Join me as I travel around the country to fulfill my goal of running a marathon or half marathon in each of the 50 states and the District of Columbia!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Race #5: Suntrust National 1/2 Marathon - Washington DC, March 26, 2011 - Finish Time 2:07:19

That time is unofficial, but no matter what the official one is, I still killed my PR. By 16 minutes. Heck yes. I am so happy today. Not only do I have a new PR, but I'm also confident that I won't actually die when I attempt my first full marathon in a month.
*Disclaimer: This post is really long so feel free to just skip to all the pictures :)

Race recap - Got ready at 5:30 am:

I ordered a cab last night to be at my apartment at 6:00 am this morning.

A slight coronary occured at this time.
At 6:05 I frantically started walking the streets of DC to try and find a cab because I was convinced mine wasn't coming. He finally showed up at 6:12 and said for some reason they were extremely busy (umm sir there are 15,000 runners and their families trying to get to the same place - yes, I'm sure you are very busy). Five minutes later I spotted a couple with bib numbers, on the corner, looking as panicked as I was and invited them into my cab. They were so grateful to me, that they paid for the cab - runners are so nice. The traffic was really bad and the cops started closing streets so we got out of the cab and walked the final 15 blocks. I'm not kidding when I say we were moving faster on foot than the traffic. When I got there I quickly dropped off my bag and headed to my corral at 6:50 am (7 am start for this race).
Runners and Sunrises make me happy :)
I couldn't find my pace group anywhere (I was really looking forward to it because they were all being paced by guys in the Navy..woo!) so I had to pace myself the whole race, which I'm terrible at. I crossed the start line at about 7:20 am and despite the temp being around 34 degrees it was actually a beautiful day with sunshine...perfect running weather.
Mile 2 was a turn right by the U.S. Capitol
Sorry I didn't take more pictures of the course, like the White House and everything, but I quickly found out that I'm not coordinated enough to take pictures and run at the same time. I tried my best to conserve my energy for miles 1-5 because I knew miles 6 and 7 were full of brutal hills. Once we got to mile 8 we headed downhill and onto a flat course and I knew it was time to pick up my speed a little but I didn't want to run out of energy before the end or risk injury before my full so I kept about a 9:20 pace. I was feeling good, not breathing too hard or feeling like my legs were heavy which made me so confident that I can actually complete the Nashville race.

At mile 12 I was ready to be done, but I just kept saying to myself over and over "do not walk. do not walk. do not walk." When I had about a half mile left in the race, my Nike app on my ipod said to me "Congratulations! You have completed a half marathon!" I told it to F*$# off. When I came around the corner just before RFK stadium I could see the finish line. All I had to do was tackle a little hill at mile 13 and then kick it for the .1 part. Seriously, what a$$hole put a hill at mile 13?? I think I grunted a couple times and then I sprinted my little heart out. I might have had a half-smile on my face at the finish line which is new b/c it's usually the most hideous face that says "I am in extreme pain. Someone help." Today's race was unlike all the rest because I was actually prepared. 2:07:19. Boo ya.

Here is evidence that I zone out when I run. I'm usally ridiculously aware of my surroundings. Today during the chaos of the cab/running to the start line/quick bag drop, I thought I lost my bondi band that says "Operation Shrink a Bootie." Turns out it was around my neck THE ENTIRE RACE! hahaha. I didn't notice until after the race when I asked a stranger to take this pic of me and the head band was in the picture!
After that I went to grab my bag and found out I had to cross the race course of the marathoners. I don't know a more cruel way to torture marathoners than making them run through the area where 1/2 marathoners are stuffing their faces with bagels, bananas, and pretzels. Not only did they have to witness this but they were almost trampled by 1/2 marathoners and spectators trying to either get to the finish line or get to the bag drop. See example below:
After I got my bag (and phone) I got calls from my Grandparents and my friend Amy. Apparently I had spectators at the finish line! :) They didn't see me cross the line, but I was still SO happy they came. It meant so much to me that they were willing to stand out in the cold at 9 am on a Saturday.

Verda Jo and Samantha Jo :)
Amy even made a sign...with glitter. I love her to pieces.
Then we headed to a delicious brunch in Eastern Market at The Chesapeake Room.
Holy Cow. This is why I run. That fried ball is potatoes. Nom Nom Nom.
Aren't my grandparents cute??
I know my parents wanted to be here, but my mom sent me this super cute text message when I told her my finish time. I know she was cheering all the way from Florida :)
How is everyone's weekend going so far?
Did you have a race today?
Does your mom say really cool things like "bomdiggity"? ;)

Hope your Saturday is awesome! I'm headed to bed so I can take a nap before TWO birthday parties tonight. I might sleep all of Sunday.


Tara said...

Congrats on your destroying your PR pretty lady!! YOU'RE AWESOME!!

~K~ said...

Great job on your PR! My mom would NEVER say something like bombdiggity! (She also would never text either...) ha! I raced a 5k today and placed first in my age group. Getting new PR's are the bomb(diggity)! (mine was only by 3 seconds though!)

Running in a World of Pink said...

Great job on the race Sam! I had to laugh about your comments to Nike saying Congrats when you weren't done.

I'm with you about zoning out while running. My wife asked if I say the White House during the run. I was totally clueless...I never noticed!

Jess @ Blonde Ponytail said...

How funny you thought you lost your headband, meanwhile it is around your neck! Classic "Wear are my glasses?" move!!

This looks like a fabulous race and I chance to take in the Capitol city! I hope you are having a wonderful recovery day today Sam!!!!

Jon said...

Nice job on the PR! 16 minutes is HUGE!

Lizzie G said...

Sammi Jo woo hoo!!! I wish I had something cool like bombdiggity to say! You'll just have to settle for knowing that I think you're awesome and you runner types make me feel lazy!

Kurt @ Becoming An Ironman said...

Ok... too many thoughts! Too many thoughts!

Most importantly, Congratulations!!

Awesome good Samaritan job letting the other runners jump in your cab with you, I might add a few degrees to your 'perfect running weather,' I am more than blown away by people who can run and snap pictures (mine are full blurs), "Operation Shrink a Bootie" - F'ing hilarious!!, I might have just jumped in and directed traffic for the cop (I'd probably punch the cop if I was a marathoner on that course), and parents who try to be "cool" are the best!

The Green Girl said...

Holy crap, congratulations on a huge PR, girl!

I couldn't stop laughing about your headband being around your neck.

I agree that it was cruel and unusual punishment for the halfers to flaunt around like that.

Jogging with Fiction said...

awesome time! I didn't race this weekend, but I have my first half this coming weekend!

ashley (redonk runner) said...

what a good idea to get a cab to the race! congrats on a new PR. that's exciting that you will be doing the nashville CMM... i really wanted to do it, but my knee had been bothering me at the beginning of the year so i wasn't feelin' confident that i could be ready in time.

i'm hoping to do the half though.

Kyle said...

SAM, CONGRATS!!! You rock!

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