Sometimes, on race morning, you’re just not feeling it. I have looked forward to this weekend’s half mary for a while, but as the weekend drew nearer and my obsessive weather checking didn’t change the forecast, I felt it less and less. Seaside School half marathon is a great race – well run, mostly flat(ish), great schwag, and it’s at the beach. What’s not to love?
If you’re a regular follower of my blog, you know I’m not a cold weather runner. I like warm temps, sunny skies, balmy breezes. That’s why I love the beach, for pete’s sake. My sister lives in Missouri and sent me an e-mail this morning that said they have 10-12 inches of snow on the ground. Yikes!
So, I feel a little guilty about complaining about 37 degrees at the beach. But, still. I. Like. Warm. Weather. Period. I don’t typically complain in the summer, although the last couple of summers have been rather painful by mid August or so. I’m more than ready for spring. I decided after today’s race that if I get up on race morning and the temps are below 40, I’m going back to bed. We’ll see if I follow through on that.
Anyway, today’s race was fine, if nothing spectacular. The sun was out and the wind had died down somewhat from yesterday, so I was comfortable after I started running. Kaitlyn was running the 5k, and she brought her “A” game, even though her head was full of sinus mess and had been all week. She still PR’d by about 15 seconds, so she was satisfied with that. Gary was our race photographer and had his work cut out for him, as my race started at 7 am and Kaitlyn’s at 7:30. He planned to bike along the bike path so that he could take pics and pick up my discarded clothing as I warmed up.
We queued up at the start in a chilly mass of humanity, and slowly herded toward the start mat after the gun went off. I was proud of myself because I didn’t start too fast, as I usually do; but found a good, steady pace that stayed with me for the entire first half of the race. I dashed to the beach access bathroom at the turnaround, as the port-a-potty line was really long, and let’s face it, I’d rather go to a permanent potty. I was back to the race before most of the port-a- let line had even moved and continued on my way.
I’m not sure if this is a common phenomena, but as the race approached this past week, every old injury I’ve ever had flared up. My right ITB twinged and my right knee had flashbacks of the pain it suffered during this race last year. My left ankle (on which I had surgery 13 years ago!) decided that it hurt, too, several times to the point of limping. In addition to the old injuries, a host of new phantom pains appeared, as well. My right side complained all week, and during the race cramped so severely that it nauseated me a couple of times. Probably in reaction to my favoring that side, my right hamstring tightened during the race and pinged constantly during the second half of the race. I tried to ignore all the pain signals and just run. I had to dig really, really deep by mile 10. Not sure if the pain was real or mental, even now. Regardless, I found my rhythm about mile 11 (yes, that late), put my eyes on the prize and just finished.
I have to say, I’m glad this one is done. It was a lot harder than it should have been and will cause me to reflect on the “why’s” of that over the next few days as I begin to prepare for the next challenge. Here are a few of the pics Gary managed to get before, during and after the race.
Of course, the race marks the half way point to my time at the beach. Sigh. Everyone has left this evening, Gary had to go home for a couple days of work and Kait has class tomorrow, so I’m here alone, enjoying the sunset and looking forward to my hour and a half massage tomorrow.
Life is good.