I did it. I completed a half marathon and didn't die. But let me back up. The race was on Sunday 3/27 so my two sisters and I plus our friend and her sister decided to all go up to Dallas on Saturday. The day before the race is when you have to pick up your race packet with your bib (the number you pin on your shirt) and your shoe chip (it has a sensor that automatically tracks your time when you start, finish, and a few spots in between), and race shirt. Then there is the expo. Imagine all sorts of companies setting up booths to sell race stuff that also give away free samples and have drawings for free things....shoes, race shirts, running shirts, energy snacks and drinks, etc. One sister bought a running skirt and then my other sister won a free one! We carb loaded on pasta then prepared our gear for the next morning. For two of us this was our first big race. We were introduced to "the rules". One of those being to take a picture of your gear ready to go. Here's mine.
We plugged in ipods and watches and tried to get to bed at a decent time.
Lucky for us our friend got the hook up on a great room at the Aloft Hotel which was across the street from the starting line. We didn't have to rush to get up and take a shuttle to the race so we could sleep in a tad. We were extra lucky because we weren't aware that there was going to be a weather change and the 80 degree weather on Saturday was replaced by race temps in the 40's! We could look out the window and watch the poor people waiting for the race in the freezing cold. Another friend of mine that had come for the race came up to wait in the warm with us.
Did I mention the matching shirts we had made? Since our group consisted of two sets of sisters we decided to have cute matching shirts made for the race. We chose "Sisters Rock Dallas" for our slogan since it was a Rock & Roll Marathon and all. The back of our shirts had our maiden names and then a number to correspond with our birth order. Pretty clever, huh? Here are some more pre-race shirt pics. First the whole group.
Then my sisters and me.
Finally it was time to go downstairs for the 8am race. Another rule - the pre-race shoe pic of our shoe chips.
Waiting at the start we got a shout out from the emcee! It was pretty cool to have him shout out "Sisters Rock Dallas"! We were ready!
The Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders were there to cheer us on at the start.
The starting line.
And we're off......After only about 30 seconds together we all took off on our own pace. Everyone in our group had different paces and would finish at different times. I knew I would be the slowest. After all, it was my first race and I had really slacked on my training. I knew I'd be walking a good portion. The time limit to get a medal is to finish in 4 hours. My goal was just to beat that. I knew I could go about 4 miles in one hour and that you get slower the longer you go so I thought that I could do it. The first 5 miles weren't so bad. I was pretty much on pace to finish in 3:30. The thing about a Rock & Roll Marathon is that at just about every mile there is a live band playing. This race also had cheerleaders from all the local schools everywhere and lots of family and friends cheering people on with signs. That's about the only thing that kept me going when it got hard. And boy did it get hard. After mile five I got slower and slower and slower. For awhile I felt sick to my stomach, then my hips started to ache, and my feet. My favorite sign on the race said "Your feet hurt from kicking so much butt!". After about mile 5 or 6 I couldn't even run anymore (I was doing a run/walk combo before). I walked the whole rest of the way. I teared up a few times during the race. Once when a firetruck had it's ladder holding a flag over the road for us and another time when a total stranger told me that I could do it and she was proud of me. I had to finish. And I finally did. 3 hours, 49 minutes, and 19 minutes after I started. It was a pitiful time. I only beat about 100 people. But it wasn't about beating people. It was about finishing what I started and I did that. As my sister said, I got the same medal as everyone else. I'm happy with that.
My sisters & me at the finish at the fairgrounds.
Bret Michaels was the big concert at the end of the race. This weird guy in the crowd was so funny that we had to take a picture with him.
At dinner later that night to which we walked to!!!
Me & my medal the day after the race at my parents.
I don't know if I'll run another big race again. I can't say never but I'm not in a hurry to do one next month or anything. I am glad I did this one. Even though the race is hard and I'm still a little bit sore even today, I had a good weekend. And I finished something I never thought I'd do.
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