Oh yeah. I ran a half marathon almost two weeks ago.
This was my second year to run the Cedars of Lebanon Frostbite Half Marathon. Once again, I planned to use it as a 13.1 mile training run and take it easy... I just didn't know going in how easy I'd end up taking it.
The race is only $6 as part of the Tennessee State Parks runs. Granted, there are no shirts or medals, but for $6 it's nice to have a large group to join even if it is just a training run. It also starts at 11am... a pro because it meant sleeping in, a con because it meant it was like 3:30 in the afternoon before I got home and could move on to other things.
So on Saturday the 12th, my friend Matt and I headed out to Lebanon. I actually ran into a couple of guys that I ran cross country and track with in high school at the start. I'm pretty sure I hadn't seen either of them since they graduated in 2000. Crazy!
As we started out, I knew that my body was going to insist that I keep it slow. There was no way I was going to get crazy and run a really fast time. I watched Matt take off, and I pulled out my iPod and settled into a groove.
This was only a few days after the big snow storm (the one where I couldn't get home, met some strangers and spent the night with friends), and there was still a bit of snow and ice around. It wasn't terrible, but it made things interesting a few times. Running uphill on ice? Not something I've really done much training for. I almost slipped once, but after flailing my arms around a bit I caught my balance.
I had forgotten how hilly the course is! Since Huntsville and Disney were flat, I hadn't really done much running on hills since I ran the Flying Monkey Marathon. In November. Needless to say, my legs were not happy about all the hills.
In fact, I think we only ever went up. I have no idea how, but it never felt like I went downhill.
Very early in the race, I realized that this really would just be a long, slow run for me. I wasn't running fast at all, and I didn't feel like I could go any faster.
I admitted to myself that my body is probably still not at 100% post-Goofy Challenge and just decided I was ok with a slow time. It wasn't really a race for me anyways.
So I finished in 2:11:30. HA.
I was actually pretty sore the next day, but in a good way. But I definitely have got to get myself back into some hill training or else the Country Music Half is going to be tough.
Speaking of which, I just found out that I earned a spot on the pace team. Just like last year, I'll be pacing a group to finish the half in 2:15. I'm super excited!