“Don’t Think, Just Do” – Linsey Corbin
Where to begin. First, the last few weeks I’ve learned a lot about my body. The amount of swimming and cycling I’ve done has been awesome. Timmy and I have been working on our relationship and I also hit my highest yardage of swimming last week. Needless to say, it felt awesome. But this post is about: the Syracuse Half Marathon.
Now, if you know me. You know I’m a runner, a born runner, and running is absolutely my happy place. You also know that my training as of late has had a lot less running. On the flip side, it’s helped me to appreciate every run, no matter how far or how slow. As long as I was/am out on two feet, fresh air in my lungs, I was/am happy. Well, since January, my weekly milage has been about 15 MPW. Not ideal for a runner, but I’m trusting the process.
I got all my workouts in last week including the 2hr+ brick workout the day before my race at my Mom’s house. Naturally, after this workout I had a small breakdown – it was bound to happen. The crisis: I had no idea what kind of fitness I was in and why on earth did I choose a half marathon close to home. I was scared of embarrassing myself (silly, I know – but running and I have a relationship). Welp, I was able got it out of my system with the help of my mother and a few close friends.
Needless to say, I couldn’t be happier with my race. I warmed up – felt pretty terrible but brushed it off. Race conditions: 16 degrees with a nice windchill of 2. RD and race staff did an awesome job of clearing the roads and applying salt by hand (they were out at 1AM setting up the course). Our side of the road was even better than the side where the cars drove – that’s dedication and hard work. Weather wise? We all had to deal with it. The race was off and I settled in with the pack of women around the 7 min/mi pace. I had no idea where I should go, no insight into where the heck my run fitness and just held on and waited for the wheels to fall off.
The first few miles were fun, running with people I knew (after being a blonde and not realizing it – Sorry Marie and Jordyn!). I started the watch, but never looked at it or my HR. I was just going to race/run. Linsey Corbin’s blog kept running through my mind (and all week – see link above). She recently wrote about trusting your body and giving yourself a chance. Around mile 5, things started to get a little rough. My legs really started to get tired – but thank you so much to the older gentleman who ran with me the rest of the race – shoulder by shoulder and stride for stride. It was like you could read my mind (& reminded me of my amazing college teammates). I later learned his name Ken Mann – Thanks Strava!
The course is surprisingly hilly – mostly rolling, so what goes up comes down and that was nice. My calves started getting sore around 10k. At mile 9, a Bald Eagle flew overhead, which was really awesome to see. It helped a little. Finally reached two miles to go and told myself I can do anything for 15 min. Side note: mile 11 is only a few blocks from the finish line – it was rough. The last mile was the hardest. Everything just started to ache and cramp, which told me I ran with everything I had and gave it all. I finished with a 1:29.23, 10th Female, and 5th in my AG. Not bad for a runner who hasn’t been running.
Not only did I have a great race, but my athlete Alex ran out of her mind in the middle of marathon training for a 7 min PR on a cold day. The newspaper caught our interaction after she crossed the line. I wouldn’t deny if someone asked if she was holding me up too. My legs were giving out!
The real reason I signed up for this race. Syracuse is one of my favorite places and a trip home is always special. I got to see so many of my Ithaca friends as well as some from college. It truly was a special experience to see so many of the people who touch my life on a regular basis ❤ Plus, I was able to have some quality time with my Mom. I’ll never take that for granted, especially when we laugh hysterically to Modern Family. Finally, this guy who always makes me feel so special. Puppy snuggles really do fix everything!
No races on the calendar until Syracuse 70.3 (but that might change). Next up, a well earned recovery week and a trip to CA with the Cornell Track & Field Team. Needless to say, I’m excited for some warm weather! Thanks to Oiselle, Coeur Sports, Finger Lakes Running & Tri Co, and all my family and friends for the continued support. I don’t know where I’d be without each of you! ❤