Thursday, April 23, 2009

My 1/2 Marathon Experience

The morning of the race I was pretty nervous. I usually get nervous right before a big run but that morning it was like my body knew all that we'd worked for was about to pay off. The start of the race was a little anti-climatic for me. There were TONS of people, loud music and the energy was palpable. But when the gun went off no one around me moved.

That's when I realized I was standing amidst the hundreds of people in line for the port-a-potties.

Fortunately modern technology has given idiots people like me the piece of mind that comes with an individual race time. The chip on my shoe started timing when I stepped over the starting line, not when the gun went off as I stood sheepishly looked around, trying to look like I knew what I was doing.

I casually made my way over to the starting line and we were off!

The first 8 miles or so were breezy. I hit a bit of a wall at around the 9th mile but fortunately that's was where my family was waiting. Zach actually ran with me a few blocks and that was a huge boost.

The next couple of miles were pretty intense but I fought the urge to walk. The eleventh mile was a steady incline to South Temple where we turned for the last mile to the finish line. I ran the entire incline without stopping which boosted my confidence a TON.

At this point, with 1 mile to go, something changed. A really amazing song began playing on my Ipod and I felt a physical shift in my body, like a flip of a switch - AN ENERGY SWITCH. I felt amazing. I felt like I could run for 5 more miles. I felt like I wanted to finish this race with style.

So I began speeding up. First I passed a couple of bigger girls taking the slow and steady route. Then I passed a girl who lets just say looked WAY better than me in her tiny running shorts. I don't know why but passing someone who looks like they should be passing you was a huge rush. I started pushing myself faster and faster. And when I rounded the corner to the Gateway I really turned on the speed. With a couple of blocks to go, amidst the screaming spectators (who I imagined were screaming for me) I pushed myself to the limit and blew past a whole bunch of runners, crossing the finish line at full speed.

That moment was worth EVERY minute of training the past few months. The confidence I now have in myself eclipses so much of the self-doubt I felt before the race. When I started the training I knew I could make it to the finish line but only because I knew other people had done it. Now I really feel like this was a personal accomplishment. I did it! And now I can't wait for the next one.

love, aloicious


nicole said...

LOL you are so funny, ali! and you look so cute in your running gear! also, i think that you are such a good writer. congrats on the huge accomplishment!

Katie said...

CONGRATS!!!! It sounds like you did amazing!! I'm so happy for you!!

PS. You have so much more willpower than I do. And a smaller waistline to show for it! :)

Keely said...

So, did you pee before you went, then, or...? ;)

Holy crap dude you ran a half marathon. You rock.

MO and Larry said...

congrads Ali! Way to go...we love you...Anne and Grandpa!

thc said...

Ali, you seriously rock - you and the Z-ster both rule -

When do I get to take Frankles to his first Real Salt Lake soccer game?