I can feel my legs aching as I'm writing this! Walking up and down the stairs last night and this morning I was thinking, “this must be what it feels like to be very old and have arthritis.” I know I will do everything I can to avoid that. So why are my legs so sore today? Let me explain.
About ooooh maybe 5 months ago, I saw a video of the Disney Princess Half Marathon Run. I thought, “Oh my gosh! That is SOOO my kind of race! Obviously, because I am a princess (this has been one of my many nicknames and I think every girl secretly wants to be a princess) and I love to run. You get to run through the Magic Kingdom dressed up as a Disney Princess, only with added spandex and some sneakers.
Up to that point I had only run 6.2 miles at one time, but 13.1 miles didn't sound too scary. I've never had the thought or intention to run a full marathon, but this half marathon sounded really fun. Shortly after I found out about it I made a youtube video about setting goals. One of the goals I set a goal for myself was to run 13.1 miles and I wanted to do it within 90 days. I wanted to do this mainly to prove to myself that I would be actually able to run in the Disney Princess Half Marathon and also just to set a goal and have something to work towards and stay motivated.
Then I remembered I was writing a book. Whoops! I'm sure I could have figured out how to fit in a training schedule along with working on it, but at the time it seemed a little overwhelming. A few people asked me, when I was getting very close to finishing my book, if I ever did complete my running goal (I'm glad you guys are keeping me honest). I said I hadn't yet, but I still planned on doing it. So, I made an amendment to my goal by extending the time and I decided to start up with training as soon as I finished my book and came home from the Woodstock Fruit Festival.
I want to point out that 13.1 miles might not sound like a lot to some people, but it is a lot to anyone who has never run anywhere close to that distance. I have amazing friends who will sometimes run this much every day for weeks in a row. I find this incredible because I have always struggled with running, although I have seen big improvements over the past couple years. I only started doing it regularly and enjoying it about 2 years ago. Before eating a high carb raw vegan diet I didn't even have the motivation to think about running.
I figured that many first time marathon runners train by running half marathons, so maybe it was okay for me to train by running 6.2 miles a couple times a week (this is the distance of one loop around the lake near my house.) I did this 4 times. Then I decided I was ready. I picked a day. It was September 23rd. Then it was September 24th, then the 25th. Hmm, I seemed to be procrastinating.
“Okay, okay! I'll do it! I want to do it! Why am I not doing it?”, I thought to myself. Alright, the perfect day came and I had no excuses. It was yesterday, September 29th. Did I do it? Yes.
Here is me before the run, super excited and optimistic:
This is about 3/4 through the first loop, about 4 miles in. Feeling awesome like I could go so much faster, but I wanted to pace myself.
I wish there was a photo of my face just after I finished 10 miles. I was hating life at that moment! Thinking about how much my legs hurt and that I still had to run 3 more miles like that made me want to cry. I had to stop for a few seconds and shake out my legs 4 times between about 9 and 13 miles or I may have just fallen over.
I should mention that I brought a few dates with me that I ate during the second loop. Thank gosh! They definitely helped improved my mood. I did take a quick water and date break halfway through. Also, I was running on black top in Vibrams… I'm not sure I would do this again. I think a tiny bit more padding would have gone a long way for me here.
And here I am SOOO happy to be finished but I can't seem to muster up a full smile because I'm walking like a penguin and my legs feel like wood.
Somehow 2 miles into the run I managed to catch my toe on a bridge and scraped it through my Vibram. Another reason to not wear the Vibrams on this particular run. Thankfully it didn't really start to hurt until after I finished running. Sorry if this is super gross for some of you, I thought it was funny.
How would I do it differently next time?
*Bring a few more dates
*Wear thicker Vibrams or sneakers with minimal padding
*Definitely run 8 and then 10 miles before running 13
*And fully charge my ipod so it doesn't die during the last 3 miles!
I'm so glad I did it! My time was about 2 hours and 20 minutes. I'm going to try to make it a once every other month thing if I do sign up for the Princess Race in February. Its a possibility that I'm super excited about. I will also continue to run the 6.2 mile loop around the lake a lot more often now that it seems so much easier comparatively.
Quick reminder for ya'll before I say goodbye! My site was down last week, so sorry about that! 🙁 Everything is fixed and working great now. BUT! This week I am giving 15% off all my e-books to make up for it 🙂 Yeeeha! The discount code is “FRUIT”. So make sure you take advantage of that if you were thinking about getting any of my e-books, there's only a few more days left.
Thanks for reading guys! See ya on YouTube <3