Our Daily (G)races

Training to be the best wife, mom, runner, and person I can be each and every day....

Monday, January 26, 2015

3M Half Marathon recap

On Saturday I drove to Austin to see my friend Susan and to run the 3M Half Marathon with her. I was super excited to visit with her and to enjoy some girl time.  This was the first race I have run since my stress fracture.  My foot has been feeling pretty good lately so I was excited to be back in "get ready for a race" mode.  It has been too long!

Saturday night we went out to dinner with Susan's Austin friends.  We did a little carb loading at Buca di Beppo and it was quite yummy!

Susan stayed with me Saturday night.  It was fun to visit and chat about whatever.  I was also really nice that we had to walk a block from the hotel to the start.  That meant we could sleep in on Sunday!  Susan had us take pictures of our flat selves.  I had no idea what she meant at first.  My brain was being a little slow!

The plan was to match...purple girls!
Sunday morning we were up at 5:45 and leaving for the start at 6:30.  It was pretty chilly and still dark.  Thankfully we did not have to wait long for the start (7a).  A few pictures later and we were off!

I was freezing and Susan was being silly!
Me, Val who ran with me and Susan, Bianca, Susan, and Chrystal
I thought that maybe Susan's goal was to run a sub 2hour half, but wasn't sure until Saturday when we talked about the race.  Susan is a super strong person and a great athlete.  Way better than me for sure, but she isn't overly confident in her ability to run "fast".  It is hard. I am not discounting that at all.  I know that Susan had it in her.  This is a great course to run a fast time.  It is a net downhill course with some small climbs, but generally flat.  This was the time to run 1:59.59 and the weather was perfect for a great race.

I was obviously happy to be running
The funny thing about pacing Susan is that she gets so mad at me.  I say this based on one experience, but I knew it would happen again.  It doesn't bother me because I know I would be cranky with someone pushing me outside my comfort zone as well.  My job was to be Susan's biggest cheerleader, help her run the tangents, watch the course for her, and be totally mean if I had to be.  I reminded her to breathe, made sure she knew which way were were turning (shortest distance plan), told her to use her arms, and told her to suck it up on multiple occasions.

Happily running
Susan said after the race that she started to feel bad around mile 6.5.  I would never have known that.  I thought she was running really well until about mile 9.  By then I knew she was tired and not sure her goal would happen.  At mile 10 we had a "little discussion" about what was going to happen for the last 5K.  It went something like me yelling at Susan to decide right now what it would be...running hard or giving up and enjoying the last three miles.  Susan used some colorful language and got really angry with me.  But, it worked.  From that point on, it was all encouragement and reminders.  The 1:59.59 was hers to achieve. 

It was a really pretty day to run
The 11th mile was emotional for me.  I knew we would finish under 2 and I was so proud of Susan.  Mile 12 was hard for her.  That last mile always seem to last forever.  There isn't much left to give and it is big time hard.  Susan started with the "I can't" and I started with the "no negative talk now...just run hard now!"  I probably talked to her the most during those last two miles.  When we turned the last corner and could see the finish I just wanted to cry.  It was going to happen.  I saw Nicholas, Susan's oldest, and yelled at him to run with his mom to the finish.  I so wish I would have been faster with my camera for that moment.  Priceless! 1:59.38...enough said!!!

Susan's friend Val took this picture of us immediately after we finished.  Susan was exhausted and overwhelmed.  I was just so happy for her and beyond proud of Susan. These are the pictures I always wish I had.  The ones that capture the moment and I could not be more thankful to Val for snapping this gem!  I can't say anything the picture doesn't show.

Susan's friends Chrystal, Bianca, Val and us

Nicholas and Susan
I can't eloquently express what an honor it is for me that Susan trusts me with the task of helping her achieve her goals.  I am beyond grateful I've been able to do it twice now.  Truly grateful to you Susan!  You are such a strong runner and definitely inspire me to push when it gets hard and uncomfortable.  I will carry this experience with me in a few weeks when I go for my 13.1 goal.

Anyone who PR's a half deserves a little post race treat.  So we had one....

Mimosa and Diet Coke
More of Susan's Austin running friends
I was gone from home for one day and it was jam packed with wonderful memories.  As always I wish Susan and I lived closer to one another.  Since we don't I am glad for texting.  It is great for our long distance friendship!  I am thinking Susan that a new marathon PR is next.  What do you think....fall 2015???

1 comment:

  1. Congrats on the great finish time to both of you! You did a great job encouraging your friend to a half marathon PR!