Monday, February 1, 2016

Race Recap- USA Fit's Fort Bend Kia Half Marathon

Another race is in the books! I don't quite know where to start the recap, so I'll just be honest. My legs feel a bit like mush, I'm drinking an adult beverage in bed, and all of that feels pretty good. 

Honestly, the race was a really fun one to complete. I signed up for it on a whim 3.5 weeks ago (probably not the best decision) and I'm very glad that I did. The race was held in my hometown, a couple miles from my folks' house, AND MOST IMPORTANTLY my mom kicked butt and did her first half marathon with a couple of girlfriends. I'm so happy that she got the racing bug and maybe if I'm really nice she will keep finding races for me to join in.

The race was pretty small which can be a plus and a minus. It makes getting there, having enough supplies (i.e. porta potties), and finding your people easier, but you miss a bit of the build up that large races have. However, I may be becoming a big-small race fan after the pretty awesome food, short beer line, and all sorts of extra stuff that came with this race. Not only was the food spread the best that I have ever seen, participants and spectators got free beer, the medal and T-shirt were awesome, but most of all the race also gave you a freebie item (backpack, jacket, or zip  up) and it wasn't a super pricey race! Overall the course wasn't particularly scenic and there weren't as many spectators as I would like, but it was a really fun time and I would recommend it to anyone local. 

So here is how the race went for me. We got there pretty early and it was definitely still dark. The high for the day was 75, so I was pretty nervous about the weather. Normally (for Houston) running in 75 degree weather is a treat, but since it has been so delightfully cold as of late I knew that my body would respond differently (20 degrees makes an impact after a dozen miles) than it had during the training miles. I wore shorts and was SO glad to have done so- even if it was a little breezy while we waited an hour or so at the start line. 

I found a 2 hour pacer and wanted to stick with her for a bit because I always go out too fast. The pacer's strategy didn't line up exactly with mine, so I stuck with her for 5 miles then went at my own pace. I like to stay as absolutely consistent as possible at the beginning of a race before my will power drastically decreases. :) With the pacer, I kept looking down at my watch and seeing 8:34, 8:11, 9:37- and my mental game was having a field day. I should have avoided wearing a watch if I was planning on staying with a pace group (which I know because I've felt that way before), so to make myself less crazy I split from the group. I know she did a great job and got her group there under 2, so the problem is obviously me :) 

My muscles started feeling really great around 4.5 and I was pretty pumped. The sun rose while we were running making the sky have some beautiful pinks and oranges. Andrew, my dad and sister were doing an A+ job with their cheering game and that was great to see at 4, 9, and then end. I probably dispelled more energy jumping around while seeing them than I had the half mile leading up to it. Around 8 the heat started taking a toll and I backed off from my 9:10 pace to whatever felt comfortable at the time. I had a lot of air drumming going on and knew that I COULD be pushing harder, but I just wanted to enjoy the race. That was a big thing for me. Normally I go really hard, feel down on myself when I can't keep up XYZ pace for 13.1 miles, and then just do whatever I feel like by the end. This race I just wanted to enjoy and I did! 

My sister joined me for a but leading up to mile 10, but I realized my pace was really slow as I was chatting, so off I went. 10 through 12 were good, challenging but I stayed around 9:15 and felt that I could have pushed more but didn't want to bonk. Then 12 hit and I got bored. Like a light came on my head and all the sudden I was bored. Really bored. There wasn't a lot to look at, there weren't a ton of spectators, and I'd cycled through my playlist too many times, so I slowed way down. That is the only part of the race that I feel dissatisfied with my performance. I couldn't get my head on straight and so I let my pace slide. I know I could have gotten a sub 2 if I had pushed a little harder on 12 and worked on a fast finished through 13. But I didn't and I knew I wasn't going to beat my PR on this race, so although a sub 2:00 would have been nice, it wouldn't have been life changing. I turned  the final corner and... my iTunes quit. With .1 too go I had no jams and instead of just busting butt, I fooled around with my phone until I realized oh goodness I should book it! Whoops!

My long training runs had me running average paces around 9:05 and speed runs averaged in the high 7s and low 8s. I ended up finishing in 2:03.04 with an average pace of 9:23 minute miles. Not my best, but I'm still pretty happy with it and how much fun it was racing again.

I have 3 bloopers to share with you about some of the not too slick moves that happened during the race later this week, but for now I'm going to become very good friends with my Shakespeare anthology and foam roller.



  1. I am glad you feel like the race went went for you! :) I am always so amazed by your running! :)

  2. Yay for another half marathon complete & yay for your mom's first one! Sounds like you had a really good race despite the short amount of time you had to train for it. Can't wait to hear about your bloopers!

  3. nice notch on your marathon belt!! i would have freaked if my player stopped mid run!

  4. Congrats on your race girl!! Can't wait to hear about those bloopers, I'm sure they aren't as bad as you think! xo, Biana -BlovedBoston

  5. Congratulations to you and to Jan! I often bike that route and for Sugar Land, it's actually quite scenic.

  6. That's awesome! I've just started getting into running, so the fact that you just signed up for this on a whim is totally impressive to me. You go girl!

  7. You're seriously my hero. I think it's so cool that you do these races! And spectators get a free beer? I'll be on the sidelines cheering you on next time.

  8. yayyy to both you and your mom. seriously. high fives all around!

  9. Congrats on a great race! I'm so glad you enjoyed it for the experience and not necessarily for your time. I think both are great (especially when they happen at the same time!) but I have finally learned that there's no reason to let a time goal ruin what could have been a pleasant experience. Oh and congrats to your mom!!!