Post Half Marathon Recap and Tips

I DID IT!  I survived my first half Marathon!  Yes, you're probably sick of hearing about it but I am still in awe that I not only attempted 13.1 miles, but that I did it!  I'll give you a little recap and some tips that I learned along the way incase you're wanting to do one too!  I encourage you to go for it!  You will surprise yourself at what your body and mind are capable of doing.

Pre Race Jitters

It's not as bad as it seems!  I can't believe that I even said that!  Once you can run six miles without stopping....what's 7 more?  I mean really though!  I feel that once you get that amount of distance under your belt, the miles come much more easy!  The first couple of miles, my legs always feel heavier, like bricks even.  However once I get past those, I feel much more fluid.

I chose to run The Rock and Roll VA Beach half because it was almost entirely flat!  Can I get an AMEN!?!  This made the run much more enjoyable and I was able to run the first 6 miles without stopping.  I'm not by any means fast, but I know that for me, slow and steady is key.  I knew that Cliff and the girls were going to be at the 6th mile marker (almost halfway) so it gave me something to stay focused on and seeing them cheering for me really boosted my morale!  I gave them all a hug and then continued on.

At this point, I was fine.  Then around mile 7, the pelvis and KNEE pain started!  What?!? My knee?  I'm pretty sure that the pain is correlated to my pelvis pain and I could not believe that it was hurting worse than my pelvis.  After mile 7, I had to start walking a little when it hurt too bad.

Backtrack to mile 3, I randomly met a sweet girl and started chatting as we we running. We ran about the same pace and turned out that she too was a military spouse, a mom, and was running her first half marathon with an injury!  What?!?  What are the odds that we would have so many similarities?  It was like God knew that we needed each other.  I recommend a running buddy or buddies for the next race.  My new friend made the miles fly by.  We lost each other when I stopped to see Cliff and the kids but right before mile 11, we miraculously found each other again.

We were both hurting pretty good at this point but we both encouraged each other and ended up running the last 2 miles straight!  Again, it was like God knew that we needed the encouragement from each other to finish that race!

I only listened to Lil Jon  😏 a few times during the race to keep me motivated.  I enjoyed hearing the crowd cheer, the bands along the way, and just living in the moment.

What I did learn....

There were plenty of water stations but I was grateful to have my own water in my Camelback for whenever I needed it.

I brought my own fuel, Stingers , but they passed out gel fuel around mile 4 and mile 9 so I ate about half of each gel each time.  I would bring your own just in case.

Wear comfortable clothing that you have run in before!  I am picky about how clothing fits me so I chose to wear my favorite Under Armour running shorts, my ugly running shoes, my most comfortable sports bra, and a loose fitting tank.  I also wore a hat and no sunglasses because I had left them as home.

I was pouring water on myself every now and then because it was HOT.  What I don't recommend is dumping it on your shorts.  I stupidly did.  Then my shorts just clung to me, so annoying.  I kept trying to wring them out while I was running.  Sooooo annoying!

If you can, have a cheering crowd/ friend/ family/ spouse.  Having my biggest supporters there really kept me focused and motivated.

It was too hot for the kids so we left right after the race but if we had stayed, I had packed in my drop bag sandals, Aleve for pain, and a dry shirt.

STRETCH before and AFTERWARDS.  I did not.  BIG MISTAKE!  I was so focused on getting the kids in the air conditioned car that I completely forgot to stretch after.  I was extremely tight after and probably another reason that I was in so much pain the next day.

If you want the professional photographers to take your picture, be sure that your race number is visible!

Just finished!

My knee was killing me at this point!

All finished! Both girls were over it at this point!


Image result for pain is temporary pride is forever pretty quote


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