I've finished my first half-marathon, with a time of 2:11:33.
Four-and-a-half months of training brought me to one single day. This past Saturday, April 22, I ran in my first ever half-marathon. And it was great.
We woke up and went for a very slow 20 minute run. My last run before the big race.
Afterwards, we packed the car and made our way to Kansas City. We ate at a little Thai place we like to go to, then hit a few stores before making our way to the race expo.
I've never been to a race large enough to have an expo, it was fun. We picked up my bib and shirt and had a look at all the vendors and other booths.
After that we headed to my Beloved's sister's house, where we were crashing for the weekend.
I was very stressed out, worrying if my training was going to be adequate and fretting over the weather forecast — they had been forecasting rain all week.
We went to bed, but didn't sleep much. Every time it started raining, I'd wake up. And I woke up numerous times convinced I had overslept and missed my race.
Finally about 4:30 I decided to quit fighting it and get up. We got dressed, had a small breakfast and got ready to head out.
I was ecstatic to see the radar indicating the rain was just about over. It was cold out — about 45 degrees — but I could handle that. Rain would've made it much harder.
We arrived at the race area about 6 a.m., it was scheduled to start at 6:45. We parked and made our way to the starting line.
The waiting was the hardest part. Forty-five degrees isn't very cold if you're running all out. But standing around in shorts and light shirts was a little uncomfortable. Thankfully runners are a friendly group and we all passed the time chatting.
They delayed the start twice to allow folks stuck in traffic more time to make it to the start line. But finally about 7:10 or so they sang the national anthem and fired the cannon and we were off.
The race was really great. The course was challenging but not terribly hard. And it was a nice tour of the neighborhoods of Olathe.
The people were great. Chatting and laughing with each other along the course. Sharing stories.
We even got passed by a dragon! It was a group aiming to get the Guiness Book of World Records record for the fastest marathon in a 10-person costume. I haven't heard yet if they were succesful.
I had no reason to doubt my training, I was aiming for a two hours, 10 minute finish time. And I hit most of my mile times just exactly where I wanted to.
The last three miles were the most challenging though. There were three rather steep hills. And then in the last mile, we made our final turn north towards the finish line and were immediately greeted by a wind right in our face that must've been close to 20 miles per hour.
But I finished. My time was 2:11:33. Very close to what I wanted. And I couldn't be more happy. I got my medal and found my wife. And went straight to get food!
I wish I'd been able to stay and participate in more of the activities, but I was exhausted and with that wind it was really chilly.
It was a really great race, and I had a really great time. I can't wait for next year!