With very little run training behind me, I was surprisingly extremely calm the day before and before the race (which was nice!!!).
With a 5am wake up call and the run starting at 8:30am, I didn't eat anything before the race, I just had some chilled organic mint tea I had made the night before (I just steep dried mint leaves with dried whole stevia leaf, drain and put in the fridge... Mmm so good and refreshingl!!). Then I travelled by bus and tram to the starting line in the country outskirts of the city. Met an awesome girl around my age named Clara who was also doing the half marathon, and it was nice to have some companionship before the race!
I had put down my predicted arrival time as 2:00, and although I wanted to go under 2h I wanted a safety margin. The gun went off and off we went!!! There were so many runners (nearly 4000 of us!) that it took a while to get to and past the starting gate but once through everyone took there pace and rhythm and it was great! The first 10k went by surprisingly fast and I found I was always near the 1h55 pacer so had high hopes of going under 2h! ;)
Around the 15k mark is when things started to get a little bit rough, and then in until the end I swear I felt like I could have stopped any second! I didn't have any music to distract me, because my iPod malfunctioned even before the race began! But I am really very grateful for this because I got to work even harder on the mental aspect and that's what I'll need for the Ironman!!!!
At every aid station I poured water over my head which helped me stay cool and fresh, and just drank water. My legs felt strong the whole way and I didn't feel or want to eat anything (they had - unripe ;P - bananas) for fear of getting stomach issues. The only problem I did have was that sometimes the right side if my hip felt out of alignenement, so I definitely have to get that looked into before the Ironman 70.3 in June!
The last 5k were probably the hardest for me, but amazingly 2 awesome friends showed up near the end with about 4km to cheer me on which gave me a HUUUGE boost, especially because I wasn't expecting to see anyone! And perfect timing too! So grateful!
Finding that magic last reserve, I sprinted to the end to the finish line feeling fantastic, but the minute I stopped BAM, lactate acid rushed to the legs! And from then on I had to resort to hobbling... All the way to the massage tent where they made it all better ;) Did some cheering with a friend to the people finishing the full marathon (they started later) - so amazing to watch!!!! At that time, people were coming in around the 3:15-3:30 mark but most looked so incredibly fresh!!! Incredible!
Walked 6km back home through parks in the beautiful sun, and felt that actually helped stretch out my muscles, especially my calves.
Found out I came 100th in my age group of 400, and 451st out of 1500 women overall.
All in all, very happy and I love my medal ;D I definitely think I will sleep well tonight!
Well, we will see how I will run 21.1km after swimming 2km and biking 90km up a mountain in a month!!!!!!