Sunday, January 26, 2014

Vancouver Lake Half Marathon Race Recap

Emily wanted me to wake her up at 6:30 this morning.  She wanted to have a shower and enough time to eat and get ready for the race, and our hotel room stay afterward.  I couldn't sleep much past 5 O'clock.  I had a couple of strange dreams, but other than that I slept well.  I asked Emily how she slept and she said "good".

By 8:00 am everyone in the house was awake, Emily and I were packed and ready to go.  I was worried about getting a decent parking spot at the lake, but we arrived there at 8:40 and got a really close spot.  The last thing we wanted to do after running 13.1 miles, was walk a mile to the van.  We got out of the car and looked for a restroom.  The bathrooms were closed, so we hiked over to the port-o-pottys.  Emily tried to use it, but said "I guess I don't have to go".  I was a little worried in my mind, but she made an honest effort, so I figured when it came to urgency then she would be able to use it.

We asked a couple of nice ladies to take some photos of us before the race.  I have learned in my first three half's that I should put my race bib somewhere other than my shirt.  This time I put it on my leg.  I was worried about Emily's leg being too small, but I was able to secure it to her leg too.  That is where it will go for every race from now on!  It did not get in the way at all!

It was about 30 degrees, so once the excitement of getting there wore off, and we were done trekking from the bathrooms back to the shelter we decided to go in the warm van wait for the last 10 minutes.

We headed up the hill to the start line at 9:50.  I could not get over how kind, welcoming, and personable the other racers were.  If someone was talking or saying something funny, it was okay to look over and laugh, or even chime in a little bit.  No one gave a look at me like I dropped to the earth straight from Mars.  Maybe that is another reason I love running so much.  It is the friendliest sport out there in my opinion. (I could be kind of partial).

As we stood in line, we called my husband and said our final words before the race.  Emily was very excited and, I think, for the first time, a little nervous.  All of the race participants counted down together.  There was no pushing or shoving, no one was freaking out to get going.  With only 475 racers, the crowd thinned out pretty quickly.

Miles 1 to 3 were pretty simple.  Emily was huffing along and then shortly after two miles she was asking if we had gotten to one mile yet.  I told her yes, and then finally let out that we had gotten just past two.  So we walked.  What I love is that when Emily takes a walk break, it is literally no more than 30 seconds.  There were port-a-potty's and a coat check at mile 3.  We shed our hats, gloves, and jackets.  We also decided to take a potty break.  We were emptied and ready for the next 10.1 miles.

Miles 3,4,and 5 were pretty similar, walking for a short bit at every mile.  Along the way people were saying good job, and giving Emily smiles and shouts of praise.  She got so much attention.   At mile 4 we had some candy, and walked for a little longer than 30 seconds.

Miles 5, 6, and 7 were superstar miles.  We stayed under 11 minute miles, and did not stop for breaks.  In fact right before 8, Emily mentioned to me how she hadn't stopped since mile 5.  At mile 8 she was ready to walk for a bit.  A few times along the course she said that she was having fun…so was I.

Miles 8 and 9
We were on our way out to the last turn around and these went pretty smooth as well.  Around mile 9 Emily was expressing how she was tired.  I told her that I was tired too, and that she should be tired.

Mile 10
This was a big mile for us because she told me at the beginning that she was going to run 10, and then 3.1 more.  Also I pointed out to her just after she passed the marker, that this was farther than she had ever run before!  We were getting excited, but very sore and tired.

Mile 11
Oh man, I thought mile 12 was NEVER going to come.  I began to run too fast I think.  Emily said "can we walk at 12?"  I told her "Of course."  Shortly after she asked me that, she wanted to stop.  That was fine for me!  She must have got scared that she wasn't going to be able to finish because she was so very sore and tired.  She said it was harder than she'd imagined.  So we pulled over to the side and stood for a minute.  All the patience I had struggled with during training made this easy.  I was not in a hurry, I was not even whining in my head about how I didn't want to be stopped.  In fact, what was going through my head was that my baby just ran 12 miles!  I told her if we have to walk the last mile point1, then that's what we would do!

Miles 12, and 13.1
"I am ready to walk", so we walked then began to run slowly.  We got a little farther and Emily could see that we were very close.  She looked at me and said "Let's do this mom!"  I said, "What?, run faster?", she said "Yep, but not super fast."  We ran and just before the finish line, there was her daddy calling out to her.  It was such a sweet moment.  We ran it in holding hands, and at the very last minute raising our hands up in the air.

This is the grand prize!  

1 comment:

  1. You inspire me Emily!!!

    Thinking about 13.1 kicks my butt. You did it!!!