Monday, April 27, 2009

Music City Half-Marathon

What would make 31,000 people run for 13.1 miles in 87 degree heat? You've got me? At least in Pamplona there are bulls chasing them! But I did it! I Ran the Music City 1/2 Marathon in 2 hours and 22 minutes. My previous race time was 2 hours 17 minutes and I was trying to beat that time, but I am happy with 2:22. Factoring in the heat and hills and crowd, oh ya, and the fact that I had a baby 6 months ago, I am pretty happy with my time. I was able to hang with the 2:15 pace group for the first 6.5 miles but then it just got too crowded to keep up with them and I wasn’t having any fun. So I eased up a bit and really enjoyed miles 6-10. The last three miles were rough, but I “ran” the whole way. I use that term loosely. I have no war wounds from yesterday except a sunburn and sore quads.

The biggest factor was the crowds. There were over 31,000 runners! I felt like I was shoulder to shoulder with people for the first 7 miles. I placed 9,137 out of 22,749 finishers in the half marathon. I finished 4,422 out of the 14,505 female finishers in the half marathon. To be in the top 30% of female finishers makes me feel pretty good, I have to say.

As I was crossing the finish line I was sort of sad because I had no one there to cheer me on or hug me in a congratulatory manner. But once I got past the finish line and saw the crowds I was so glad Dave had not brought Emily into that mob of people. When I got back to Franklin, my sweet husband, Emily and Dave's mom had on display a giant balloon bouquet, gorgeous red and yellow tulips, champagne, Gatorade, and snacks. The funny thing was that they couldn’t find a congratulations balloon, so he bought one that had a little girl on the front and it said “13 Today” so Dave added a “.1” because the half marathon is 13.1 miles. Too funny! I love my husband!

As much as I enjoyed it, I will probably not be running this particular race again simply because of the crowds. I plan to run the St. Jude Half-Marathon again this December in Memphis. I am still contemplating running a Full Marathon next May in San Diego with my brother. The jury is still out. As Dave likes to remind me, I am not a gazelle and you have to be a gazelle to run that far. For now, I am just going to enjoy my recent accomplishment and my hot tub.

Funny Race Moments:

Two girls running with homemade T-shirts with writting on the back;

  • Girl 1: "It's my first time"
  • Girl 2: "That's what she said!"

Man with his three small sons on the sideline cheering on his wife;

  • Dad's sign: "#22356 is my wife!"
  • Boy 1 sign: "Run Mommy, Run!"
  • Boy 2 sign: "You can do it Mommy!"
  • Boy 3 sign: "Don't puke Mommy!"

At about mile 3 I saw a tiny, frail old man who had to be at least 85 years old, no joke. As I ran past him I said to him, "Good job, you're doing great!" Then I noticed he wasn't wearing a half marathon race tag, he was wearing a FULL MARATHON race tag! Are you kidding me?!?!?!

Sign at mile marker 6 "Beer this way. 20.2 miles ahead!"