First off, to everyone who texted or tweeted at me after the race, thank you so much. It was so amazing to hit the finish line, pull out my phone to find my friends, and then get flooded with congratulations. It was a tough second half for me and seeing that meant so much. THANK YOU!
Ok so, straight up: I did not go sub-2:00 because my final time at the NYC Half was 2:00:00. Yes, 2:00:00 precisely. I missed my A-goal by 1 second.
In normal times, I'd be pretty bummed about this. I'm a Type A person. I set goals and I want to meet them. And I'd been working so hard for the past few weeks before my calf pain, fatigued legs, and being sick.
But the race was after a week of battling conjunctivitis, AKA pink eye, and a cold, and waking up constantly for two nights in a row (nerves? having a guest? I have no clue). So I'm pretty ecstatic with the result. I didn't break 2 hours technically... but it was by 1 second. It was a PR of 9:34 minutes. So I'm happy!
(3) 8:43 - this was after Cat Hill. I felt strong and it was flat so I wanted to take advantage (and I'm glad I did)
(4) 9:29 - Harlem Hill
(5) 9:23 - rolling hills
(10) 9:11 - SO TIRED.
(11) 8:59 - SO TIRED BUT MUST PERSEVERE.
(12) 9:03 - THIS IS THE WORST. WHY DO I DO THIS.
(13) 9:12 - SO TIRED I MIGHT DIE. ALSO WHY IS THERE A HILL COMING OUT OF BATTERY PARK TUNNEL.
(.19) 7:22 - breathing was basically wheezing, nearly collapsed after passing the finish line.
Now, on to the race recap.
OH MY GOD IT WAS SO COLD. Before the sun rose, the park "felt like 20 degrees." Thank the lord I had those throwaway sweats to keep me semi-warm until the start line. FYI, for those who don't know (like I didn't before this race), the sweats are collected for the Goodwill.
|The gentleman behind me did not approve of my grey-on-grey sweats, apparently.|
I kept myself going at a slower rate to save my legs, although I let loose after Cat Hill on the flat mile for an 8:45 mile. Harlem Hill sucked, obviously, and the rolling hills left my legs feeling tight. I had Sourabh and my friends Katie, Hana, and Sarah to look forward to seeing in between the first and second rolling hills, which again gave me a boost.
|Me, running away from my cheer group.|
I've never felt a wall like I felt around mile 10. I looked at my Garmin and saw that I had 27 minutes to go 3.1 miles. I was so fatigued that I thought I had no chance of making sub-2:00 and that I'd be finishing around 2:03 or so at best.
Keeping my pace up on the Westside Highway was a real struggle. I had to keep pushing myself as my pace went up and then down in each mile.
|New friend Dejuan and me!|
It was so good to have someone I wanted to keep up with, to fist bump, and to smile at. Three cheers for race friends! At my lowest point on the West Side Highway, I'm not sure I could have kept going if not for having someone I wanted to stay alongside and who kept checking in with me.
So those last three were tough, tough miles. I felt so exhausted and thought my goal was totally out of reach (sorry if I wasn't super smiley when you said hi on the course, Ashley!). But I tried to keep pushing myself to make it happen. The last mile was slow (9:12) going through the Battery Park Tunnel and then up the incline coming out of it, but I sprinted for the last .1 miles at a 7:22 pace (.19 on my Garmin, looks like I need to work on my tangent running). To finish with 2:00:00 exactly.
After those last three miles, where I thought I'd be missing my goal by a lot and felt so disheartened, finding out that I'd finished in 2:00:00 felt fantastic (thanks to Abby for texting me with this news!).
So mostly, I am just so happy. A huge thanks to all the friends I saw cheering (including three who are not runners at all and came out just to shout at me AND THEN I MISSED THEM on Chambers Street because I suck). It meant so much to see people on the course!
|Katie and me post race|
|Hana and me -- she woke up at 5 AM to come in to the city and cheer!|