My First Half Marathon Recap – Rock’n’Sole Milwaukee

So, on Saturday I ran a half marathon – the Rock’n’Sole to be exact.

breakfast at 5:20 am. WHAT FUN.

breakfast at 5:20 am. WHAT FUN.

If you’re one of those people who says, “Why would you do that? I would never do that,” I must inform you that that has always been my reaction to people who’ve told me they’ve run half marathons.

selfie on the Hoan Bridge...around mile 4

selfie on the Hoan Bridge…around mile 4

Until about 2 years ago when my sister started to peer pressure me to do one with her. So this year, without any more excuses, I finally sucked it up, signed up like, a week before the event, and decided to do it.

view while running over the Hoan Bridge...pardon the blurriness I was also currently #racing

view while running over the Hoan Bridge…pardon the blurriness I was also currently #racing

To be honest, you know how everyone who runs them says, “oh, it’s not that bad”…? Well I always rolled my eyes at them too. And then I did it and with the event just over 36 hours behind me I gotta say, you know what? It really wasn’t that bad. And I didn’t even train properly.

running through Lake Park around mile 8

running through Lake Park around mile 8

This half marathon was only the third time in my entire life I ran more than 6 miles consecutively. I mean, I ran on and off during the semester but didn’t follow one of those recommended “training schedules” you find all over the internet. I did an 8 mile workout two weeks before, and then 9 mile workout one week before. And then I just crossed my fingers and went for it. And somehow I finished in 2:19:06, side by side with my sister, after we ran the whole thing at an average pace of 10:36, and no we did not walk at all!

I should mention that I wouldn’t have signed up for it, trained for it at all, finished it, or paced myself appropriately without her. Having her (and her husband for the majority of the run) next to me during the race really kept me going, paced, at ease, and in a positive mindset. We crossed the finish like side-by-side with the exact same finish time. How corny. I’ll be honest I really didn’t want to run as fast as she did towards the end but I was so determined to have that photo of us crossing together taken that I mustered every last bit of energy in my body and sped up with her final sprint. And you know what? We did it. #sissypower

Then afterwords, we all took smiling pictures and pretending it was the easiest thing EVER.

after!

my inspiration(s)

my inspiration(s)

[but really, everyone was simultaneously high on endorphins and hangry/ holding things from blasting out of their bowels and/or chugging water and chocolate milk and looking hot and sweaty]

Then we all went out to brunch and chatted for a long time. And overall I must say the event was more or less enjoyable and  agood excuse to bond and hang out with some pretty awesome and inspiring people. Considering I was a really angsty pants about it the night before, this is really big of me to say. The course was absolutely beautiful and had great views of the city from the Hoan Bridge and passed many historic Milwaukee landmarks and parks. If you’re into races, this one would be great to check out. They also were great with water/gatorade stations every like, half mile, bathroom stops, first aid stops, and tons and tons of snacks being handed out right after. There was even free beer (classic Milwaukee…).

running by Bradford Beach...near mile 10 or so

So I guess a half marathon is something I did. And it was a pretty fun accomplishment and sort of empowering in a weird way. Like now I look at 15K races I would have never considered even like 4 weeks ago and I’m like “pssht, I can do that!” and it makes me feel good. Running is relaxing and stress relieving for me at times, but I never considered myself a runner. I’m still not sure I do. But I did do a half marathon, and I guess in the end, I did more or less experience personal growth from it.

running by the lakefront towards the Calatrava, near mile 11

My advice for Newbie Halfers:
1. Get a buddy. Brownie points if they have some race experience
2. Eat while running. At least this really helped me. Whenever my brain felt fuzzy or I was tired I ate something and felt better. It got me through! #goglucose
3. Pace yourself. Slow and steady finishes the race. Which is better than overdoing it and then hitting a wall.

somewhere almost done all a blur at this point

Am I saying I’ll be paying to run 13.1 miles at 7am again next Saturday? Probs not. But would I do another……maybe. We’ll see. Life is a journey and I feel like this is a super appropriate place to make a cheesy joke about this half marathon being “just another step” along my way or whatever, but instead I’m just going to stop writing because this new episode of Keeping Up With the Kardashians is SUPER captivating atm. DUECES!

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