Glass City Half Marathon Race Recap

So this morning was the Glass City Marathon.  I had signed up for the Half all the way back in August, before my wedding, before my fractured foot, everything.  My cousin (in law) Danielle was set to run with me, she had also signed up.  So this was the goal race before the Flying Pig entered my life. 

So even though I was not specifically training for this race, it was pretty close to what I was doing this weekend as part of my taper, so I just planned on sticking with the race and running it.  After all, this race was in my hometown and was going to be a nice flat, fast course.

I was already in Toledo, I was up there for Rachel's shower (recap of this tomorrow) which I threw.  I hit the expo that morning before the shower, which was a pretty good expo for the fact that it is not as big of a race as some of the others that I have been to (like the Heart Mini!)  So after the shower we hung out at my mom's house.  My dad came over and both of my brothers for my brother Matt's birthday, and I was busy taking "carb-ing up" seriously with some baked potato soup.  It was awesome. 

Since J had gone to bed really early on Friday night, leaving me up with the dogs, I decided that it was my turn last night, and went up to bed early.  I just laid there, trying to get my head in the right place for the morning.  My mom had some clif bars, so I had that planned for my breakfast, and I got out all of my gear for the morning, including a fleece that had been in my mom's basement since I was in high school.  I was going to wear that for the beginning of the race because I would not feel bad tossing it a few miles in when I was too warm. 

My alarm went off at quarter to 6 and I got up to take care of the dogs before the race.  They both went outside and I ate my clif bar, and I headed back up to get dressed for the race.  I got into my tights, got my Hudy shirt on, wore one of the new sports bras that I got last week, and body glided in various places.  I wanted to be on the road by 615 at the latest, figuring it would take 15 minutes to get over to the University and I could be starting to warm up around 630, which would have me feeling pretty good afterward. 

Unfortunately, EVERYONE was trying to get to the University and even though there was a cop at the insection where you entered campus, he was not doing anything.  So it was a bit after 630 when I got there.  I thought about going into Savage Hall to use the restroom, but I was starting to get a little anxious about how long it took me to get parked that I did not want to miss the start!  So I kind of had to go to the bathroom, but I figured it would be fine.

I did not even wear my garmin to the race because I did not want to worry about my time or anything for this race.  Since it was a training run and the "real" race is 2 weeks from now, I didn't want to cause myself any worry with my running or anything.  I just wanted to run the race because I said that I would, and that's it. 

So when it started I was in a group of people that I knew.  There were lots of high school friends and relatives all hanging out with the 9 min/mile pace group.  I had set myself up there, and figured I would stay there as long as I could.  And if I couldn't keep up, no big deal. 

The gun went off and away we went!  With no garmin, I had very little way to tell how fast I was going.  I had set my twitter account up with my bib number so it would post where I was at certain mile markers.  After about 1 mile, I took off the fleece and tossed it into the grass.  I am pretty sure that all of these things god picked up by goodwill, based on the goodwill truck I saw full of hoodies and gloves on campus after the race, so that made me feel pretty good too. 

At the 2 mile markers (and the first water station) I stopped at the port-o-lets to take care of what I was too nervous to do before the race, and dropped my gloves at that point.  I know I lost a few minutes at that time, but I have no idea how many.  When I came out of the bathroom though, I felt re-energized and raced for a little while to try and get back with my "group" which I honestly did not find again. 

Miles 3-7 were through the neighborhoods of Ottawa Hills, and we ran past this huge house with a big stone gate and stuff that I remember going to a party at when I was in college.  It was at this kid Tim's house after a show.  What a house!  There were lots of people hanging out in their lawn chairs at the ends of the driveways.  They were definitely helpful along the course. 

We then crossed the street over to Wildwood Metropark, the same park that I ran my 13 mile solo run at.  We ran through the park over some of the trails there and up to the manor house.  It was scenic and there were a lot of people in the park, which was nice.  As we ran out to the bike trail, I saw my Aunt Cindy sitting on a picnic bench and yelled to her as I ran by and she cheered for me a little.  The half and full split once we got to the bike trail, with us headed back toward the University. 

The bike trail portion of the race was nice and fast and flat, but it wasn't too exciting.  There were trees on both sides of us.  There was the occasional group of people, but not too many.  Once we got back on campus though to cover the last mile and a half of our race, things got much more exciting with a lot more people!  My two cousins, Rachel and Becky, snuck up behind me (I had passed them around mile 10 when they stopped for a bathroom break!) and we agreed to finish the race together, all three of us.

So we did.  And all three of us crossed the finish line in under 2 hours.  And I felt amazing.  I am so glad that we finished the race together, and that I got myself a shiny new PR without feeling like I was pushing myself too much!  How amazing!

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