Vancouver Lake Half Marathon – Race Recap

And I’m attempting to get back to blogging. Really this blog is going to be boring unless you like reading about running, reading about food, and reading about adventures. But it will mostly be about running and food.

I will go back and do a recap of my first half marathon I ran in December, but I thought I’d go ahead and do a recap of the race I ran yesterday first!

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Someday I’ll have a good race photo! And I’ll smile and look joyous! Also, who are you people who can run without carrying a bunch of stuff? I’m like gotta have my music, gotta bring a snack, bring my water with nuun. I’m just high maintenance!

 

For my second of 13 half marathons this year, I decided to run the Vancouver Lake Half Marathon.  This race is put on by my local running club, the Clark County Running Club and they really do a fantastic job! It was so well organized and put together.  All the volunteers were fantastic. They cap the race at under 500 people and I have to say I’m really loving these smaller events over the massive half marathons in the Portland and Seattle areas that I’ve run in the past.

I did not start the day off strong. I didn’t sleep well and I’ve been gone for two weeks and I was also still in the port a potty when the start bell went off! Eek! The boys came to cheer me on so I gave them kisses and away I went.  The thing that I’m most grateful about for this course is that it is flat, flat, flat. I LOVE it!

Until about mile 10, this was a usual half marathon for me. I start out like oh my god, this is going to take forever! I love to run. And there are many things I love to do, but that doesn’t always mean I want to spend all day doing them. I really should work on my speed work so that I can run faster because then I’d love it even more! I digress though. So first 2-3 miles, I’m always like oh god, this is never going to end. 13.1 miles is so far! But then I get into it and I’m like oh look at all this ground I’m covering. I’m definitely going to PR! And then I start getting competitive with all the folks around me. Mostly I just want to be in front of the speed walkers. 🙂 Although I want to know how they walk like that. It’s mesmerizing. I have a lot of respect for them and you’ll see why later in this story.

Then I hit mile 7. Mile 7 is where I lose friends if any of them are brave enough to run with me and usually they’re not because I tell them I don’t run with other people and I don’t want them there. At mile 7, I become a bitch from hell. I hate everyone, I hate everything. I’m like this race will never end, this is where I live now, perpetually running! And I’m kind of a bitch like that until I have almost 10 miles and then I perk up. I’m like oh, just a 5k left. You got this! You run 5ks all the time! It’s just another half hour or so, let’s try to make it even less! And that’s the beautiful frame of mind I was just about to enter, when hamstring pain in a serious way hit. Like shooting up and down my leg and it moved down into hamstring and calf pain. So I ran it until mile 11 and then I was like fuck it.  If I get injured this whole crazy plan is off. So better to walk the 2.1 miles. And then all the speed walkers passed me…

So, I’ve been thinking about what I did “wrong” in this round of training. Well, to start with my legs probably haven’t fully recovered from my December run so they’re not as fresh as when I went into that run. But I know that’s not what did it. That’s just an excuse to make myself feel better.  Here’s what really did it. 1) I stopped doing stretches every morning. Not for any particular reason. I just fell out of the habit. And 2) I’ve cheated on running with the elliptical training too many times! Sometimes I give my knees a break and do a day or two on the elliptical. Only looking back over the last  weeks since my December half marathon, I did way too many. So on to the February half marathon I march with intents on not taking it easy on the elliptical and stretching more!

In other news, I also have a cold. But I don’t have any injuries from the race so that’s all good. Choosing to walk the 2.1 miles was the right call.

In food related news. After this race I ate a footlong chili dog, friend mozzarella sticks, and a chocolate milkshake. I have zero regrets.

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