Tuesday, October 18, 2011

ING Hartford Half Marathon Re-Cap

The moment you have all been waiting for: 
My FIRST Half Marathon Re-Cap!

Can you feel the excitement?!!

I have to say that I didn't plan this whole weekend out too well. I ended up having a show on Friday night (the race was Saturday morning) so I was dancing and running around a stage mere hours before I had to run. But, anyway, I managed to get to bed around 2am and woke up at 5:15am to shower and stretch/warm up before the race. My cheerleaders and I headed to Hartford for 6:30 so we could get some decent parking before the streets were shut down. The race started at 8 so I had plenty of time to relax and find friends before the run. I managed to snag a port a potty that was rather clean (probably because most people weren't at the race yet) and then waited for time to pass. I will be honest, there were TONS of butterflies in my stomach but I was also so amped up! As you may have seen, the local paper did an article on myself and why I was running and it went out the day of the race! How cool is that?!

When 8am finally rolled around, I laced up my pink sneakers (and green compression sleeves) and headed towards the back of the pack. The horn sounded the start of the race and about 8minutes later I finally got to cross the starting line. I popped in both ear buds, cranked up the music and kept my pace slow and light. My goal was to finish in 4 hours, but I was wearing a 3:30 pace bad because I felt like the extra adrenaline of the day might give me some added speed. I managed to run about 3 miles before I had to stop and walk (which is a new record for me!) but I felt good. I grabbed water when I could and continued with my pacing. The course was gorgeous, the weather was perfect and my music was rocking! Before I knew it, I was crossing the 6 mile mark at 1:37:06 (roughly a 16min/mile pace). Not too shabby! I was definitely on track for finishing in 3:30.

By this point in time I had already grabbed a Gatorade and had finished off a GU. I did notice some slight swelling in my hands and fingers, but it wasn't anything major, so I kept going. Then, again, before I knew it, I was crossing mile 9! Where had miles 7 and 8 gone?! I checked my pace band against the timer and saw that I was nearly 30 minutes ahead of my band- CRAZINESS!! I nearly started crying when I hit mile 10 and knew that I only had a 5k left to go. Then mile 11 came and mile 12 and before I could really contemplate it, mile 13 was behind me and I was turning the corner to go into the Finisher's Lane. I had run most of mile 11 and part of 12, but I had slowed to a walk because my legs were incredibly fatigued, both hands were horribly swollen to the point where it hurt to clench them, and I had a major cramp in my left side. As I started into the Finisher's Lane, I amped myself up to start running again and bounded off... for about 5 seconds before BOTH of my calves erupted into charlie horses. Two charlie horses... at the same time.... I though I was going to collapse 100 yards from the finish. I started sobbing and slowed to a limp. I ended up stopping 4 times before I finally crossed the finish because I was trying to stretch out the cramps. It was no use though, the cramps persisted even as the medal was hung around my neck and a water bottle was handed to me.

However, despite the amount of pain that I was in, I still managed to finish my first half in 3:07:25! An hour faster than my goal time and 30 minutes faster than my "I'm going to really push myself" PR time. No wonder I couldn't hold myself upright for almost an hour afterward. I literally gave that race everything I had (and believe me, I'm still recovering from it). I have to say I'm pretty friggin proud of myself though. I refused to give up and I pushed myself beyond my limits. So my hips are stiff and my calves are sore and I completely wrenched my entire left side of my torso to the point where it hurts when I breathe? I still had fun and I can't wait to do another race! On top of it all, even though I went home and rested after I ran, I still had another performance to do that night so I was back up on stage singing and dancing away. I honestly do feel a little bit like Wonder Woman haha.

There's only one down side, I received a letter in the mail in response to the article that was written about why I was running in the half marathon. I came home from work today to find this letter in my mail box:

People can be so unintelligent and cold-hearted. I feel bad that this person missed the entire point of the article and is basing all of their information off of a photograph (which, if you saw the article, is actually a very nice shot). Oh well, I'm not letting it get me down or ruin how proud I am of myself. I accomplished something that I never in my life thought I would do and no one can take that away from me.


Wells L said...

OMG I was smiling and nodding and tearing up reading your recap, but then I read the end and now I'm just sooo pissed!!!!! REALLY - the "author" of that note is a stupid whore (sorry for the strong wording but man I'm fired up now!!!!!). OMG you're awesome. Your accomplishment of a half marathon (let's not even discuss the holy crap you had a show the night before and night of the race . . . because that's a feat that is so out-of-this-world that it belongs on the space station!). Your desire to make your race into a fundraiser is noble and selfless. OHHHHH what a coward to send the letter and not sign it and to be so narrow minded - ohhhhh if I were there I would so totally kick her butt (I was going to choose another word)!!!
You are amazing - you set a goal - you trained - you committed - you ran - you.did.that! You are awesome and I know it! I'm super proud of you and am continuously amazed at all that you have been through and yet remain so dang gone upbeat - I want some of that spunk!
I can't believe miles passed along the race and you were just humming along - honestly don't know what that's like - every mile seems to take me a million years in a race ESPECIALLY miles 9+. You're a rock star!
(here's my middle finger flying high and proud to the author of the note!)
Here's my high 5 to you girl!!!! Way to go!!! You.are.a.half.marathoner!!!!!!!!

Amy said...

Wow girl! You did it! What a great time too. I have to see a pic of that medal. I am sorry it was shadowed by and a$$hole who is obviously jealous of all the success you have had. You are truely an inspiration to me!

Lisa G said...

Congrats! I can't believe that note. It's really unfortunate that there are people like that in the world. I read the article and it was really well written. Congrats on getting in the paper as well!

Stephanie Anne said...

How awful about the letter. Some people are so ignorant & rude.

AWESOME JOB KILLLING your goal time!! I am so proud of you & it was great to see you & your family again! Lets race again soon!

Megan said...

Well I hope you got some other letters too, that were much nicer and better informed. Because you deserve all sorts of fan mail, you're a rock star and you've done amazingly well! Don't let an idiot get you down, be 100% proud of what you've achieved.

Rose (Hacker Half Marathon) said...

Congrats! You just finished a half marathon! That is amazing in and of itself, let alone beating your time goal by so much! GREAT JOB! I can't believe you did a show the night before and after your half - that's amazing! Enjoy this moment and ignore the mean note.

Vanessa @ Gourmet Runner said...

This post created two very strong emotions for me. First, and MOST importantly, conrgratulations! You did way more than just finish--you blew both of your expected times out of the water. You should be so proud of yourself.
As for that note...what a horrible and completely ignorant thing to say! If you can, ignore it, throw it away, and focus on your amazing accomplishment and all the wonderful things you are doing!!!!!

Falon said...

Dude. You're BAMF. Straight Up. Also, I may need to road trip to kick some ass. I bet the fool that wrote that note can't run a half marathon! You are right, no ignorant fool can take away what you achieved and will continue to achieve. Keep your head up girl.

orshadow said...

Amazing job! Inspirational for sure, for this half-marathoner-in-training! :) It sucks that there are so many rude, thoughtless and judgmental people in the world, but it's great that you're not letting you down! The article was fantastic, and your hard work has been motivating for many many many of us! Keep on rockin'!

Anonymous said...

You are awesome! Congratulations!! What an amazing accomplishment. You should be so proud. Forget about the haters - they are just ignorant and clearly jealous of how awesome you are.

kimert said...

Congrats on an awesome race!!! Way to go!


Anonymous said...

Congrats!! That is so awesome!! I only hope that 13.1 goes by as quickly for me in Savannah.... :) That is a really great time!! What a great accomplishment! (And I wonder if the douche who left that note has ever finished a half marathon?!) Congrats again!

Melissa C said...

Great job on your half! So proud of you.

That note is HORRIBLE. I can't believe someone had the nerve to say/write that you to and to have to see that when you finished your race. It made me cry for you right now. At least you read it after and can be all "in your face stupid ignorant person, I DID IT anyway". Don't let it get you down, but use it as fuel for your fire.

Fruit Fly said...

Clearly the writer of that message has never done any race of any kind and is pretty jealous of your accomplishment! I guess you could take it as a flattering note then ... somebody was envious of you and too scared to try something so hard for themselves! So to that I say Go Kristin!!

You freaking killed that race!! Nothing like having a goal and then completely leaving that number in the dust. Fantastic, a HUGE congratulations to you!!

Fruit Fly said...

And wait ... you had a show after and functioned?? KUDOS!! I finish a race and then flop around whining like a baby and eating everything in sight. You are a total badass! Woohoo!!

Suz and Allan said...

Congratulations on a great race! I hate that whoever it was that left that note was so hateful to you.

sugarmagnolia70 said...

just found your blog. Congrats on finishing your first half, and in an incredible time! I look forward to following your training for your next one .

The Chubby Runner said...

Howdy, I'm originally from Massachusetts, but am writing this from the Philippines. I found this blog and the article about your run while investigating the 2012 ING Marathon as a possibility for my first half marathon if I can manage a trip back there at that time to visit family.
I'm a chubby runner, too. I hated sports in school, because, though I was only a couple of pounds overweight then, my coaches would mock me or roll their eyes, blaming my poor performances on weight rather than on the fact that I had no clue what I was doing and they never took the time to offer instruction or advice. I was convinced that I'd never be good, so I dropped out of sports all together.
That was almost 20 years ago. About 5 months ago, I started the couch to 5K program and am now (took a long break over the holidays) about to wrap up a couch to 10K program. I'm so proud of myself, and I want you to know I'm proud of you, too, despite what the haters might say. Haters gonna hate.
One thing I learned in moving here is that we have a lot of our health information wrong in the US. Everything in blamed on weight, and really, weight can be an indicator of problems. However, food and exercise choices have a greater impact on our health than our current weight. When I moved here and saw all the skinny, tiny Filipinos, I just assumed everyone must be super healthy. Not true! Type 2 diabetes, stroke, and heart disease are RAMPANT here, despite low and normal body weights, and it all comes down to the typical Filipino diet (heavy on white rice, meat, and salt).
The farther I get into my running program, the more I kick myself for ever letting my coaches and the other haters get me down. I run. Sometimes I run slow, but I still run.
I've found that I can split the people who have a reaction to my running into two groups. There are runners. And there are people who are skinnier than me who don't run. The runners are happy to see me out running, because they know how great it is. The people who are skinnier but don't run themselves may mock me for running at my size, but they're in for a surprise when the zombies attack and the chubby girl has left them all in the dust. Muahaha! ;)
I haven't poked around on your blog much, but I'm going to. I have one, too, called thechubbyrunner.tumblr.com if you want to come over and say hi. I can tell you your blog is way cooler than mine. I've yet to run a race, so I don't have any cool pictures yet, but it's there. :)