I did my second half marathon last Sunday. I am still sore from the run but that is expected as I did not train enough for this event. You would think I would be more prepared with this one seeing that it's my second Half. Nope. I registered myself in December knowing that I will have enough time to train for the race but nope. The longest run I did before this race was a 15km run in January.
Last year, I dragged my family down to Bunbury so I can run my first 10km run. It was so much fun that this year, I decided to go back and run it again. This time, the Half Marathon. The course is so beautiful and the atmosphere is magical. I say this because I know almost everyone running the event. Most of them my parkrun family. Weather wise this year was more favourable. Cooler with spots of rain. My ideal conditions to run.
This race was a hard one for me mentally. Physically, I know I can do the distance but mentally I was defeated. I was not in a good mind space. My plan was to finish it in 3.30 hours. I calculated that since I have not trained for this race and I did my first Half in 3 hours and a bit, I could do it in 3.30 hours. Easy.
The first 10kms went by quickly. I had to stop twice to use the toilet. TWICE! I need to find a way to empty my bowels pre race next time. I was meant to run with my running buddy Nat but due to the lack of training and the need to go to the toilet, she was far ahead of me. That was fine as I was prepared for her to run ahead. I put on my headphones and my favourite podcasts on and I was all good.
As I looped back to the starting line, I can hear cowbells and girls screaming my name cheering me on. Bless Didi's and Nat's heart. Their cheers lifted my spirit and it felt like I could definitely do this. As I headed on to the second leg of the course, it started to rain just a little bit. I have never ran this part of the course before and it seemed like it went on FOREVER! By the 15km mark, I was ready to throw in the towel and call it quits. I was in tears as I was telling myself that I couldn't possibly go on anymore. As I was walking, a friendly guy came up behind me and ask if I was ok and kindly offered to pace me. I told him that I am on my turtle pace and I was ready to give up and he told me not to stop as it is harder to stop and start again. Instead he kept telling me to walk to the next spot then the next spot and so on. Funnily enough, that is what I usually tell myself when I train.
After a kilometre or two, he wished me luck and went on but said that he will check up on me on the loop back. He did. He also told me "less than a parkrun left, you can do it!" and I did. I changed my playlist As I came around the corner from the lighthouse, I picked up my pace and started running as fast as my legs could carry me. My feet were so sore from the blisters that I was trying not to think about it as I was running.
I have never been so happy to hear my name being called as I was running down the finishing chute. I was even happier to see all my parkrun buddies, my Rogue Runners, my husband and my daughter all greeting and cheering for me at the end! I am so sorry if I gave any of my friends sweaty hugs, I can't even remember how my finishing medal got around my neck. I did however remember to stop my Garmin watch.
My official time was 3 hours 54 minutes and the last runner to cross the line. I think they should give some sort of prize money to the one that always finishes the race last. This is the second time I finished last in a race. HAHA... Well someone has to finish last right? I was surprised that I didn't cry at the end though. I thought I would as this was by far the hardest run, mentally, that I have ever done. Next time, I will be prepared for a race.
I did have my sights on running my first marathon race, but I know, I am not entirely prepared for it yet so I am planning to run another half marathon in June. This time, I will be sure to mentally prepare myself as well.