This was my fourth half marathon, and honestly, it was a lot harder to train for this one than any of the others I’ve done. I’m going to blame the whole going from 1 kid to 2 kids-thing. People aren’t lying, it’s nuts! But after months of training and even getting my sister to come over and watch the kids early on a Sunday morning so I could get in an 8 mile run, finally race day arrived.
Derek had also been prepping for this day, to run the 5K. While pushing both kids in the double jogging stroller. Yes, he’s crazy. We figure combined they weigh 60 pounds, plus the weight of the stroller meant he was probably pushing an extra 75 or 80 pounds. Tough daddy!
The other wrinkle that was kind of stressing me out was the 7 am start time. Believe me, it was for good reason because Saturday turned into a hot, humid day. But I really wasn’t looking forward to waking up when it was still dark, getting myself ready, then waking up a 4-year old and a 1-year old to get them ready and out the door.
Charlotte hadn’t been sleeping the best all week and she woke up at 3 a.m. I couldn’t get her back to sleep and was still awake at 4. My alarm was set for 5:20. I think I fell asleep for about 45 minutes before my alarm went off. Not cool!
But even though I was sleepy, I was really excited! I haven’t run an actual race in a long time, so I knew this was going to be fun.
We got ready, gathered the troops and headed off.
We got to the race site in about 35 minutes. The Lake Country Half Marathon is on a beautiful course through Oconomowoc’s scenic lakefront area. We ran around Lac La Belle, through nice, ritzy neighborhoods, through regular neighborhoods, past corn fields and through Oconomowoc’s downtown area. It’s SUPER well organized, great volunteers and plenty of water and gel along the course. If you’re in this area and are looking for a half marathon, THIS is the one you want to do. I’ve done it three times before and it’s been awesome every time.
Anyway, this year, they were starting the half marathon and the 5K at the same time. Not sure if it was because it was a smaller turnout this year or what, but Derek and I snapped a quick selfie, I kissed him and the kids goodbye, and was off.
The run started and I felt good. The run kept going and I felt good. I’ve been having shin splint issues so I was nervous about how I would hold up on this run, but I felt so good. I could tell I was running slower than I did pre-baby #2, but that was fine by me. My best half time is 2:05, and I would love to run a sub-2:00 half marathon. That will happen someday, but not right now. And that’s fine by me.
My friend Julie showed up along the course to snap some photos and bellow, “GO CHERI!” which was pretty much awesome. Her husband, an amazing runner and my “running coach” came in third overall. UNREAL!
This race seemed to go by really quickly for me. Before I knew it, I was at mile 10. I hadn’t taken a walk break (except for grabbing some water at the water stations), so I was not about to start at mile 10. My goal was to finish this thing without walking.
Before I knew it, I passed a volunteer who said I had a mile and a half left. Really? That’s it? I felt so good, so I decided to pick up the pace. I passed people who had passed me earlier in the morning (the tortoise and the hare, baby! Ok, not really).
Finally, I could see the finish line and hear the music. I scanned the crowd and saw Derek, Riley, Charlotte, my mom, and Craig and Julie. I high-fived Derek and Charlotte, yelled to Riley and crossed the finish line.
It’s such a good feeling to be done with a half marathon. The jello legs. The salty skin. The relief that it’s over. The sense of accomplishment. It’s all great. It’s also great to let your 4-year old wear your medal.
Quote of the day: “Mommy, you were running a long time,” says Riley. True, kid. Very true.