 2:07! (I had hoped to run less than 10-minute miles, but to have actually done it feels awesome!)

Here's a map of the course, which was really fabulous and made getting through those miles easier!

View Larger Map

As you might be able to see, we got to run right past the Library of Congress, the Capitol, and Union Station. Past Smithsonian museums, the Washington Monument, and the White House! (I was secretly hoping Obama would be out cheering us on!) I ran past some old workplaces - the Hall of States and the Department of the Interior - and some great neighborhoods - Capitol Hill, Dupont Circle, Columbia Heights, and H St. NE. We even ran through Howard University's campus, who provided the runners with 2 DJs playing old school hip-hop, which was a huuuuuge pick-me-up around the 8th/9th miles.

Here are some photos Chris took:

Corral 6 and RFK Stadium (where I started)

In the middle of the "Connecticut Ave/Kalorama Climb" (I was slowing down to hand Chris my headband!)

Me, next to the mummy guy. Chris told me I was going faster than he thought I'd be going at this point (10-mile mark-ish)

After finishing! "I ran through history." Love it.
One of the most memorable moments was when a woman, most likely a tourist, yelled to us, "You're almost there!" A little after the 3-mile mark. Myself, along with a few other runners around me, had a good laugh over that one! Also, that darn "Connecticut Ave./Kalorama Climb," as I like to call, it kicked my butt. Well, actually my thighs, because boy are they sore today! That chunk of the race was a good 2-3mile climb. And it burned. Buuuur-urned! But, after I got over that hill, I definitely knew I was good to the finish!

Like I mentioned on my resolution goal list, I have always wanted to run a half marathon and I am so so glad I finally did it! I am now seriously considering running one the Marine Corp Historic Half in Fredericksburg, VA on my birthday, and possibly the Virginia Beach Rock n' Roll Half at the end of the summer! (And, I'd love the company if anyone wants to join me!)


  1. Congratulations!!! I'm really impressed (I can't run for the LIFE of me), and it must feel really great to accomplish something like that.

  2. Hey, I will run the Virgina Beach one with you!!! :) 1. I love virgina beach and 2. I love the rock and roll halfs! CONGRATS!

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  4. Thanks, Kara! It was a really great feeling, kinda like finishing a great hike, as I am sure you can relate too!

    Courtney - you should definitely plan on running the VA Beach RNR with me! It's Sept. 4 I think!


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