Just a 35 Minute PR, No Big Deal

Yesterday was one of the BEST running days of my life!

Last year the Fort Lauderdale half marathon was my very first half and I really struggled through it. This year I ran a 35 minute course PR and a 24 minute half marathon PR!

Screen Shot 2014-11-09 at 5.24.18 PM

Fort Lauderdale 13.1


Up until Friday I thought I might be able to hit 2:59 this weekend, but then Saturday our temps skyrocketed back into the mid-80s and I re-adjusted my expectations to “just have fun and see what happens.”

On race morning it was only 72 degrees but 88% humidity! The humidity + sun were a nightmare at first, but then the sun went away and it rained out which was kind of nice. Although, my socks got soaked and I ended up with some XL blisters …but WHO CARES BECAUSE I GOT A MAJOR PR!


Miles 1 – 4: Wow, it’s really humid, where are all the aid stations? I thought there were supposed to be 11 but so far we’ve only had one! I’m thirsty! My fingers are already swelling up! (I hate when races don’t have enough aid stations!) I wonder if I’ll be able to keep this pace up?

Mile 5 – 8: Yay, we’re almost to the beach! Hey, there’s the road that takes me to my house. Maybe I should run home and get a bottle of water? Nah, that would be ridiculous!

Miles 9 – 12: Last year at this time I was wishing that a car would come out of no where and run me over, this year I’m feeling pretty good! Oh no, I’m going to miss 2:59, but who cares because I’m still going to come in under 3:05 which is pretty awesome!

Mile 13: HALF MARATHON #3 IN THE BOOKS! Oh crap, I think I could have gotten 2:59 if I pushed the last half mile. Oh well, LOOK AT THAT HUGE PR!!!!!

I think this was literally the first time I have ever crossed the finish line of a race and felt truly happy. Normally I’m either exhausted or upset about my time, but yesterday I was ecstatic!

I'm not missing an arm, I think I had my hand on my hip and I guess it just isn't visible.

I’m not missing an arm, I think I had my hand on my hip and I guess it just isn’t visible.

I honestly didn’t realize how close I was to getting 2:59.

At one point I had to stop in the middle of the race because a draw bridge was up (I heard some people got stopped at the train tracks, too)! I have NO IDEA why they closed down the streets but not the waterways! I had paused my Garmin for that but definitely wasted about maybe 2 mins there. I hope they adjust the official times for those incidents whenever they post the results.

Towards the end of the race I wasn’t looking at my Garmin and when I passed the mile 12 marker/time sign I thought I was definitely going to miss 2:59 so I didn’t even try to speed up. Lesson learned: always speed up at the end if you can.

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Oh well, I can’t even be mad about missing my goal time by less than a minute because I’m so happy with my PR! I still have plenty of chances to get it over the next couple of months since this was only race #1 of the Florida Storm Series!

Plus, have I mentioned yet that I got a 35 minute course PR and a 24 minute overall half marathon PR?!!! OMG!

Yesterday really felt like a celebration of my training for the past year. It made all of those summer runs in the 100 degree heat feel SO WORTH IT!

My house ended up being about 2 miles from the starting line and 2 miles from the finishing line, so I walked both ways as my warm up/cool down for a total of 17 miles yesterday. That was by far the most I’ve done in one day since the Portland Marathon which means I sat all afternoon with my legs up on the couch (and with some little dude laying in my lap).


What was it like not tapering for the half? Not really a big deal. Maybe if I had tapered I would have easily shaved off those 44 seconds, but I’m kind of glad I didn’t taper. I was really relaxed going into this race and mostly was able to view it as just another long run since I treated it like one.

I think going into the race relaxed was key for me. I mean, I’m not sure if I mentioned it but I got a 35 minute course PR and a 24 minute overall half marathon PR!!! 

Now I’m really looking forward to the Palm Beaches Half next month! I’m hoping the weather will be much nicer and I can really focus on shaving off those 44 seconds.

OH and guess what?! I made a new friend on the course who invited me to run the Florida Keys 100-Mile Relay with her running group in May! I’m really excited to get in touch with her and learn more! This may be the only way I’ll ever be able to say I ran in a 100-mile race ; ).

What is your favorite distance to race and why? 



  1. November 10, 2014 / 7:14 am

    woo hoo!!!! that is spectacular! I knew you would blow your PR out of the (Florida) water haha 🙂 stopping the race b/c of a drawbridge is definitely a first – what a memorable part of the race! 88% humidity…..so impressed with you!

    • November 10, 2014 / 5:19 pm

      Thank you! 🙂 The humidity was such a killer at first, I’m pretty glad the sky opened up and it started raining! 88% humidity is no joke for a race day!

  2. November 10, 2014 / 7:15 am

    Holy crap girl, way to do it!!!!!! This is such a prime example of how far you’ve come. Talk about a ginormous PR and confidence booster!!!! Congrats on an awesome race, and I’m sooooo glad you finished HAPPY!!!! (True story: I cried after my last half PR.)

    The Key West relay would be fun! If I ever do another Ragnar, I know who to ask 😉

    • November 10, 2014 / 5:21 pm

      I haven’t stopped smiling about it yet!

      I really thought that if I finished strong I would cry happy tears, but I guess I’m saving the tears for when I finally get 2:59!

  3. Molly
    November 10, 2014 / 7:53 am

    Congratulations!! What a huge improvement in a year! I’m sure this next year will hold many great things too! I’m still super jealous of your warm weather. The highest “high” on my seven day forecast is a whopping 28 degrees. 🙁

    • November 10, 2014 / 5:22 pm

      Thank you so much! I’m excited to train hard and keep knocking out PRs over the course of this next year!

      28 degrees?! OUCH! I can’t even imagine that! I do wish it was a little bit cold here though, just a little 😉

  4. November 10, 2014 / 8:15 am

    OMG CONGRATS, YOU’RE AMAZING! So so happy for you!!!! I think that may be a new PR gap record?!?! Guinness world book of records material??

    • November 10, 2014 / 5:23 pm

      Hahahah thank you!!!!! I am feeling really good about life right now! Still riding the high from yesterday 🙂

  5. November 10, 2014 / 8:16 am

    Congratulations! I’m so excited for you, and just think what cooler weather might bring in the future. A huge half marathon AND course PR is amazing! You must be floating in air 🙂

    • November 10, 2014 / 5:24 pm

      I AM! I haven’t stopped floating since I crossed the finish line yesterday 😀

      I really hope we have a nice day next month because while I love this PR but I’m ready to go for another one!

  6. November 10, 2014 / 8:29 am

    Congratulations! That is so amazing and you will be breaking 3 hours before you know it!

  7. November 10, 2014 / 10:45 am

    Congratulations!! That humidity is killer, I’m impressed you finished feeling so great! One of the best parts of running is realizing how much you’ve improved over the months.

    • November 10, 2014 / 5:26 pm

      Thank you!! It feels good to see the hard work pay off from all of those tough summer runs when I just wanted to stay in my air conditioned house!

  8. November 10, 2014 / 11:14 am

    WooHoo!! Congratulations on a huge PR (2 actually!!)!! So exciting! I have no doubt that when you are actually planning to race and taper for a half you will easily get 2:45!!

    • November 10, 2014 / 5:28 pm

      Thank you, Kim!!! I hope I can get 2:45 sometime soon, but first I have to get 2:59 next month in Palm Beaches 😉 Not getting 2:59 this time is a HUGE motivator to work hard over the next three weeks in preparation for PB!

  9. November 10, 2014 / 11:40 am

    Great job, Kristina! I knew you would do it!. Next time–2:59! That is an incredible PR!
    A bridge going up in the middle of a race–that is a new one!
    You are going to love the 100 mile relay! So fun. When is it?

    • November 10, 2014 / 5:30 pm

      The 100-mile relay is in May! I don’t think they could have picked a hotter part of the year, but since it’s a relay hopefully the segments won’t be too long because the sun will be brutal I am sure!

      I have never been more motivated to get 2:59!

  10. November 10, 2014 / 12:21 pm

    Holy PR that is awesome. You will be so confident at your next race now that you know sub 3 is so obtainable. Great job!

    • November 10, 2014 / 5:31 pm

      Thank you!! This race definitely gave me confidence, especially knowing that I still felt strong at the end. That gives me the confidence to push a little harder during the earlier miles to ensure 2:59 happens next time!

      Congrats to you too on a flippin incredible trail 1/2!!

  11. November 10, 2014 / 1:25 pm

    This is awesome, Kristina! I am so proud of you!!!! 🙂 What a great start to the remainder of your races. I am curious to see what they do about your official times due to the bridge incident! You know one marathon I ran, they had to redirect the course due to a fire and it added like a quarter of a mile to the course. They had to adjust all of our times! This was before I had a Garmin so I remember thinking Mile 22 was soooooo freaking long. And it really was!

    • November 10, 2014 / 5:33 pm

      Wellllll they just posted the official times along with adjusted times and apparently instead of reducing my finishing time due to the stop they decided to ADD one one extra second! LOL

      I am going to email them to see if they can change that, haha!

  12. November 10, 2014 / 2:38 pm

    WOOOOO! Look at you at 3 hours 🙂 Awesome!!!! You will get those few seconds on the next one. You are so selfless, you logged 17 miles just so Cecil could have plenty of lap time the next day lol How cool the race was so close to home. I’ve only had one event that close and it was my unofficial 5K (they shorted the course) That is still really high humidity!

    • November 10, 2014 / 5:39 pm

      Thank you for noticing how selfless I was. I don’t think Cecil really appreciated the sacrifice I made on his behalf 😉

      One of the best things about Fort lauderdale races is that they almost all start within a 2 mile radius of my house since everyone wants to run along the beach!

  13. November 10, 2014 / 2:39 pm

    Congratulations!!!!!!! That is super awesome!!! Not realizing how close you are to breaking your goal is something I think we all underestimate ourselves!! You didn’t taper at all and you rocked it so that in itself is something to be proud of!!
    You will def go sub 3+ next race!!!

    • November 10, 2014 / 5:40 pm

      Thank you, Staci! For sure, I am super motivated to come in under 3 next time and I won’t let anything stop me … unless it’s like 90 degrees or something! 😉

  14. November 10, 2014 / 3:32 pm

    Dang! Way to go, congratulations!

  15. November 10, 2014 / 6:26 pm

    Um I would LOVE a 35 minute PR. HOLY. Good job girl. I knew you were gonna rock it and you definitely did. <3!!!!!!

  16. November 10, 2014 / 7:53 pm

    YEEEEESSSSSS!!!! So freaking excited for you, Kristina. I was thinking about you on and off yesterday and was hoping to see the letters PR show up in your post. It makes sense, as I’m sure the marathon made you much stronger. Doesn’t it seem like a half marathon is a REALLY nice distance after doing a marathon. I did one immediately after a marathon once and thought, that’s it!?

    I can’t believe how hot it is in Florida. Doesn’t that winter vortex thing stretch down into your territory at all? Bummer it rained, but I’m sure the clouds felt nice. I love that you are still learning things and taking something away from each race you do (run hard near the end). Never stop learning lessons, right? It’s the only way we can improve and get better. Well done, woman!!!

    • November 10, 2014 / 10:44 pm

      Thank you!!! After the marathon I really needed a great race like this to boost my confidence back up.I really feel like the marathon was a huge contributor to my success this past weekend. Knowing I could push through those last miles in the marathon really makes me feel like I can do anything!

      Yes, I totally know what you mean about the distance… 13.1 miles may be the most perfect racing distance ever decided upon!

      We had a some of the polar vortex for about 4 days a week ago and temps dropped to the 50s-60s. We’re still in the low 70s/upper 60s at night, but during the day we’re mostly back in the 80s.

  17. November 10, 2014 / 8:03 pm

    Awesome!!!!!!! Congratulations! That is huge!!! Isn’t it awesome to see all your hard work pay off?! Woohoo!!!!

    • November 10, 2014 / 10:34 pm

      Thank you!! 🙂

      During the summer when the temps reached triple digits there were plenty of days I wondered why I was killing myself … but now I know 🙂 TOTALLY WORTH IT!

  18. November 10, 2014 / 8:15 pm

    CONGRATS! SO happy for you. I see a sub-3 coming very soon….

    • November 10, 2014 / 10:39 pm

      I see it too!!!! I’m going to make sure to get in lots of quality runs over the next three weeks in preparation! 🙂

  19. November 10, 2014 / 9:42 pm

    Congratulations! That is so cool! I can’t believe you were able to get a massive PR like that with 88% humidity. Just think what you could do with better weather!

    • November 10, 2014 / 10:40 pm

      I really hope we have nice cool weather next month!

      I heard from another runner this weekend that last year the Palm Beaches Half was SUPER HOT and a lot of people dropped from dehydration issues, so that made me a little nervous… but maybe this year we’ll have the opposite and it will be cold!

  20. November 11, 2014 / 1:54 am

    Congratulations!!!!! This is awesome news!!! So happy for you! You are amazing!! Smashed your pb/pr!!! Now you should have a well deserved rest. 🙂 🙂 🙂

  21. November 11, 2014 / 3:31 pm

    CONGRATS, KRISTINA! This is so awesome, I am so happy for you omg 😀 An AMAZING PR! *huge applause for you* 😀

  22. November 11, 2014 / 5:37 pm

    Woot! Way to go! Love that you have TWO PR’s to boast about! When’s the next race….?

    • November 12, 2014 / 5:43 pm

      Thank you!! I am doing the Palm Beaches half next month! Just about three weeks to go 😉

  23. November 11, 2014 / 8:51 pm

    CONGRATULATIONS!!!! I’m happy that you got your PRs! It was a awesome race and I really enjoyed the course (this was my first time running FLL). Great job!

    • November 12, 2014 / 5:43 pm

      Thank you!!!! Congrats to you, too!!! I kind of thought you might surprise yourself and blow this race out of the water. I could see that you were itching to go much faster than your weekend running group was tending to go!