I loved my first half marathon! It was a lot of fun, and we wound up having several other friends running it (Go Team Ricky!), which was great for the post-run party. My dad and his girlfriend came out as well, and were waiting for us with iPhone video camera queued up and regular digital in hand for the last mile.
First of all, it was a HUGE race. I thought, for some reason, that the race was a little smaller, so it was really cool to discover that the start line was on a main road closed specially for the event. It was big enough for incredible energy, but not so big that everyone was bunching up at the start line. I wore the new Garmin and really had a ball with it.
The course takes you through an older part of town that wraps along the St. Johns River, so you get glimpses of the river while enjoying some beautiful older residential homes and the massive Oak trees dripping with Spanish moss. The morning started out kind of foggy well, so it was really beautiful. It was also warm! E ran with me so we chatted the whole way, and he helped me pace myself since I kept wanting to go fast, faster, fastest!
I took a gel before the race started, which I don’t normally do but I think it helped a tremendous amount. Over the course of the race itself, I took three. I’m still trying to get my stomach to be comfortable with more than one. I felt great for the first eight miles, which seems to be my new comfort distance. After that was when it started to get a little tougher; I could start to feel it in my hips. By about mile 11, I was definitely tired but not dead. It did give me a new perspective on the marathon distance.
I wore my Spibelt as well, and that continues to impress. I fit all of my gels for the race in it and completely forgot it was there. I think next time I’ll let it double as my race belt as well – way better for a run than pinning it to my t-shirt.
Overall, I really loved the race. I spent most of yesterday hobbling because more than anything, my hips really hurt. Despite my routine body glide application, I also got chub rub in new and exciting places. By today I feel pretty good though. Planning on going out tomorrow for a nice recovery run.