Last weekend, I embarked on my test run, the Heels Up Half Marathon, that I designated as the litmus test for my performance for my half marathon that is now only two weeks away. Less now since this has been published. But, anyways, the race itself was a great result for how I think I will do in Utah.
First, the racecourse was not flat. If I wanted the race to be easy, which a part of me kind of did, I would of wanted just that, but the addition of an abundance of hills prepped me for the trails in Zion National Park. Did the hills suck? Yes, yes they did. Were there more hills than I originally thought? Yes, but both were okay, because I went in knowing that this race was not going to be an easy one both because of the course itself and because of the distance I was about to log.
Honestly, I was a little nervous going into the race for a few reasons. One, I haven’t been able to put in longer distances, which I needed to, because of the time constraints I have on how long I can workout per day. So, 6.5 miles seemed like 26.2 to me before I even embarked on the course. Second, I got hit with either the cold or the flu the week of the race which kept me from running at all, so I really had no time to train or put in extra work without fear of it jeopardizing my attempt on Saturday. I wasn’t going to risk it. I been training for this, and the subsequent race after it for months now. I initially wanted to do the whole race, but wasn’t confident enough yet in pushing myself to that threshold, so the relay was perfect for myself to gauge where I was at in my training. I performed better than I thought.
I finished my portion of the relay in roughly an hour. Beating the goal I set that morning by 15 min, and making it more plausible that I achieve my goal of 2hrs when I get to Utah. Admittedly, my time would have been faster if I hadn’t stopped to get water, running and attempting to drink at the same time I learned is not a good idea, so roughly 3-4 minutes were added. And, I lost time when I lost feeling in my right foot around mile five so I stopped to try and get some feeling in it. All in all it was a great experience to get out there, and accomplish the goals that I set for myself.
The race in Utah will be difficult. I know that, and I am expecting it to be the hardest race in my life as I have never logged over ten miles in one run. I am confident that I will complete in under the 2hr 30min window that I am giving myself to finish, but if it is slower I am okay with it because at least I crossed the finished line. The community of running is open to everyone at every skill level, and even though I am not the fastest they are happy just to see me out there competing along side every one else. I had a blast this weekend, I know I will in two weeks, and I look forward to more races in the future.