Okay, this isn't writerly-related AT ALL, but who cares?
I'M A HALF MARATHONER!!
The run was Sunday. We woke up at 4:45 am and stumbled down to the eating area of the hotel. Thankfully, they had warm water for oatmeal or toasters for bagels, so I was able to get some food. I didn't sleep well the night before. The wind gusts coming off the lake were so strong that the thwapthwapthwap of the flag pole outside our room kept met up all night.
The bus picked us up at 6am and we stood around for an hour, bracing ourselves against the 25-30 mph sustained winds. The race began at 7am and about 8 minutes later I crossed the timing mat and was on my way.
I'll spare you all the mile-by-mile recap. The course was beautiful. There were enough turns that when I was starting to get sick of going straight, I looked up and saw the pack turn down another street.
The spectators were AMAZING. I have never seen so many people out to cheer on runners. For that reason alone, I will gladly run this race again next year. Some of my favorite signs?
"The Kenyans are right ahead of you!"
"Way to go, Complete Stranger!"
"Wind? What wind?"
"There's the guy who stole your wallet!" (complete with arrow pointing ahead)
Aside from the wind, the weather was great. My playlist was awesome, and the miles flew by. The wind blew down the mile markers along the road, so after mile 4, I had no idea where I was on the course. I tried to count the water stops since they were every 1.5 miles, but I quickly lost count. Not knowing my location helped relieve the tension around my timing.
Finally, I crossed one of the split timer mats and yelled out to a race official, "What mile is this?" When he said 10 and I saw that I was under 2 hrs on my watch, I was THRILLED. It was just the motivation I needed. I knew it was just a 5K from there.
My official time was 2:37:22, smack dab in the middle of where I wanted to end.
We showered then went out for lunch where we ate like a bunch of pigs. It was delicious. :) Then it was nap time, followed by lounging around watching TV, and we capped off the night with some pizza and drinks and a soak in the hot tub.
I drove back on Monday and when I got home, I had an email from the race organizers. It turns out the course was 800 feet TOO LONG! Ha! They adjusted everyone's time and my new official time is now 2:35:35. Awesome, I shaved off 2 minutes over night!
Here's the official "finishers" photo. Pay no attention to the dried sweat and tears that you probably can't see, or the sexy wind-blown hair...