Here is a positive race report from last weekend’s Johnny Kelley Half Marathon in Hyannis. Until recently I had not been expecting to do too well. I felt that I didn’t have enough training after my layoff to even approach my best half marathon time, let alone surpass it. Recently however, my hopes had shifted towards the positive, after I had a nice showing in my first ever road 5K. My son and I ran the Women Run with Strivers 5K on Mother’s Day; my time was a startling (to me) 24:58.
Race day dawned with absolutely perfect weather for a half; partly cloudy and temperatures in the mid to upper 50’s. Once again I rose early enough to have a good sized breakfast and hydrate well before heading to Hyannis. This year I was not going alone, a friend from home was also signed up for the half, and my oldest son was signed up for the 5K that runs just prior to the half.
Having something else to focus on while waiting for my own event, kept the pre-race jitters to a minimum. After picking up our numbers and using the restrooms once, we headed over to the start of the 5K, and saw my son off on his way. I started my stopwatch to keep an eye on the time and make sure we could get to the finish in time to see him cross. By the time we went to the car to drop off extra clothes, and got in line for the porta-potties, I started to get nervous that we wouldn’t make it to the end of the line before he came across the finish. Thankfully, the nice people behind us “saved” our spots momentarily, so that we could watch the finish and still take care of business before we needed to be at the start.
Our timing worked out perfectly in the end. We got over to the start with enough time to spare, but not so much that we had to wait for too long. One big benefit of smaller races, is that they don’t require long periods of time waiting in corrals for the start. It was at that moment that I realized that we didn’t warm up! Oh well, the first mile would have to stand in for the warmup, and we were off!
I have to say that it was one of the more uneventful races I’ve done, in a good way. My pace was steady and I even managed a negative split in the end. After about mile 8, I lost interest in consuming any fuel (I had brought my latest trial food, fig newtons). I felt that this wasn’t really a problem however, since I knew that between my breakfast and what I had already consumed, I would be fine with less than an hour left. By the time I reached mile 12, I was still feeling good, I had maintained a good but challenging pace throughout, and now was the time to see if I could push it just a little more. So it was, that mile 13 was my fastest, at 8:29! My official time – 1:55:41, a PR of almost 2 minutes! My friend Tasha also had a good showing with a nice strong kick at the finish!
Overall, it was a great day of running for everyone! I’m now very excited to continue my training through the summer, as I prepare for a fall marathon. I’ve hired a coach to write up a personalized plan, and I’m hoping that the third time is the charm after marathons one and two!