Friday, April 22, 2011

13.1 miles of fun!

This past Sunday, one of my favorite co-workers and I ran a half marathon together. This was my third half marathon and her second. We decided to do this race together last year and had promised each other we would train together by going down to the gym on the days we worked the same shift and run the treadmills.

At first we were really good about it... and then life sorta happened. Things got crazy and busy. I wasn't running much during the week but because I have 3 (yup 3) full marathons on the books I HAD to train on the weekends. B on the other hand kinda fell off the map... unfortunately she got into a terrible car accident recently and has had some of life's lovely curveballs thrown her way. (She's totally fine now... thank God) I also had a 22 mile run scheduled for just 7 days after the 1/2 marathon. So needless to say, we were both very seriously considering ditching this race.... but after much convincing on my part and a decision to make this a slow "fun run" we woke up at an ungodly hour on virtually no sleep and headed over to Santa Cruz beach to do our first half marathon together!
Let me just say that this was hands down one of the funnest races I have ever run. Having B as my running buddy and deciding to take it easy and make it a fun, goofy run... it made all the difference. We dressed in bright colors and put our hair in pigtails with red, white and blue ribbons tied around them. We laughed and joked and cheered on the runners ahead of us. We even met a few people along the way and made some new friends!

We even decided we were going to document this glorious event with a few silly videos (two of which include our pre-race victory dances!)

The course ended up being absolutely beautiful and I look forward to hopefully running this race again next year...

And since it started and ended at Santa Cruz beach we got to see the surfers out riding the waves as we came in for the finish line
The amazing thing about this race was that it was the first time I could actually feel a difference in my running because of my marathon training.
I did run this race pretty slow for my usual pace. I was about 30 minutes beyond my PR for a half marathon... coming in at 3:01 hours... but I could feel a drastic difference in my recovery time after this race. The course was relatively flat... only a few steep hills to worry about...
but still... it felt great to wake up the next day with virtually no soreness. I even jumped on the treadmill the next night at work and did a 5K of sprint intervals!
Now if only I could feel that good after my 22 mile runs too :P
Definitely one of the best races I have ever done.
Thanks B for making it so much fun!

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