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Fly When You Need to Fly (A Race Recap)

As I type this, I am in pain. My quads are burning and my hips are aching. Every time I get up from my desk chair, I feel like my thighs and glutes are going to give out beneath me.

It's a delicious soreness that makes me grin from ear to ear.

The pain is a gift left over from racing the Towpath Half Marathon this weekend. To make a long story short: I nailed it. I ran smart, fast and free ... and I have a shiny new PR to prove it.

My Camelbak is much cuter than my medal, but that's OK.

When the field took off in front of me during the first mile (which was pretty much all downhill), I reined it in and found my pace. And when everyone slowed to climb two bridges, I put the pedal to the medal and coasted my way down the other side. I kept my head on straight and my focus on my body, not my watch. I decided to let my legs fly - after weeks of training, I trusted them to know what they had to do.

I thought about running with my brother, but he ran with the ponies when the gun went off, and I knew I couldn't hold that pace for long. Unfortunately, neither could he. Around mile 8 or 9, he hit a wall ... Around mile 11, I tapped him on the shoulder and said hello. I knew he was hurting, but I also knew I needed to push on - I still had gas in the tank, and my legs were still revving the engine.

Me and my brother Scott at the finish line ... we were both wrecked, but managed a smile. 
I gradually pushed and pushed, until I couldn't push any more. As I climbed the staggering hill at mile 12 (and again at mile 13!) I let myself slide into autopilot and just enjoy the satisfaction of knowing I was going to make it under goal. As I crossed the finish line, the race clock (gun time) said 1:57:11... a PR for sure (previous was 1:59:39)! Later, I was even more thrilled to learn my chip time was 20 seconds faster: 1:56:51. 

The Towpath Half Marathon wasn't a big race, nor was it all that exciting, but it was thoroughly satisfying for me. I proved to myself that training hard does pay off, even though illness and injury threatened to throw me off track. I also learned I need to listen to my body: Rest when you need to rest ... and fly when you need to fly.

Beautiful day + beautiful course = beautiful PR

Comments

  1. Congrats on the shiny new PR!!! That is just the best feeling ever.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Great job!! I did the towpath two years ago and liked it. That's an awesome PR! Way to get it!

    ReplyDelete

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