For the record, I used to dislike runners. They really annoyed me, especially the female ones. I would see them running on the road, and I'd think to myself: "just look at her. Running. There is no way she is enjoying that." I never believed any of my friends when the told me that they "loved running". Nobody loves running. Running is stupid. Running is tiring. People just say they like it but no one actually does.
But, lo and behold, about 8 months ago I started running because my shoulder was hurting too much for me to do any other type of workout, and I actually enjoyed it. For the first time ever. Who knew? After I ran the 10k in September, I decided I wanted to challenge myself a little bit further. I really have nothing to do at home, and I have a ton of free time on my hands, so I figured, why not? (I'm kidding about the nothing to do and the free time. Finding the time to run was incredibly challenging, but Tony was incredibly supportive and helpful and the whole thing, and I managed to get in pretty much all of the mileage that I was supposed to.)
So the day of the race, it was colder than it had been all year. Seriously, it was ridiculously cold. It took me three miles for me to actually feel my toes again. Which was actually kind of nice, because after that I only had 10 miles left... and 10 miles is just twice as much as 5, which is really just 2 miles more than 3.... So basically I was almost done. Yeah, not true.
Really, though, I was fine until about mile 8. After 8, I was like, yeah, it's been fun... but I could really just stop now. Miles 8-11 were definitely the worst. I can say that one of the best things about running in an actual race, though, is all the people who are there encouraging you. There were so many people on the side of the road cheering everyone on, and that is very helpful. Also, the gatorade and orange slices every 2 miles is great too.
So I finished the race in 2:07:29, which puts me at around a 9:40 minute mile... This was definitely better than I had hoped for. My goal was to be at a 10:00, so to get under that was awesome. I did make two huge mistakes. The first one is that my shoes were way way too old. I'm pretty sure that's why my knees and ankles hurt so much at the end. I should have bought new shoes months ago, but I never really thought about it until it was too late to break any new ones in.
My second mistake was that I started off a little bit too fast. By mile 11 I pretty much had nothing left. I got passed by soooooooo many people the last two miles. Tony took some wonderful pictures that show this older lady in red passing me at the last minute:
This is us at the finish line. They gave me this silver tinfoil cape that I assumed was my superman cape, but was apparently a thermal blanket thingy to keep us warm. Like I said... it was freezing. I actually kept my gloves on the whole race, which is just crazy.
Anywho, the race is over, and I'm glad I did it.