Monday, May 1, 2017

Pro Football Hall of Fame Half Marathon Recap, Part I

The thing about me is EVERYTHING is about me, right? So, Part I of my race recap will be what I learned about myself today.

It's ALL about ME.  Always.

First, my finish time for the half marathon was 2:14:29.  This isn't fabulous, but it isn't totally disgraceful either. A part of me had hoped that I would PR this race, even run it in fewer than two hours, but I knew from the first step that this wouldn't happen.  Why?

1. It was SUPER-HOT today, and it was very muggy, too. I knew that I should readjust my pace when I started sweating profusely in the first two miles. Scary moment: at mile 11 I passed a woman who had collapsed and stopped breathing. Someone was administering CPR. It was awful.

2. I had stomach cramps starting at mile 5. This was because I didn't have adequate bathroom time before the race. You know what I mean. Anyway, I spent a good 3-4 minutes in the portapotty at mile 7.

Guess I shouldn't have eaten this the night before the race.

3.  I am 47 years old. This is a fact. I have not been in super-great shape my whole life; in fact, I started running after I turned 40. I may have hit my PR in the half when I did Akron in 2:00:52.

This is EXACTLY what 47 looks like.

4. I am carrying at least 10 pounds that I shouldn't be carrying, and that isn't even going by race weight. In that scenario, I am carrying at least 15 extra pounds. I feel those 10 pounds every day, so I know they affect my pace. I hope to lose them while training for the Akron Marathon, but we will see.
This is EXACTLY how I look when I need to lose 10-15 pounds.

5. I am currently experiencing a lot of anxiety and stress, and today I started the race completely stressed out. This definitely affects my performance.

This is EXACTLY how I look when I'm stressed out.

6. I'm just not hungry to race anymore. I don't know if it's marathon training or trail running or age or what, but I don't care to run balls-to-the-wall anymore.

I did learn something positive about myself today. As you may have read, I have been worried about having heart palpitations at unexpected moments of running, twice during races. This has made me reluctant to race; that is why the Pro Football Hall of Fame is my first race of the year. Today I strapped on my heart rate monitor because I wanted to have data in case I experienced any problems.

There were a few times that I felt like I was going to have heart palpitations, so I checked my heart rate during those times. . . and I was completely normal. When that happened, I felt reassured that I wasn't going to have to walk and wheeze for the rest of the race. I told myself that it was in my head, and the feeling passed. Does this mean that it's all in my head? Maybe. I suspect that it is, especially since I've had an electrocardiogram and a blood test with perfectly normal results, but I'm still going to see a cardiologist to make sure. Anyway, it made me feel so much more secure in pushing myself a little bit. . .not that my finish time reflects that.

Also, this is my first race after the implantation of my urethral sling. I can't tell you how my life has changed for the better because of this surgery. Let's leave it with this: no screaming in the shower because of chafing caused by incontinence pads. You know what I mean.

Anyway, I haven't touched on the actual race, so I will save that for a another post. For now, I'm prepared to accept my results and think about how to improve them for future races, specifically for the Rite Aid Cleveland Marathon, which will be my A-race this year.  Wanna join me? Click here to register or volunteer.

Will the Pro Football Hall of Fame Marathon be one of those future races? Check back soon to find out.  Until then, run happy, Peeps!

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