So when I signed up for the Rock 'n River Marathon, it was because I liked the crazy idea of running on the streets of downtown under the famous Reno Arch. I didn't want to pay registration fees and go all through the trouble involved with race day to do a short distance such as a 5K (3.1 miles) and even a 10K (6.1) wasn't worth the trouble (these race distances are different for serious runners, however, they compete in it to win and/or break their personal bests for those distances). If I was going to sign up for an event, I at least wanted it to be long enough and drawn out enough for me to enjoy it and wonder 'what was I thinking?!' so I shot for something challenging and picked the half marathon (13.1 miles).
Well those were exactly the words that ran through my head the day before. What if I can't finish? What if I cramp? Can I really run 13.1 miles? May people run for years or at least months before doing a half marathon and I only had been running for four months. In my attempts to be in the condition I needed to be in order to run the longest distance on foot in my life, I over trained and came down with common running injuries like very sore hip abductors and later, sore hip abductors. I started with a minimalist shoe (Saucony Kinvara 2) - great on the treadmill but after a couple months, my feet would get beat up on the road before I finally switched to the Newton Distance U the week before the race and I love it (it was my anniversary gift).
The big day finally came and I had no choice but to toe the start line. I had no real reason to be as nervous as I was. I wasn't racing to win. I didn't have a finish time I had to beat. All I had hoped for was to finish and I was going there to have fun. This half marathon wasn't a test of after all the months of training -- it was a celebration of all the hours I'd invested on the pavement and belt of the treadmill. The work I put in was so I could run miles and miles and enjoy it all instead of suffering. And enjoy it I did!!
My co-worker dropped back to stick to his pace while I ran ahead for the last three miles. I kept my eyes ahead on the road slightly in front of me, plugged in my iPod, and ran. Ran past several folks along the way to the finish line.
In the last tenth of a mile, I gave it everything I had and sprinted across the finish line.
What a blast!! Then I ran back to find my co-worker and ran with him, cheering him on, until he crossed the finish line.
John was so proud of me. I, too, was happy about what I've accomplishment - to reap the rewards of the training efforts I put in for the past several months.
|Havi trying on my finisher's medal for size.|
local bands who were out there to ensure we had a fun and safe race. I already cannot wait to do the half marathon next year. Who knows, maybe I'll shoot for a marathon!
Here are more photos from the race: