I ran my second half marathon! I still can’t believe I’m saying it. I haven’t even hit my official “running anniversary”, and I’ve got quite a few miles under my belt. This spring half had been on my calendar since about January.
The half was part of the Drake Relays Hy-Vee Road Races, and was on Sunday, April 28. The Drake Relays are a pretty big deal around here, and are several days of races (and partying for students, from what I understand). These are for-real races, though – you’ve got to be good to do them. But the road races, anyone can sign up for.
This was the first year it was sponsored by Hy-Vee. This was also my first year being involved. So, I’ve heard from a lot of people that things are different this year, but being as I’ve got nothing to compare it to, I’m going to judge it as such.
Packet pick up was on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday morning, pre-race. Pretty standard stuff. With registration, you got a gear bag, t-shirt, and socks. Pretty good deal, but the race was also $55 when I signed up, so I had hoped for some good swag.
The bag was great, but the shirt is HUGE. I got a small, and it’s pretty loose on me. Which is a bummer, because it’s a nice dri-tech shirt. The socks aren’t my style (I like no-show) but I’ll keep them around as they are Asic socks and are pretty nice, other than the cuff. Is that part of the sock called a cuff?
The race started at 8:00 a.m. Phyll dropped me off around 7:30 so I could walk to the start and get acclimated. Oh, and use the restroom. Tip: the stadium restrooms were open pre-race. No Porta-Potty for me!
The race start was pretty congested, but I think that was just due to it not being super wide. Most races are like that, so it didn’t bother me too much. There was a nice moment of silence for Boston, the anthem – and we were off!
The race started off downhill, which was bad for me – how can you not run faster when you’re going downhill? But I tried to hold back. Then, the hills started. Oye ve. (I don’t even know if that’s how you spell that…)
The hills on this raced were HARD. I mean, I knew there would be hills, but I was not prepared at all for just how much more extreme they were than the training I had been doing.
My first 10 or 11 miles were pretty good. Tough, but steady. The last few had the absolute worst hills, and I had to take a few walking breaks. This really frustrated me because one of my goals for the race was not to walk. But the combination of the tough course, and the heat, just took it out of me.
There was a water and Gatorade station at about every mile, with Gu, candy, and fruit at some of them. I did try the Gu – but barely. One taste and I was done. That stuff is so gross! The texture. I can’t even. Oh, and my friend Karla was at one of the water stations. So nice to see a friendly face!
Right before I got to the end, I found Phyll filming me I tried my best to give him a smile, even though I felt terrible. I was done!
The finish for the race was really awesome, going around the stadium track and through the finish. I felt like an Olympian! Well, kind of. The part of me which wasn’t ready to die at that point did.
I crossed the finish line to hearing my name – it was so nice having my parents there cheering me on! I got my medal, and headed outside.
I met with my parents and Phyll and drank some water.
Here we go again. My stomach started flipping and flopping. And I knew what that meant. I tried resting a bit, drinking water. But to no avail – I found a trash can, and lost my cookies. Or really, lost my water, as that’s all I threw up.
I was SO mad. If you guys remember my first half, I got sick then, too.
And here’s where I ask for your help. I ran with the same food in my stomach as I had on training runs a (KIND bar and my Energy Bits). I did drink more water, but it was much hotter than my typical runs. WHY am I getting sick post (long) races??
I’ve got two thoughts on it:
- Stopping/slowing down too quickly at the end of the race?
- Too much water?
I’m at a loss. More guess and check, I suppose.
Overall, I was happy with how the race went!
My overall pace got pretty messed up by the walking, but I’m really happy with my 5k pace – only 40 seconds to trim off to make my 2013 goal of a 5k in 29 minutes! Granted, the 5k was basically downhill, but it does give me a lot of hope of catching that goal.
I also knocked 8 minutes and 30 seconds off my last half-marathon time, which is great. I really really really wish I had a Garmin so I had more detail. MapMyRun didn’t record the splits :(.
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I’m excited by the progress, and can’t wait until my fall half-marathon. How much more time can I knock off? Can I run the ENTIRE time?
Two questions today:
Tell me about your best race improvement – how did it feel?
Anybody have this same stomach issue? Help!
Oh, and did I mention I’ve got a relay tomorrow? Market to Market – here I come!