I just realized the NYC Half was my 20th half marathon! That is wild.
It was also the first big race since Jennie was born. My body recognized this and the nerves crept in during the day on Saturday (in the form of nausea). When my plans for getting into the city the night before and staying a friend’s apartment fell through (we were with family all day and I got home too late) I felt much more nervous knowing I would have to drive into the city in the morning. Running and racing is much more difficult logistically when I have to think about pumping. The nerves kept me awake ALL FREAKING NIGHT. I tossed and turned for 5 hours. I tried sleeping in 3 different locations and played Candy Crush and looked at every single Instagram post I have ever made. I kept saying “WHYYYYYY IS THIS HAPPENING” out loud. It was terrible. I didn’t fall asleep until 2:30 AM and my wake-up call was a short 2 hours later at 4:30 AM.
Luckily, I put out all of my stuff the night before so I changed, ate, made coffee and hit the road. I parked at my friend’s apartment, pumped and Uber’ed myself to the start line. I met up with Erin (we ran together) and after a quick warmup and some nervous chatter and selfies, we were off!
Because of the stomach bug that hit me a few days prior, my original race plan (start easy and progressively get to a tempo, finish fast) was nixed turned into more of an easy long run.
Running with Erin has always been easy. She has been a good friend since college (GO SHU!) and running brought us closer together. Chatting through the miles helped the time fly. Before I knew it we were out of the park and at the 10k mark (53:13, 8:33 pace).
It was really nice to see friends cheering on 7th Ave (HUGE THANK YOU TO THEM) as it was a nice pick me up to head into Times Square.
I am pretty sure I said this during my recap of my 2013 race but running through an empty Times Square is absolutely amazing. It is normally so overcrowded that you can’t walk a couple of feet without crashing into someone taking a picture of the skyline or with a creepy Elmo (LOL). I walk through here pretty often to get to the train station so it was nice to take in the scenery without the stress! We sped up during these miles because of the excitement and crowds, I think everyone does!
The West Side Highway portion of the race is boring but thankfully it went by quickly. Erin & I were looking for our respective cheer crews (but neither of us found our people, sad). Before we knew it we were at the 20k in the tunnel (second 10k was 50:56. 8:12 pace) and then up that short but terrible hill and onto the finish (last 1.1k in 5:32, 8:06 pace)!
We held hands and crossed the finish and hugged. Accomplishing something like a half marathon with a great friend is such a wonderful feeling!
Official Time: 1:49:41 (8:22 avg)
Splits by 5k: 26:26, 26:47, 25:27, 25:29 (My Garmin died around mile 10 and I haven’t plugged it in yet to charge).
Before I got sick, the goal was to finish in the 1:46-1:48 range so I am really happy with my finish time. The pace felt comfortable but never hard. I successfully ran a negative split and finished strong. The race was a boost of confidence and I plan on putting in a lot of hard work during the next 6 weeks to prepare for the NJ Half!
Thanks for all of the support (the good lucks and the congratulations), it means a lot!