Monday, October 7, 2013

Laugh and a Half Marathon - June 2013 - 1:47:14

This was the THREE race. Third year of the Laugh and a Half Marathon, third half of 2013, and third 1:47. In a row… 

The race was held in the middle of June just like the past years. There had been some lovely thunderstorms the night before, leaving a pretty humid morning for the race. Again, the best part of this race is rolling out of my own bed and driving less than a mile to the starting line. I had my breakfast of Peanut Butter Cheerios, grabbed my gear, and headed to the senior high where the race starts and finishes. 

I had been dealing with some shin pain leading up to the race. That morning both shins seemed aggravated as soon as I put my Pro Compression socks on. My goal for the race was to PR, but I was quite nervous at the start. 

Rachel and I before her 5K!

Same ol’ story on this race. The course is a double loop. This year the route was altered slightly due to some road construction. I have to say, I preferred the adjusted route, as it looped back through a main street of town, as opposed to one out on the edge. This race felt hard. Maybe it was the humidity, achy shins, or just burn out from my last two races. The weather started to make a turn for the worse after I started my second loop. The sky was getting darker and darker and by mile 9 there was some lightening shooting across the sky. All I could think of was how angry I would be if they pulled us off the course. Who cares if I get struck by lightning, right? Not me. Keep running. 

EVIL storm clouds!


Mile 10. WIND. I was back in town starting the last 5K when the wind came up out of nowhere. The last 5K in any half usually sucks in one way or another. This was literal. The rain started coming down hard at maybe 11.5. The very last turn to head on the home stretch was directly into the wind. The rain was coming down in sheets, and the wind was blowing the rain and the puddles directly at me. I finally crossed the finish line at 1:47:14. Identical time, to the second, of my half in Yankton in April. Had the elements not been such a major factor at the very end, I easily would have PRed. 

The clock had been taken down by the time I finished due to the rain, and there were very few spectators left. My mom was wearing a poncho and waiting at the finish. The rain let up as soon as I finished. I grabbed some water, banana, and granola bar and headed over to the results area to check for an official time. They attempted to print the results and keep them current, but the wind was taking it away as fast as they could put it up. The temperature had dropped significantly at this point, so we headed back to my house to grab a jacket and come back for the awards. 

The nice thing about a small, local race is the awards ceremony. They place out top three in each age division, which is pretty cool. Last year I got third in my age group and didn’t realize it until my medal arrived in the mail over a month later. This year I wanted to attend the awards ceremony. We waited around until my name was called for second place in my age group and I got to go up to the podium to get my medal. Pretty sweet deal, a finisher’s medal, and a shiny place medal! 

I couldn’t wait to get home and shower and relax in my Pro Compression sleeves the rest of the day! I was pretty bummed about my performance and time in this race at first. It was frustrating to not have seen any improvement on the time clock over the last three months. But given the rain and the wind in this race and Papillion, I decided I was thankful for my consistency, and ability to finish strong under crappy conditions. My second place medal was pretty cool as well. I was glad to have my mom there to take pictures and wait in the rain for me at the finish, and happy to have Ben there when I got my award!