Tuesday, May 8, 2012

My 500 Festival Mini Marathon

I got up early and attempted my last efforts at hydration and fueling prior to heading downtown for the nations largest half marathon. 

Once we arrived in the middle of the half marathon chaos traffic, my stomach started having its own conversation.  I made my chauffeur, a.k.a. my husband do a quick detour to a nearby drugstore and grab me some Imodium.  I had never used this stuff, but coincidentally had read some suggestions from other lady runners via blogs and Facebook, who have frequent tummy issues who had said this keeps the stomach inactive long enough to get through your run.  Just say they were right, thankfully.  This wasn't the time for any unexpected pit stops.   

As usual, the course was full of spectators and performers.  There was quite the variety of musical bands, cheerleaders, and dancers. There were the repeats from previous years, the cloggers and the square dancers.  Most children were excited to high five any willing runner.  

I started off at a decent pace.  I knew this was not the day to go out too fast.  I maintained a decent pace and felt comfortable as anyone could running in 98% humidity.  Unlike my last half where at mile 10 my legs felt like concrete, my legs were still strong and pain free.  I think my recent endeavors on the weights at the gym had paid off.  Even though, my muscles were ready to run, the rest of me was not.  The heat was just too much.  It depleted any energy reserves I could have possibly had.   

Me, running & trying to not die
of a heat stroke.

We were warned about the heat and humidity.  Participants were sent emails, the news told us over and over again, it was going to be a hot one.  We were told to hydrate and hydrate well.  It didn't matter.  I hydrated like a man who was just told he was going to the desert. I seriously ate salt straight out of my hand.  I attempted to hit almost every water station. 

Guess how much that all mattered; obviously, not very much.  The humidity was literally almost to die for.  You know that warning all runners have heard over and over again like your mom telling you to brush your teeth for the thousandth time; if you're thirsty it's too late.  Well, it was too late for me.  Obviously, I survived or you wouldn't be reading this.

It could have been better, though.  I finished at 2:17:05.  I did shave 1 minute 22 seconds off of my last half from 2:18:27.  It was still disappointing.  My legs felt stronger and faster, yet the humidity zapped me of almost any extra energy.  I'm positive if it weren't for the heat and humidity I would have shaved off even more time.  Oh well, life goes on and there's always that next race.  

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  1. The humidity is brutal and when it happens on race day - simply not fair. I'm impressed that you cut time in that weather. A testament to your training!

  2. Thanks Barb! I was actually surprised myself. When my husband read my time to me from the Mini's tracker that was sending him texts, I did a little dance in the car.