Sunday, September 9, 2007

Chips-n-Salsa Half-Marathon Finisher!!


1) My incredibly wonderful and loving husband surprised me by training for and signing up for the race without me knowing so that he could be there to support me. I discovered this on Thursday evening and was left speechless. I had absolutely no idea that he planned that or that he was ramping up his run mileage. I think it's one of the most romantic things he's ever done for me. I feel blessed beyond words.

2) Lia & I had exchanged a few blog comments and email suggesting we could run together which I thought would ROCK. I fully intended to follow up with her on Saturday, However, regretfully, I never found time on Saturday because...

3) Saturday was packed full! My teenage son had a full day (8-5) of band activities. After that, there were errands to run including an unsuccessful shoe shopping experience for my daughter (spent 1.5 hrs and no success...grrrr). By the time we finally made it home, we ate dinner and went directly to bed. I was wiped out. Son is at the left back row in this picture.


The race venue is not very far from my house, but we headed out early because they had stressed the importance of early arrival due to the number of people in the event and limited parking. We heeded the warning and left earlier than we might have otherwise. That was a good move. The parking situation seemed to get ugly shortly after we picked up our chips.I wondered if Lia was there and if I would be able to pick her out in the crowd. No luck on my part.

Cindy did manage to find me though. She had told me she would be wearing a red shirt. There was an entire running group clad in red shirts, so she was not going to be easy to find. My yellow hat, on the other hand, was a bit more unique. :)

I also found my friend from work that has been at every triathlon with me. She regularly runs 12 miles on Sundays, so this wasn't much more than a normal Sunday run for her.


It was a bit crowded for the first mile and I forgot to start my Garmin right away. It thinned out soon enough though. The plan was to run a mile, walk a bit, then run to the next mile marker, repeat, and that is what I did from the beginning.

It was an out and back and I wondered when I'd see the lead runners. The answer - mile 4. Man, they were booking it!! Next, I wondered when I'd see my friend from work and Cindy. The answer - somewhere between miles 5 and 6. They both looked great. Go, go, go!

I looked forward to each mile marker and the short walk to get my heart rate back down, catch my breath, and take care of nutrition/hydration. I was thrilled when we got to the turn point. I shouted "WoooHooo! Headin' home!!" I also realized that I was passing some of the walkers. Yessssss!!

Things got interesting at mile 8. I knew it was going to be a struggle from this point forward, and took an extra long walk break. It was mind over matter. I kept moving forward, but every step was begining to hurt...a lot.

My incredibly wonderful and loving husband had been running at my side. I could tell if was a struggle for him to try move this slow. He would turn around and run backwards. He would loop back behind me and then catch back up. I encouraged him to just go on ahead at his own pace to finish the race. We talked about this for most of mile 10. I finally convinced him that I would be fine and to go on ahead. When we hit the marker at mile 11, he took off ahead of me promising to be there for me at the finish.
My Garmin shows that my pace slowed way down after he left. I decided to take walk breaks every half mile at that point.

I wasn't alone for very long though. Before I had gone a half mile, my friend from work came running up the road to bring me in.
Those last few miles were PAINFUL. I hurt everywhere. I knew we were close, but yet still so far. My friend and I chatted to pass the time, and I kept moving forward.

Near the end, I saw my husband coming back up the road to join us. I felt like a rockstar with my own posse. When the finish was in sight, they both encouraged me to 'sprint it in', but my legs weren't having any of that. I finished with a 'strong jog' instead.

Across the line. beeeeeeep. I stopped. Someone gave me water and a medal. I was shaking. I couldn't believe how much pain I was in. I started walking to get out of the way of other finishers and all I could muster was a hobble.


They had apples and breakfast burritos and chips-n-salsa. I hobbled through the line and was afraid to stop moving for fear I wouldn't be able to start again. Hobbled over to the finish results, but they didn't have anything up past 2:00:00 yet, and I didn't want to wait around.Hobbled over to the car which seemed sooooo far away. Getting into the car was an ordeal. My legs just didn't want to cooperate. I practically had to lift my right leg with my arms.

I never declared my time predictions, but I'll share now.

My A goal was to finish between 2:30:00 and 2:45:00. That would require running about 12min miles. I thought that was doable, but would require mental toughness for miles 9-13 since I hadn't worked my long runs up as far as I had hoped.

My B goal was to finish between 2:45:00 and 3:00:00. That would require running about 13min miles. I figured that was realistic even if I ended up walking a lot of the last few miles.

My C goal (okay maybe my over-arching goal) was to finish strong and uninjured.

My finish time was something like 02:38:08. I'm sore, but happy. :)


  1. WOOHOO!!!!!!!!!! Great job!!!!!! Great race report and your time was fantastic! You did it! Congratulations!

  2. Wow!!! That is fabulous! I would say you kicked that Bunnie's Butt!!!

  3. Enjoyed reading your race summary.

    What a thoughtful guy to join you and surprise you.

    When it starts to hurt that bad, then the goals are hard to stick to. But you had great supporters and that means sooooo much.

    Thanks for posting the band pic of your son. Band is very big in our family and we spend a fair amount of time at marching competitions this time of year.
    Couldn't make out the instrument...was that a saxophone? Same here?

    Recover well from your HM and keep up the great running and posting.


    Great race - great report!


    ...are you enjoying some chips 'n' salsa now?

  5. did AWESOME!! And, it was nice meeting you. Chit-chatting before the start helped my pre-race jitters. Congrats on a great first half marathon!

    By the way, if the photo is at Milne, we were also there on Saturday...small world.

  6. Woohoo! Great job! Jeez, that's a great time. You'll ahve to tell me your secret; my best half is somewhere around 3 hours. :-(

    I'm happy for you - especially the part about hubby doing it with you.

  7. Congratulation on meeting your A goal! Awesome hubby was able to join you! WOO HOOO!!! So happy for you :-)

  8. Awwwwhhhhh Lisa your husband is soooo sweet!!!

    CONGRATS!!!! You DID AWESOME!!!! I agree with Mary on this one, I don't think you were chasin the bunnies this time around ;-) Great, great job!!! ;D ;D ;D Definitely a race to be proud of!


  10. Great job, we're proud of you!

  11. Wow, Lisa, that's FANTASTIC!!! CONGRATULATIONS! How exciting! I'd like to do a half-marathon by this time next year!! And what a great husband you have!

  12. Congratulations!!!

  13. Yahoo!!! Great job. How cool your hubby ran too. You should be very proud that you hung in there.

  14. Great job Lisa! That is a great run..

  15. Great Great GREAT!
    You, your husband, your posse.
    This post.
    All GREAT!

  16. Congrats chica! What an awesome job!!! You should be soooo proud of yourself! Perhaps as a treat to yourself a post-race massage is in order???

  17. Congrats! I was thinking of you on Sunday. Cool about your hubby!

  18. WOO HOO!!! You did great! I think I saw you on the course - Good for you for doin' it! It's so sweet your husband did it with you - that tops my list of romantic gestures!

  19. Great race. And cool medal :-)

  20. Congrats on your finish and on your time! It's wonderful to meet those tough goals, isn't it?

  21. How cool of your hubby to surprise you like that? Very nice!

    Good job toughing out that race. Not easy when you know you don't have the training in, but you still did a great job doing what you could.

    Recover well.

  22. Woo hoo! You are faster than you let on! I hope I can be as fast when I do mine at the end of October! Rest a week and then keep it up, and who knows where it might lead you next! And give that wonderful husband of yours a big hug from all the rest of us in blogland for being so supportive! He probably will never know how much it means to have him on your side.

  23. Congratulations! Well done!
    My niece and nephew are both in marching band back in mom sends me video tapes so I can watch them!
    Sounded like a fun day all around!

  24. Yeah!! GOOD FOR YOU, especially when it got so painful. I hope you are recovering quickly!!

  25. AWESOME AWESOME AWESOME!! WAy to go! What a wonderful hubby you have! :)

  26. lisa - such a great race report and i think your husband is one sweet, romantic man!


  27. Great job out there, you reached your "A" goal, you should be really proud of yourself..

    Way to keep moving...


    ps. when a everything hurts, ICE is your bestfriend. I'll be with ya on this.

  28. Wow - very awesome - you got your "A" goal - got to run with your husband - changed the name of your blog and I'm sure you beat the walkers.

    What more could you ask for!

  29. Your goals were identical to mine for (what was supposed to be, before going preggers) my first half marathon! Thanks for a great report, it was really motivational and got me all excited for doing mine next year!

    (And the husband doing the race might just be the most romantic thing I've ever heard!)