Yesterday was the OKC Memorial Half Marathon that I've been talking about. And I survived.
I would definitely say that it was easier than my first half in 2010, but nothing about it was actually easy.
Duke stayed with my parents the night before so that Colt and I could get ready for the race. We ate pasta with friends (and a fellow racer), put all of our race stuff out, and went to bed. (And let me just say, it's weird sleeping in your own home without your baby there.)
Saturday night and Sunday morning consisted of the usual get-ready-for-a-race items of business ... clipping toenails, shaving legs, getting a playlist ready, and pumping. I pumped in the car on the way to the race and because I was distracted by conversation, I didn't realize the bottle I was pumping into was completely full and actually overflowing onto my shorts. So, I started the race being christened with breastmilk.
We waited in the dark, stretched, got nervous, talked, stretched some more, got nervous ... until finally it was time. We heard a really interesting rendition of "The Star-Spangled Banner" and then we were off. I started the race with Radiohead's "Everything in Its Right Place," which makes trying to get through the crowd of runners a bit more enjoyable. I was feeling good.
It was a humid and muggy start so by mile 3, I was pretty sweaty. Either the humidity lifted or I got used to it, but by mile 5, it felt better. It also started to rain which felt really nice. At about the halfway point, I turned a corner and saw an older man with a bloodied face being loaded onto a stretcher. Pretty encouraging.
Once I hit mile 8, I was really starting to wonder if I could finish this thing. I'd kept up with my 11.30 pace up until that point. My knees were pretty tight and my legs were so ready to stop. The following mile markers seemed like they took forever to come. When I made the last turn onto Broadway and saw the words FINISH, I was so relieved. I looked down at my watch and realized that if I wanted to beat my previous time, I needed to book it. I did my first half in 2:37:38 and I finished this one in 2:36:48. Yes, I beat it by the hair of my chinny chin chin. But hey, that's all I asked of myself. I finished and I beat my time. I win.
(And, because I know all of you are on the edge of your seat wanting to know, I received 5,263rd place.)
So, yesterday we spent the day recovering. (P.S. Race recovery with a baby is a bit different than race recovery without one.)
I'm glad I trained, I'm glad I ran, and I'm glad it's over. Maybe next year I can beat my time by a whole minute!