2016 KC 13.1 Race Recap

Last weekend, I ran the KC Half Marathon for the third year in a row (see my 2014 recap here and my 2015 recap here).  As in previous years, I went downtown for packet pickup.  Chris and I checked out the expo for a bit, got our packets, and headed home for a spaghetti dinner.  After setting out my flat runner, it was early(ish) to bed.

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It was much warmer this year, compared to last year’s frigid temps.  It was warm enough for a tank top; I wish it would have been a bit chillier, it kind of felt more like late spring than early fall.  I went to the race with Chris and Amy, and after using the bathrooms and checking our bags, we made our way into the corrals.  The race started right on time, with fireworks going off at the start!

I started off and stuck to my paces, slower than previous halves, as I was trying to run the whole half marathon without walking.  The course was pretty familiar to me, having done it twice before. I made it through Hospital Hill, Liberty Hill, and Trinity Hill with no problems.  I was enjoying the race signs, listening to snippets of conversations as I passed people and as they passed me, listening to my music, and enjoying the course.

I knew by about mile 5 that this was not my race.  Since the start of the race, I’d not had any pep in my calves; my hips had been aching, my calves felt like rocks, and I just felt sluggish, overall.  I continued to watch my paces, trying to focus on something other than how my legs felt.  By the time I got to the Plaza, about halfway, I was feeling chilled, and had goosebumps on my arms.  I had the beginnings of dizziness, and at about mile 7, I stopped to walk.

My number 1 goal for this half marathon was to run it all without walking.  I felt so defeated, mentally.  I have had so many great training runs preparing for this half marathon, and I felt really confident that I could finally reach this goal.  My secondary goal was to PR, and my third goal was to finish the half.  When I started walking, I knew my #1 and #2 goals were out the window.  I honestly didn’t even really want to finish, I was just defeated.

I spent the last 6 miles walking and running, with more walking than running.  My back and feet began aching, because of all the walking. I continued my walk/run/walk/run until I was about a half mile from the finish, and ran it in.  I finished, and felt happy that I had finished, but frustrated and upset and disappointed in myself at my performance.  I got my medal, water, and heat sheet, and made my way to find Amy and Chris.

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Let’s just talk about Chris for a sec.  He finished his first half marathon, and killed it! He beat all of his goals, and felt awesome the whole time.  I am so proud of him, for training and achieving this, for pushing me to run longer, for being there for me after my bad race, and for signing up for another half, so we can keep running together.  He did so great, I can’t say enough.

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Overall, I’m happy I did the race, and I’m happy I finished.  I’ve reflected a lot this week about this half marathon, and the 10 previous halves.  I’m proud of myself every time for finishing a half marathon, because it is no small feat.  I know I didn’t have the day I trained for, but I know that day will come for me.  I’m going to keep running, to keep training, and keep making my mind stronger, because I know it is my mind that gives up far before my body, and I need to learn to be stronger than my  mind thinks I am.

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I love the KC Half, it’s one of my very favorite KC races.  I hope to continue to keep doing this race every fall.  Amy, Chris, and I made our way back home after the race, and now my medal is proudly hanging with my other half marathon medals.

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I have one more half marathon to run this year, the Longview Half Marathon, in 3 weeks. I’m really excited that Mom is coming down for Longview, it will be great to experience Longview with her – neither of us have ran this race before.  Longview Lake, here we come!

Dear Fall Running…

Dear Fall Running,

I love you.  I love the cool, crisp air, after a hot and steamy summer.  I love the leaves falling as I run, and crunching underfoot.  I love the smells of fall.  I love the feel of fall.  My lungs love running and being able to breathe.  My skin loves the cool breeze.  I love the colors of the leaves changing.  I love seeing the squirrels gathering nuts for the winter.

I simply love every single thing about fall running.  I have had such a great week of running, and it’s only half done!  I had a great long run last weekend, absolutely gorgeous run in the fall rain, followed by 5 miles each on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday.  Each of those runs felt so amazing, like I could have kept going for twice as long.  I didn’t want the runs to end.  Compared to how difficult some of my runs felt in the heat of the summer, the runs this week were heaven.

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Running in the fall is the dessert of running.  I’m feeling rejuvenated and refreshed and ready for my two fall half marathons.  I’m ready to enjoy the best season for running.  The KC Half is 2 and a half weeks away, and I feel more ready and confident for this half marathon than I have for my previous 10 halves.  Then, 4 weeks later is the Longview Half.  I’m excited for these races, to treat them like the desserts of running, to thoroughly enjoy every mile of them, just as I’ve enjoyed every mile of these first fall runs.

I’m excited for fall running; I’m excited it’s finally here!  What is your favorite season for running?

Monday Mentionings: September 26

Monday again, and FALL HAS ARRIVED! The weather was so nice and cool yesterday, and should be feeling like fall all week long!  Somehow, I only took a few pictures last week…

Chris and Jazzy have been bonding; Jasper has even cuddled up on his chest a few times.  Adorable.

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About the only other pictures I have to share are from the weekend.  Saturday morning I ran the KC Zoo Run 4 mile race and got to run in the zoo, which was a lot of fun! Unfortunately, I’ve been having bouts of hives over the last couple weeks, and also unfortunately, I woke up covered on Saturday morning.  It was pretty warm at the race, and I ended up having my slowest 4 mile race time, but it was still a ton of fun running through the zoo, seeing the animals (the monkeys were watching us!), and being able to navigate the fun little zoo paths.  I met up with some work friends before the race; thanks RTS for having fun events and races for us to do!

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Sunday morning, it was thunderstorming and raining, so Chris and I postponed our long run until a bit later in the morning.  It was still raining and drizzling, but it was such a pretty and great run.  We finished up with 9 miles on the day, and all of it was in the beautiful rain and cool fall temps.

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Looking to this week, I hope to get some good miles in, and Chris and I are going to Hays for the weekend, which is going to be tons of fun! Small Town Western Kansas Hays America, get ready for a Michigander!

Less than 3 weeks until the KC Half Marathon!

Have a great week!