Last sunday morning was awesome and it wasn’t even spent in bed like all sunday mornings should be. Instead of the usual routine of trying to sleep in while a cat gives me a less than friendly back massage and begs for food, I headed into town and ran my third ever half-marathon instead. Third ever and first of a plan of four for this year. After my first half in Taupo last August and the second one in Kerikeri in November, I was really excited about running a third one.
So excited I injured my knee a week before race day. Am I the clumsiest person you’ve ever met or just second clumsiest? With a bruised and sore knee, I dragged myself out the sunday before for a 15.5km run before deciding it was probably time to just jump straight to the part of the training that involves sitting on the couch eating lots of crap and feeling sorry for yourself. So that’s what I did. One 5km run all week and the knee showed little sign of improvement.
So on race day, I had to sport a super sexy knee brace and hope that I could end the 21.1km course without having to have my leg amputated or OMG a knee brace tan line. Spoiler: I still have both legs.
The data in the images is off my Nike+ app thingy (I call things thingy because I’m technical like that). The organisers of this event didn’t actually record anyone’s time which was kind of sucky for people like me who like to know exactly how long they take from start to finish. My nike+ isn’t always super accurate and actually think I ran more like 21.9km. I also only stopped it about 20 seconds after crossing the finish line so none of that is precise, just a good indication.
This wasn’t my best half-marathon time but it was, by far, the easiest half-marathon I’ve ever done. Nothing to do with the conditions – there were a couple of uphills to annoy my old-lady’s knee, the weather was maybe a little too hot and the staggered start didn’t exactly give me the whole adrenaline rush I normally get from these events. But for some crazy reason, I got really into it and felt amazing the entire time. I remember passing the 6km marker and feeling surprised because I felt we had only just started.
At about the 12km mark, I spotted my awesome friends (*waves!*) who had driven there to see me run. They followed me in the car for a while, stopping often for photos, high fives and just a whole lot of shouting my name. Not sure they have any idea how awesome I think they are for doing that but yeah, they are kind of fabulous that way. They left me at about 18km and drove to the finish line. I ran a really good final 3km along the waterfront, made slightly less amazing by the many walkers I had to dodge and the damn knee that kept on reminding me of its existence. I crossed the finish line only to realise and, pretty much as soon as that happened, my knee stopped hurting. It’s been three days, still not hurting. In fact – and here’s the real first! – nothing is hurting. I was walking around in high heels the day after, which was kind of a novelty for me.
So this is it. First half-marathon of the year done, three more to go. Roll on Rotorua! I’m pretty excited about kicking your ass in two months time!