It all started last April… Mer ran the Atlantic City April Fool’s Half and mentioned that she planned to register for the 2014 race. From there, Chick after Chick (and honorary Chicks) decided that they wanted to run too!
Race weekend has finally arrived and we’re ready to tackle hug each other and tackle the half marathon distance.
I’m so excited to visit the Garden State this weekend! I hate to be away from my family, but I really am in need of some girlfriend time. When I can combine that with a race? Well, in the words of one of my favorite Jersey girls, “It’s a good thing.”
My plan for this weekend is to have the most fun ever and try not to complain about the cold. Running wise, I am going to treat the race as an easy training run because I have some shin pain and I don’t want to make it worse before the Nike half marathon at the end of the month.
My plan is to try my damnedest to keep up with the coolest gal I know, Miss Meri. I’m going to push myself, something I’m adamantly against. But I want see what I can do. Who knows, I might surprise myself.
It’s funny because when I think about this weekend, the half marathon is sort of tacked in. “I have six friends staying at my house. And, OH YEAH, we are running a half marathon on Sunday.” I’m more freaked about cleaning and making sure that everyone is comfortable than running 13.1 miles. That’s insanity right there.
Cam and I are sticking together for this race, which probably has her freaking out a bit because we have a time goal and she’s not one for time goals. Luckily, we’ll be together so we’ll be having fun, no matter what! A race with Cam is always a good time – she ran my first race ever with me and we’ve done many more together throughout the past three years.
We’ll be running intervals, 3 minutes running, 1 minute walking. Running on the boardwalk is one of my favorite things because it’s so forgiving (and flat, of course). I’m a little nervous about miles 5-9 because that’s when we switch to the street and I always get a little mentally drained at that point. My goal is that we are consistent and feeling good throughout the entire race!
I should have a better laid-out race plan than the one I’m thinking of just now (which is nonexistent) but this weekend isn’t about running a best time for me. It’s all about spending time with my best girls.
It is no secret that I haven’t trained as well as I should have in recent weeks. I’ve been sick with a hacking cough, work has been nutty and I’ve been traveling. And since the course is flat as a pancake, I know it should be the time to push it.
And I might. I might not.
Either way, I plan to run with Brooke (right B?) and to help to set up friend Kate as she aims for a sub-2 half. And I’m going to have an amazing time with the girls and celebrate Meri’s birthday and her pending marathon on the fall!
My plan for the AC half is quite simple… to not die. I’m only half kidding. My training has definitely been about distance, not speed, so my plan is to not panic about how long it is taking me to finish, and keep reminding myself that I can do this.
I have a feeling that miles 7 through 9 are going to be tough. I’m also pretty sure I’m going to ugly cry and embarrass myself at the finish line.
Aside from getting to spend time with my friends, I’m most looking forward to the medal. I’ve never gotten a medal at a race before, and I want that hardware. I’ve had so many cheerleaders and supporters on this path that I’m really excited about having something tangible to show them.
As some of the Chicks can tell you, I am A Type A Personality. I always have A Plan and when that plan gets derailed…it’s hard. This winter has been the winter of derailed. In November, I ran the Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon. I had high hopes going in, some pretty solid training…and disaster struck at mile 8. I crested a hill, there was a sharp pain in my hip and it was game over. I limped my way through the next five miles and finished, but between the finish and the week being dragged through the park by non-runner people who just didn’t get it, my hip was in a bad way.
To compound that, my return from Florida came with a horrible cough that two and a half months later when I finally saw a doctor (I’m stubborn too) was diagnosed as a rather nasty case of bronchitis with a side of sinus infection. That was some news I did NOT want to hear going into Disney’s Glass Slipper Challenge in February. I finished the challenge (gory details here and here) but I was in a bad way by the end, emotionally and physically. I felt defeated by being sick and defeated by running. The pictures of me actually moving have it written all over it. I was doing a better job faking it mid race. I mean, castle! In the mist! It was a good moment.
So what do I want for this coming weekend? Redemption. I want to prove to myself that I can still do this and that one rotten winter is not going to get me. I am trying to be realistic about my lack of long distances runs leading up to this race, and the fact that I’m not going to be beating my previous times. Probably not by a long shot. But I want to finish this race feeling strong and not like I need someone to carry me to the car. I want to enjoy breathing in the ocean air and the rhythm of all those feet on the boardwalk. Last time I was feeling down about running, like maybe we weren’t really made to be friends, a run on the beach brought me out of it. I’m not quite in that place this time, but I feel like that ocean air might just be the little piece of magic I need to really get back on track. A cool medal and a weekend with friends doesn’t hurt either.