Admitting that I am battling moderate depression felt really good in a weird sort of way. It’s a weight off your shoulders once it is out in the open, and you realize that people don’t think you’re as crazy as you were expecting. But, let’s not dwell on that any further. I would like to thank everyone for the support, it does mean a whole lot to me. This is going to be a wordy post, so follow the jump to read on if you wish. :)
Several months ago I signed up to return to the half marathon portion of the Delaware Marathon Running Festival. I had every intention of training hard and running it well, but then life sort of got in the way and I lost interest in pretty much everything. Through playing soccer (thankfully I paid for that and therefore felt obligated to stick to it), I kept my fitness up a little, but I debated on just completely dropping the race idea. As the weeks pressed on, I realized that I really could not stand to have a DNF on record because I got essentially lazy and disheartened. It would be different if I had hurt myself, or had something really serious, but skipping because I wasn’t sure I felt like it just wasn’t acceptable to me. So I picked back up and figured I’d run it as best I could and just finish to finish. I was even more delighted to learn my sister’s husband was also running it as his first half.
Saturday after my soccer match I showered, threw together an overnight bag, and drove down to my sister’s townhouse in Wilmington. I love visiting them because well, they’re family, and I also get to hang with this handsome guy.
We ventured down to the expo to pick up our packets and check out the vendors. I ended up picking up a Moving Comfort running skirt for a steal ($18!) and a new pair of New Balances for $69. Not that I really needed new running shoes, but I have one pair marked for destruction at the The Color Run in July, and the NBs I got last year I think are a half size too big as they’re the only shoes that give me bad blisters. So now they are work shoes. Anyway…
After the expo, we did a little Home Goods shopping and then had an awesome grilled dinner of turkey burgers and hot dogs. It was food coma city. I made sure to set out my gear before passing the f out.
Sunday morning I snoozed a little before finally crawling out of bed to get ready. My sister’s hubs had been up for a while and I think was a little nervous. I felt weirdly calm and sort of sleepy still. Definitely not how I’ve felt for races in the past. I nixed the running shorts and decided to sport my new skirt. After we were ready it was off to the race start. My sister and her husband’s sister had made signs for us and I was eager for the race to start to see what they had made. Knowing them, it was likely going to involve some silly movie quotes. It was also the first time I’d actually have a cheering section (all two haha) follow us around the course instead of just pushing off at the finish.
When the gun went off, I wished Josh good luck and made my way past the start. The first few miles went by in a total blur. It was partly cloudy and the morning felt pretty nice. I didn’t wear any kind of tracking watch so I could just focus on the music in my ears. I selected three albums for my running list: Baby Anne’s Bad Baby and Bottom Heavy, and Disco Rodeo from DJ Icey. The music selection was absolutely perfect. Heavy bass and breaks make for good running music, btw.
The first six miles were wonderful. Running along the Brandywine River was gorgeous and I felt awesome. Then the second half of the race hit, the clouds burned off and it was HOT. Luckily, I saw my sister and Josh’s sister three times along the route with signs like, “Laces out! GO NERD GIRL!” “Milk was a bad choice!” and “Great Success!” Every time I heard them shouting my name I got a huge smile on my face. The thing about this race is that there isn’t too many hills, but a ton of gradual inclines. It’s tough but it’s still one of my favorite courses to run. I took quite a few walk breaks through the second half and just told myself I would finish and be happy with that. When I hit the big King Street hill, I knew it was almost over. I pushed it and made it across the finish totally elated. In spite of my lows the past couple months, I stuck to it and completed my third half. And, even though I wasn’t expecting it, I set a new PR at 2:00:07. I nearly broke sub-2 and it renewed my love for the half marathon. I was also crazy proud of Josh who only a year or so before hated running.
Happy time indeed! The finishers were allowed a solo beer after the race, I didn’t hesitate to enjoy one even though it was basically like drinking water (read: beer snob).
I also couldn’t resist snapping a pic with the New Balance mascot, NewB!
It’s a giant shoe. Who wouldn’t want a pic of that?
After the race, we showered and stretched out, then made our way to Brandywine Brewing Co. for a much deserved lunch. This involved obliterating a plate of giant nachos between the four of us, slamming down some tasty sweet potato fries, and killing half of a crab cake sandwich. All washed down with a refreshing Leinenkugel’s Summer Shandy.
The race was just what I needed to give my spirits and workout mojo a boost. Lunch was followed by a quick drive home and a long nap on the couch with the kitties. Surprisingly enough, I was okay enough on Monday to play in my all-girls soccer league and we DESTROYED with a 10-0 victory. I guess maybe all the hard work is paying off. Either way, I’m happy and proud. :)
I’m also excited for the influx of bright shoes into my closet.
More on the pink ones in a future post. ;)