Race Report: National Half Marathon

Ugh. I don’t want to talk about it. Is that enough of a report?

This is from last year, when my left leg was injured, but I still managed to run 1:51.

I guess not. Well, can you imagine having a race in which everything that could possibly go wrong for you does?

How bad could it have been, you ask?

Intense muscle fatigue from the start? Check. Heavy legs? Check–did you even know you could have legs so tired they felt numb AND heavy at the same time? I didn’t until Saturday.

Stomach cramps? Check. Aid stations that didn’t have water available? Check. So dehydration? Check. (I thought about carrying my own water and then didn’t. Oops.) Such difficulty breathing that you couldn’t take more than shallow inhales because your lungs hurt so badly? Check.

I finished and looked longingly at the med tent as I clutched my chest and hobbled over to get some water. I’m pretty sure I was just undertrained for the past three months and overtrained for the past three weeks–which I can assure is a more deadly combination than you can even imagine. So, whatever, personal worst by a lot, but I ran 13 miles for the first time since December. I’m focusing on the good things, so here’s a list:

1. The DJs at Howard University. The second one played some Lady Gaga at EXACTLY the right moment. I owe him my life.

2. The performances of my teammates were all spectacular, and my sister set a PR. (I’m living vicariously through them.)

3. The weather! It was so nice to watch the marathoners come in without fear of hypothermia.

4. As my friend pointed out, personal worsts just mean you got more for your money.

5. Champagne on Rita’s water ice. Try it.

6. You Belong With Me on Band Hero

7. The fact that, even though it hurt, I ran 13 miles. I’m very lucky to be able to use my legs and my lungs and my heart that way.

So that’s all. I still love this race and look forward to doing it again next year and getting back in to training this week. What can I say, I’m a glutton for punishment.


14 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by itsnotlucky on March 22, 2010 at 10:06 am

    I feel like, around mile 10 of a half-marathon it’s understandable that there be some issues with water availability. A lot of people have gone through, and the volunteers have been out there for several hours. Lack of water at the first water stop for a marathon *and* half-marathon is unacceptable. But 1-7 are all fabulous things.


  2. Some of the stops ran out of water? I was at mile 5 and I’m pretty sure we were fine with water.

    Sorry the race didn’t go well for you. Hopefully that means you’ll rock Cherry Blossom!


    • Posted by lizard151 on March 22, 2010 at 10:27 am

      I saw you! But mile 5 was the low point, so I didn’t say hi. I was feeling sorry for myself.

      I think your stop was the ONE that handed me water. It wasn’t that they were out–it was that I had to stop and wait for someone to pour me a cup at every one. Maybe they all got the water deliveries a little late? The volunteers were definitely scrambling and doing their best, but I couldn’t get water at the FIRST stop. It wasn’t cool.


  3. Posted by Katie on March 22, 2010 at 10:37 am

    Sorry to hear you had such a gross race! But think how amazing the next one will feel!!


  4. […] I might recommend drivers pay a little extra attention.  While everyone else was running the National Marathon (Congrats to those who ran!), here’s a quick outline of what my Saturday morning looked like […]


  5. I remember last year trying to look at the positive side of this race. I missed out on Rita’s Water Ice, but I was able to get a cupcake from curbside cupcakes. I guess you didn’t get one, or you would have had 8 positive things on your list.

    Agreed, I had two stops I missed because they couldn’t quite hand out that many cups. Also, PLASTIC CUPS… ahem.

    I’m sorry you didn’t feel good at the race, I really think allergies are really out right now. I’m really feeling it. I have to say that “airborne” is helping… I’m sorry it peaked on race day. I know you will be back and joining me in Shangri-La soon! 🙂


    • Posted by lizard151 on March 22, 2010 at 4:06 pm

      Oh yeah! I forgot about the plastic cups! Hello! And you’re right, I didn’t get a cupcake at the race, but someone just brought one to me at my desk, and I couldn’t say no. I guess it could be allergies, but I’m not experiencing any of the other usual side effects. I think it was just a bad day. They happen 🙂 It helps that so many others had good days and that I’ve come up with nothing short of a million excuses for my performance.


  6. Posted by Jessica on March 22, 2010 at 5:31 pm

    I can’t believe I missed out on the cupcakes! Hope they cheered you up. Water stops were a serious issue for me in Richmond but the good news is you’ll expect it next time – I think I’ll be pleasantly surprised if I am able to “run through” one smoothly! Rock n’ Roll does a great job with those though – DC should take some notes 🙂


  7. oh no! sorry to hear things didn’t go well (at all it seems! 😦 boo) but i’m glad you toughed it out. some of those issues would have sidelined many people – so give yourself a little credit for slugging it out!


  8. […] About « Race Report: National Half Marathon […]


  9. Bummer about a not-so-fun racing experience. But funny about You Belong With Me on Band Hero. That’s a good one to play! (Cheesy? Yes. But fun!)


  10. […] My leg stopped swelling! I was able to run Cherry Blossom in 1:27:16, and I never thought I’d be so happy to run a […]


  11. […] He couldn’t believe that I had gotten over my injury hump so completely, and while I was tempted to let him think it was a miracle possibly brought on by his intervention, I know full well what happened. As of April, I didn’t have any more races on my calendar. Whereas before, I kept trying to come back in time to do a half marathon–not a 5k or a 10k, mind you, a half marathon!–and shocker, I kept getting hurt. It was September before I could run again after my late-July bike accident last year…was a December half marathon the best idea? How about the one in January? Oh wait, couldn’t do that one because I pulled my calf. Or the one in March where I hit total injury rock bottom? […]


  12. […] I was still registered for my favorite race of all, the National Half Marathon. And there I just completely blew up. Yes, I was heavy, having put on some pity weight the year before. And yes, I was out of practice, […]


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