Sunday, April 25, 2010

Get In Gear Half Marathon Recap!

Saturday was my second Half Marathon, the Get In Gear! 

I had 2 goals: 1) Not to walk and 2) to come in at 2:05: 00 which is 8 minutes slower than my first half, the Monster Dash in October. My training was less intense this time around especially my interval training so although I wanted a time goal, I cut myself some slack! 

I did a little VLOG before I left my house to show you the rain I got to run in and my strategic outfit for it! 

Meghan picked me up and we stopped and picked up some trash bags to wear -- we didn't know what size we were 30 gallon, or 39 gallon? Sizing these days, ya know!? 

We took off to the shuttle buses to get to the race, check our bags and line up! We were JUST in time! 

Crazy happy face, rainy face!

It was raining but it wasn't cold, so I was feeling pretty good when we started. I ditched the trash bag and found my pace, I was clipping right along, but there were over 7,000 people participating. (I can't find the exact number, but added up the finishers!) I was navigating from curb to sidewalk and street, moving around people trying to keep my pace when 

WHAM, I hit the ground! 

I hit with my knee's hard, my chest and my right hand knuckles. I jumped up, even wetter, dirty and confused! A nice man grabbed my arm and asked if I was ok, I said Yep, I'm fine! and took off. I was limping for a few steps, but sucked it up!! It wasn't till a few minutes later that I looked down to see that I was bleeding! 

So much for my socks and skirt plan to feel light and not soggy when I ran. I saved a pair of pants from certain tearing, but bloodied myself up good instead! I have no idea what I tripped on (curb, my own feet, crack in the road?) but it didn't matter, I wasn't even at mile 2 and nothing was stopping me. 

It was very nearly pouring rain as we ran over the Mississippi River around mile 3! 
I got trapped on the bridge behind groups running three and four across with headphones on. I tried maneuvering around them, but with little luck. I started to yell, On your left! like I was a cyclist and IT WORKED!! People started to move over a bit and I was able to pass a few. 

Do you think running crowds should function like traffic and leave a passing lane?  When they don't it's a pet peeve of mine! 

After the 10k and half marathon split, about mile 5, things really calmed down. There were only 900 half marathoners, so for the last 8 miles, there were much fewer, quieter spectators! 

I was feeling good, my knee was the least of my worries and I had a less populated road to try and make up time. This race was me against the clock! 

I pulled out my snacks: dried apricots and Cliff bar Shot Blocks! I was feeling strong and happy and once I saw the elite runners turn around, I started watching for a few people I knew! It helped to keep my focus on something for a while! I saw friends Chris and Doug each before the 9 mile mark and it pumped me up!! 

The whole race (especially after my spill) I focused on my form: 

  • Shoulders back
  • feet moving with quick, light steps
  •  mid foot strike to forefoot strike
  •  I pretended my legs were little rubber bands:  feet touching the ground then springing forward and up as soon as they touched. 
  • I leaned forward slightly
  •  I kept my arms pumping forward not across my body. 

I actually had people yelling: nice form, good form--it was SO encouraging! I felt like yelling back, Thank you, I have been working on it! 

A few of my favorite things people yelled: 
Go, I <3 the lakes
Go cupcake
Nice Skirt!

I had such a good finish! I felt strong and turned it up a notch at the 10 mile mark. I think to myself, it's once around Lake of the isles! You eat runs like that for Breakfast!! Telling myself I have less than 30 minutes allows me to really give it my all and bring it home strong! 

Stepping across the finish line, I saw my clock time and that was 5 min less than my goal. But knew that my chip time was faster, so I was happy!!! 

I think the 4 mile and 10 mile splits are swapped!

OFFICIAL finishing time: 157:03, 41 seconds faster than my last half! I was overjoyed, it was unexpected! 

I grabbed a ton of post race food like yogurt, banana's, nut rolls and of course Chocolate milk! 
I changed into a few dry things, put on another plastic bag (it's all the race fashion) and headed home on the train. That's when I took inventory of the knee injury! 
* WARNING-Gross pics dead ahead! 

Hmm...scraped and bruised, but I think it looks worse than it is. I am glad I didn't wear expensive Lucy running pants like I planned on. A woman at the race kept trying to get me to go to the first aid station and I told her no, I had to get pics first!!  

Cleaned up at home: just 2 scrapes from the fall, not so bad! 

I pulled out my Minnesota Rollergirls First Aid kit and fixed myself up so 
I could head out for a post race brunch with La from the The Curvy Life! She ran the 10k and it was her first race, she rocked it! Head over to her blog and check out the recap! 

Wouldn't you know it, I step outside and it's beautiful!! 

We went to The Bad Waitress and I had the Death Valley Veggie Omelet and a Velvet hammer (espresso and brewed coffee!) 

It was fantastic!

La and I hung out and talked for OVER 2 hours. She's the best. 

It was the perfect end to the race day! I met both of my official goals, I FELT great during the race, I had a good time and I learned a lesson:

We can't control somethings that happen to us, but we CAN control how we respond to them. When I wiped out even before mile number two, I could have looked at my ripped gloves, bloodied hands and knee and said, "Na, I can't do this." I could have gotten angry or cried because it slowed me down and ruined my race day and hurt!!

OR I can stand up and say "This is my race, and I will finish!" I trained for it, I had CONFIDENCE I could run it, and I knew I couldn't quit. You know, on facebook the night before I ran, I dedicated this race to my older brothers because I love them-- and I believe that they have great purpose in life! I wasn't going to let one little trip up, ruin that --I was dedicating my success to their successes and one fall doesn't mean we can't still brush ourselves off and still win!

 Sometimes things that are out of our control happen, sometimes in life we fall down, we hit bumps in the road, ones that weren't supposed to happen. I hit bumps for 8 years trying to get my crap together in life, but I didn't give up! We stand up and say, I am starting from here, again. I count points again from here. I will find love again, I can have forgiveness and be new again, starting today!  I want to point out that after my fall I focused more on my form and it paid off, I felt great and my time rocked.

Don't let the setbacks you face in life, KEEP you back. Use them as stepping stones, as learning experiences and build your way up despite them, climb over them and look ahead to the finish, you can win that race you are running today.

Congrats to Doug F. Chris,  Julie, Meghan, La, Carly, Ann, Sarah, Ellen and anyone else I missed who ran & rocked the Get in Gear! 


Jennifer said...

You are so hardcore for running 1. in the rain and 2. with a knee that looks like that! I actually signed up for my first 1/2 marathon today, so your post was extra fun for me to read! You did a great job and your time is something to really be admired!

The Curvy Life said...

YAY YOU!! You rock and our brunch together was the icing on the cake of a fabulous (but rainy) day!! Thanks for the shout out! I LOVE That picture of us!! I am so excited for my first HALF (The Monster Dash is the plan!)

Man- your knee looked so much worse when I saw you around mile 3-4ish! Glad it ended up being "not too bad" LOL You ROCK WOMAN!


Doug F. said...

Congrats on sticking with it and finishing with a great time. It was nice to see you afterwards. And thanks for the shout out. :)

Chari said...

awesome!! I'm so inspired by the rain (I hide from the rain!) AND falling on your knee, you still had an awesome race!

Jumper 2.0 said...

"Thank you, I have been working on it! "


That would have been awesome and funny to hear, just because it would be such an unexpected response.

Good job on your half mary!

Meghan said...

ahhh i had so much fun with you!!! great job!

Julie said...

Hi Mary,
Woo hoo, you had a great time!! We could run together...we have about the same pace:) What a bummer that I didn't get to see you or so many of the other bloggers that were out there running yesterday! Ouchy on the knee...way to be a rock star and still finish with an awesome pace:) We have got to meet at one of the next Minneapolis runs!

Kaitlin said...

Hey! I used to live in that apartment building! I now live in Northeast, but I REALLY miss living so close to the Wedge! Great job with the half marathon and ouch on the knee! Hope it is feeling better.

Chris H. said...

You ROCK, Mary! You have such a wonderful outlook & attitude - thank you. What a great day for you - very proud of your PR! And thanks for the shout-out - it was great seeing you, and you put a big smile on my face at a point when I needed it :) I'm glad the knee will be OK.

I love that quote "We can't control somethings that happen to us, but we CAN control how we respond to them." - that's always been a go-to mantra for me in my recovery, and is SO true!

Wishing you a wonderful start to the week :)

Jess said...

Holy, that's a GREAT time, especially with that big boo boo! Man, looking at your knee makes me hurt.

And NICE FORM! I'm doing minimalist running now to work on natural form and midfoot striking is so much better than heel striking (although my calves are still getting used to it).

Way to finish awesome and strong! I'll keep checking back. My first half is in June. I'm kind of intimidated since I haven't been training that far in distance (getting used to my VFFs) but I'm going to crawl to the finish line if I have to.

Miz said...


I thought my Disney Princess half was tough.



Megan said...

Awesome time, Mary! And way to go even after a fall... I would've kept running, too. Less than ideal conditions, and you overcame them to have a FABULOUS half!

Shan said...

Congrats Mary and thank you for this inspiring post! I love the lesson at the end. Thank you!

Paige (Two Runners And A Brown Dog) said...

A banged up knee, rain, and still a great race! You are hard core! Way to rock it, girl!

Jen, a priorfatgirl said...

Like a true blogger, you refused medical treatment until you took a picture!

I got teary eyed reading your post - what an amazing accomplishment Mary! Congratulations on such an memorable experience!

Related Posts with Thumbnails


Although Mary from Fit this girl is a CPT, always consult your physician or health care provider before beginning any nutrition or exercise program. Use of the programs, advice, and information contained in this website is at the sole choice and risk of the reader.