November 13, 2011

Big Hit Half Marathon

They say it takes 2 weeks to recover from running a Half Marathon...apparently that's also how long it takes for me to blog about a running a half marathon...

Back in August I had a brilliant idea to register for a Half Marathon on October 30th. It was the perfect plan…I’d be training with the Cross Country team so I’d be more than ready to run. Plus, it started & finished at Slugger Field and ran past all of the sports arenas/facilities in Louisville. Another cool reason to sign up – the age group awards were full size Louisville Slugger bats. I remember saying, “How cool would it be to win a bat?!”

So my Monday long runs turned into my Monday really long runs. I convinced my dad to ride his bike and be my traveling water station along the various 8-11 mile routes I ran around town. I invested in some gel packs and practiced choking them down without losing a second of time (not an easy feat for someone as clumsy as me!)
Side note: I recommend Hammer Gel, Montana Huckleberry. It’s actually quite good! I recommend staying far, far away from anything chocolate or vanilla flavored…yuk.
Then October rolled around and I started getting really excited…and a little nervous. My two main concerns – at what miles should I take my gel & what in the world was I going to wear??? In case anyone’s wondering – yes. It is possible to have hour long conversations…multiple times…about gel and running apparel (capris vs shorts vs tights – tanks vs sleeves & then what length of sleeves?? Gloves vs no gloves……Too. Many. Options.). Not to worry – I figured it all out and remembered to pack my bag the night before the race!

I have THE BEST running group. We met bright and early (except it wasn’t bright…just really early), piled into Chuck’s van, and headed over to the race. A  mile warm up, lots of stretching, a few last minute apparel decisions, some frantic chip & gel pinning, and we were ready to go!


I love the start of the race. So much adrenaline and chaos as everybody lines up and waits for the gun. The first 7 miles were great! I managed to successfully take my gel without stabbing myself with the safety pin or losing any time stumbling around. I even found my parents in the crowd (mom with her camera…trying to time the shots perfectly haha).

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Then came the hill…no fun. Around 7 I could feel my calf getting tight and around mile 8, I was ready to amputate my leg. NBD. I slowed down a little and kept coasting through. No way was I not finishing…plus, I really wanted that bat! Luckily for me (him, maybe not so much haha), Chuck was waiting at mile 11 to run in the last 2 with me. He had to put up with me yelling for an entire 16 minutes (in my defense I forgot I had headphones in & thought I was talking at a perfectly normal noise level :) ). Thanks, Chuck!


The finish was the best part….cruising into Slugger Field at center field, rounding third base, and heading for home. I finished strong and in a pretty great time. Not my PR, but there’s always next race! I said it earlier, but I have to say it again, I have THE BEST running group. I love having welcoming committee at the Finish Line…especially my mom with her camera…"SMILE!” “Mom, I can barely stand up.” “Smile anyway!”


Check out these awesome results ==>

Big Hit ¼ Marathon (that’s 6.55 miles, folks):
Murphy – 38:25 – FIRST PLACE OVERALL. Come and get your bat!
Chuck – 40:18 – 2nd Place overall & 1st in age group. Come and get your bat!
Casey – 51:18 – 4th Place overall & 1st in age group. Come and get your bat!

Big Hit ½ Marathon:
Tim – 1:23:36 – 14th overall & 2nd in age group. Come and get your bat!
Kari – 1:33:39 – 3rd overall & 1st in age group. Come and get your bat!
Kim – 1:44:39 – 20th overall & 3rd in age group. Come and get your bat!

6 runners & 6 Louisville Slugger Bats. I think that now you’ll have to agree with me…I have THE BEST running group ever. 

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