Sunday, May 13, 2012

The half marathon that wasn't

This is not my list of excuses or how I quit a race, but instead how my plans changed and I finished the race but with a new plan and injury free. The morning started out great, leg was feeling good and I was ready to go. I took an easy warm up run to the car and back, had to use the bathrooms and the port a potty line was awful so I took advantage of having a potty chair with. I hid in the back of the SUV. Yes, I peed on a potty chair and it was so convenient to have why not take advantage of it!

The race lined up and I made sure to be in front of the 1:40 pacer knowing the first few miles of the course were easiest and I wanted to bank some time. I was on pace the first 2-3 miles but it was tough, the leg injury has made me back off both speedwork and hills for the past 2 months making a race like this nearly impossible. I kept pushing but suffering at the same time and telling myself "just stay in front of the 1:40 pacer"

I passed Mile 5 and saw O and my mom cheering me on, slightly beyond this it happened, I was passed by 1:40! Ugh, I pushed to get ahead but quickly came to a decision that this was not worth it, I was going to push to the point of injury and not only disappoint myself with how I raced but possibly prevent myself from running the marathon in a couple weeks. I also knew that just backing down wasn't enough, I am too competitive and would still try pushing myself. This is when I made the decision to kind of quit. I turned around and ran back to where O was cheering and waited for Matt. We have yet to run anything more then a 5K together so why not do it today. I think my presence shocked (and at first worried) him. He stopped and started talking, but we then took off and I now had the goal to help him get his goal of a sub 2.

Matt and I ran together and I was feeling great, the weather was perfect and I was, for the first time, running a half marathon with my husband. We got the Mile 13 with a minute to go for him to make his time. He took off along the track to push it to the end, finishing 2:00:11 (1:59:51 by his watch which paused during his stop). A great finish for an early season race and although not a PR it was a best for him on this race by 10 minutes. I held back and waited for an opening in the traffic and grabbed O who has been wanting to run a race. We crossed the finish line together. 14.5 miles in 2:00:34 and I felt great!
Her grin made then entire race worth my decision!

A spectator near my mom made a comment to her about how it was a bad example and wrong of me to just quit because I wasn't going to win. Maybe that is true, but I don't think of it that way. I know myself and yes I am competitive, but more important I know what needs to be done to convince myself that I can stop and take it easy. In this case I needed to do this to have the best long term outcome. This is only one race. No I did not run what I wanted, but I did what was best for me and I will never regret it.
Family Finish!

6 comments:

  1. I didn't realize your husband was running today, too! That's great you could run together-- you can go for that half time another day... glad you enjoyed yourself. And congrats!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. He has run this half since it started 5 years ago, but we rarely run together. It was a great day and I had fun :)

      Delete
  2. the spectator who made that comment violated my personal golden rule: when it comes to parents and pet owners, unless there is egregious neglect or abuse happening, don't judge. just DON'T. it's NONE of their business unless, as i said, something really bad is going on and then it's everybody's business!
    good for you for playing it smart. hopefully you get back on track fir the marathon.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So true! I don't know why pregnancy and parenting seem to make people think they have the right to judge and make comments!

      Delete
  3. Such an idiot! Hate when people make comments like that without knowing what's behind the decision.
    Smart decision!
    And even if someone quits because she is not going to win or get PR, or qualify for something if that's what you are after...I do not see anything bad about that in such a long race as HM or M. I strongly believe that we have only limited number of miles our bodies/legs can handle in our lifetimes, so why waste it? :) Better stop now and save your legs for the next race if you know that today it is just not going to happen.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So true, why push something just to make others happy. It always suprises me how much people express their opinions on situations they are not effected by!

      Delete