It’s official. I survived my first half marathon. Not only did I survive it, but I think it went really well!
I honestly couldn’t be more pleased with how the race went. I finished the half marathon in 2 hours and 5 minutes. My average pace was 9:35. That is about 45 seconds faster than my average long run pace. I guess that adrenaline really kicked in! The great feel and vibe of the race really helped. There were so many people cheering the runners on. There were people in costumes, DJs,and even designated “cheer zones.” It was also really nice to see historic Philadelphia up close and personal. Way better than finding a parking spot in the city!
The fun started at 5:00 am when we showed up for the security check. We definitely didn’t need to be there that early, but better safe than sorry. Although, I could have done without getting up at 3:45 am the morning I was going to run 13.1 miles…Oh well, adrenaline and anticipation kept me going!
There were definitely moments during the race when I was not loving it. The giant hill in the middle of the race didn’t make me too happy, but I was determined not to walk. I just kept telling myself there was a Clif shot and Gatorade just around the corner. Nothing had ever tasted so good.
I also had the unique experience of finishing the half marathon right as the first man was finishing the marathon. I could hear the crowd roaring and just pretended it was all for me. That gave me the final boost to make it across the finish line. The great thing after I finished was that I had all these wonderful text messages from my family and friends. They had signed up for text alerts and knew the exact moment I finished.
As I finished that race, slightly in a state of fog, I could barely believe that I had finished, let alone that I had run faster than I ever had. Then, I met up with my fellow running club members and grabbed some food and beers at a nearby Irish pub. As I sat there with my new running buddies, I took a moment to soak it all in. I didn’t even know these people six months ago. We had a bond now. We had completed our first half marathon together. We started talking about our goals, and the next thing I knew, we were in cahoots to run the full marathon next year. Only time can tell, but a year ago I never imagined that I would finish my first half marathon, be living in a new state, sharing a beer with my new friends. You never know what a year can bring.