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!
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 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.
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?