A to B Half Marathon Recap

Derek is in DC this week on a business trip which means I'm out west in Utah holding up the fort on my own. I hate when Derek leaves because I'm always afraid of going to bed, which means I've spent tonight watching two long running documentaries, and then at midnight decided it was a good time to start writing my recap post for the half marathon I ran a few weeks ago. 

The A to B Half Marathon was put on by a mom and a dad for their nine year old daughter. The entire family, mom, dad, nine-year-old daughter, and twelve-year-old son, all trained together to run the Snow Canyon Half Marathon this October in St George, Utah. The night before the race, the nine-year-old daughter started throwing up in her hotel room, and she was not able to compete in the half marathon that she trained so hard for. 

Her parents wanted to find another race for her, but couldn't get one to work out in their time schedules, so the dad just up and created a half marathon for her. The race got advertised in several running groups that I'm a part of, and I decided that I couldn't pass down a $10 half marathon that was promising medals. 

My friend Jen who paces half marathons all the time said that she would run it with me, and she really wanted to get me across the finish line at 2 hours, 10 minutes, which would have been a 10 minute PR from my last race in October. I was so nervous the night before the race, and was pretty sure Jen had more confidence in my abilities then I did. 

When the race started, it felt like Jen was running so hard. My only job was to keep up with her, but it was cold, my throat was burning, and I actually thought I was going to die if I kept the pace up. She kept telling me that the first few miles would stink, but that I would find my groove eventually. 

Around miles 5-6 the pace finally started to feel comfortable and I started going on and on about how this was the greatest run I'd ever done in my entire life. I was probably sounding so annoying, but I had really found my stride at this point and was getting excited. 

Around mile 7 there was an aid station with Gatorade right before some big hills and I was so excited. I really love Gatorade, so we chugged some and started the hills. I'm actually a lot stronger going uphill then I feel like I am going downhill, so this is the one part of the course that I felt like I did well on. We ran a loop around Lagoon, and then headed back to the people's house who hosted the Half Marathon.

We past the aid station with the Gatorade again on the way back and grabbed some more, and this time Jen told me to take one of my Gu's (endurance gels), that I had in my pocket. I am very new to taking these while running and the texture is still hard for me and I almost barfed it out on the road. I pulled myself together and got it down so that I could keep going. 

The last couple miles of the race our pace was slowing down a little bit and Jen told me that if I had it in me to just go. I felt awful leaving her, but also wanted to try and hit my time, so I just went for it. We ran mile 10 at a 10:40 pace, and then I did mile 11 at 10:03, mile 12 at 9:25, and then finished mile 13 at 9:13. There is nothing better to a runner then seeing negative splits at the end of a race like that. I finished the race in 2:09:57, and it was the greatest feeling ever. I honestly didn't know I could run a pace like that, for that long. I cried at the end, like I usually do at races, and you couldn't wipe the smile off my face the rest of the day. This was one of my favorite races yet! 

I'm so so grateful for Jen because she really helped me to know that I'm a lot faster than I think I am, and that I really had it in me the entire time. I know I never would have finished the race in the time that I did without her. She was so helpful in getting me through those first few miles in the beginning because they were so hard for me! I should probably text her and see if she'll sign my medal ;) 

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