Suz's love for COWS + Allan's work with LASERS = one unique blog name! Welcome to our blog filled with race recaps, pictures of our labs, and everything else we share with blogland!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Huntsville Half Marathon Race Recap & Giveaway

On Friday night I picked Allan up from the airport around 6 PM and by 8:30 PM we were in bed. I was determined to get a great night of sleep. I went to bed really early before my 15K last month and I think it helped me a lot. I slept until 6AM on Saturday morning and then I got up eager to put on my race day outfit I had laid out the night before. I donned my favorite gray spandex shorts, favorite blue Nike sports bra, plain white socks that I've ran in numerous times (this will come into play later), my Nike Zoom Vomero+ 5's, my Nathan arm sleeves, and my new navy Mizuno Fleet Feet tech tee. I filled my new Ironman handheld water bottle with Gatorade and ate part of a Coconut Creme Pie Larabar before hurrying Allan so we could leave.



We arrived just before 7AM and the race didn't start until 8AM so I stayed in my hoodie and sweatpants until almost 7:40. We got out of the car shortly after 7 to make a trip to the port o potties since there was no line. I hate port o potties so if I am forced to use one then I am determined to be one of the first in there! With our port o potty mission complete it was back to the car. We watched several other runners arrive and get ready to run. At 7:40 we took pre-race photos that almost always result in a crazy pose or two. I tried to take a jumping picture but it was disastrous!


After running into a few friends and my favorite runner of all, Melissa, who inspired me to start running in the first place, I was ready to go! Allan escorted me to the start, took a few more photos, and after the national anthem and a prayer we were off! Miles 1-3 went pretty well but getting from mile 3-4 was rough (probably because I hadn't run a distance further than 3.1 miles since the 15K in early October). I did start eating my GU Chomps at Mile 3 and I think this helped. The watermelon flavor is amazing! After I passed Mile 4 I settled into a great pace which carried me almost all the way to Mile 6.

One of my favorites!
I think it was this point that we hit the greenway. It was absolutely beautiful! I will have to go back there so I can pay more attention and appreciate everything more. Around Mile 7 there were two people who were blaring music and dancing and you couldn't help but smile as you passed that aid station. You could hear the music almost all the way to Mile 8. Before making the turn to come back I ran into my friend from the 15K. She was running a great race and we chatted for awhile before I took a break to walk. I caught up to her after Mile 10 but she ended up finishing strong over 2 minutes ahead of me.

I like to call this Ready, Set, Garmin!
Back on topic! After the turn I took a couple of longer walk breaks because I knew it would be easier for me to run leading up to the water stop where I needed to refill my bottle and to run after that on my way to Mile 9. Mile 9 was my last great mile. I hit Mile 10 and I was at 1:57:00 but I was also out of GU Chomps and the GU gel I had saved and tried to eat at Mile 11 was disgusting. I knew I could run 3.1 more miles in 33 minutes but I would have to run just under 11 minute miles (which is possible for me). That didn't happen as a blister formed on the bottom of my foot. I had felt a blister start on the side of my foot around Mile 3 and I pulled at my sock thinking that solved the problem but in all reality I probably caused my sock to bunch under my foot and rub a second blister which forced me to walk ALOT in the last 5K (3.1 mi) of the race.

Waving at Allan

I walked more than I wanted to at the end but I knew that I was going to finish ahead of the 2:45 goal I had set for myself. I had a secret goal of running 2:30 and I know that could have happened if I had paid better attention when I put my socks on but you know what they say "Hindsight is always 20/20". Once we passed Mile 12 and I could see the last turn I started to run again and ran until I crossed the finish line. This is the first time I haven't sprinted to the finish line and the last thing I wanted to do was puke on the nice lady that was going to hand me my medal. Allan was yelling for me and taking video and pictures.

Almost there!
Once I crossed the line at 2:38:51 (I thought it was 2:38:50 but they changed it by one second when it got posted online) and I had my medal in hand I found Allan and walked to get my finisher's shirt. Then we took more pictures. At that point I was concerned with pizza and nothing else. We found Melissa and talked to her for awhile before heading inside for door prizes and awards. After 15 minutes of being patient my number was called and I won a pair of Mizuno socks that look amazing! I did find it ironic that of all things for me to win I won socks since the only problem I had during the entire race was my socks. 

Finally!!!

All in all I'm pretty pleased with how my first half went. I'm glad there were no bathroom issues, that I didn't throw up, and that I wasn't dehydrated. My only regret is not paying more attention when I put my socks on. Aside from the last 5K of the race I'm really happy with how fast I ran. I'm proud of myself for finishing especially since aside from my first 10 mile run and my 15K I've never run more than a 5K. 6 months ago in May I started running and I was doing one mile a day and that one mile was a struggle some days. Now I'm a runner and a half marathon finisher with the medal, shirt, and new truck sticker to prove it! Who knows what I could have accomplished if I had actually had some long runs leading up to this?! When I run this race next year I hope to run a sub-2:30 and have a full marathon on my race schedule!

Pretty happy girl the day after!
Alright let's talk about the GIVEAWAY. We are giving away two (yes TWO) FuelBelt Helium 2-Bottle Belts in black. They are both size small which is 27-29 inches according to the label. The zipper pouch is a perfect size for a bag of GU Chomps! After running my first half I know that staying fueled is one of the most important things you can do for your body during the race. There will be TWO WINNERS and the only thing you have to do is be a follower of the blog and leave a comment telling us you are! You can earn bonus entries by tweeting or blogging about the giveaway and letting us know. I'm @Suz4AU0608 on twitter! Giveaway will end on Monday, November 21, 2011, at 11:59 PM CST and the winners will be chosen via random.org.

Here's what you can win!
Good luck and have a great Monday! Check back tomorrow for a great review on our Tommie Copper Compression Gear that is my new best friend post-race! If you can't wait until tomorrow then head over to Jenn's Adventures for her TC review and a chance to win some TC Compression gear for yourself!

59 comments:

  1. Congrats on running your half marathon! Shame about your socks causing problems, but at least now you have new ones, ha! So funny that you won that as your prize. I love that you wrote, "Now I'm a runner..." - YES YOU ARE! Enjoy your accomplishment, wahoo!!!!
    :)

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  2. Congrats on your half!! You look great in all the pics, and Yay for free socks! Don't enter me in the giveaway, it's a good one, but I have a fuel belt : ) Have a great week!

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  3. Great job on your first half! I am a follower! would love to win one :)

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  4. I'm a follower and congrats on your first 1/2 - you did great! I like the shirts!!!!

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  5. I found your blog through someone else I follow. Congrats on your half marathon finish!

    I plan to keep an eye on your blog for race recaps/reviews as my parents live in the Huntsville area and I want to run some races when I visit them!

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  6. I want this belt....but YAY half marathon sounded amazing!!!!!! you look great girl. I'm so happy for you. I hope to do as well as you when I finially suck it up and run my first half :)

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  7. sorry let that first comment count as one - I'm a follower & I'm gonna tweet this right now @spatularunner

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  8. WOW, You did awesome on your firt half girl. CONGRATS TO YOU. Sound like you had a great time. I FOLLOW

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  9. Linked on the sidebar of my blog

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  10. Congratulations! You should be very proud! I can't wait to put that 13.1 sticker on my car :)

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  11. So proud of you girl -- I love that you're reppin' the 13.1 sticker, too:) Awesome giveaway -- of course I'm a follower! Don't forget to check out my giveaway, too, Tommie Copper Compression Gear -- Ends 11/21, too!

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  12. Girl, you give me way too much credit! :) You have the desire and determination to accomplish your running goals and I love the fact that I'm seeing you at races now. You did awesome and I just wish I hadn't been feeling so yucky after the race. I would have stayed around longer if I had felt better.

    I'm so proud of you - you ROCK! :)

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  13. I am a follower.

    Congrats on your first half marathon. Loved the race report. You should be so proud of yourself, and I bet your next half marathon, you will blow that time out of the water.

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  14. I'm a follower!

    Congrats on the half! you did so awesome!

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  15. Hi Suz! Just wanted to say congrats on your race and thanks for stopping by my blog (See Jane Run). Great race recap!

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  16. Congratulations... and now you have great new socks, too!

    I do follow you and size S is okay for me!

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  17. I linked your post to my giveaway sidebar.

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  18. And I tweeted too.

    Really enjoyed reading your race recap and seeing your pictures. You look great after your race!

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  19. Great job on your first half! Such a bummer about the blisters, but you know what to look out for at the next race. Way to go!

    I am a follower and would love one of those fuel belts. Awesome!

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  20. Great job on your first half!! Blisters are a bummer but you did terrific! Congrats!

    (Don't enter me in your giveaway - I already have one. Nice giveaway!)

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  21. I love the race shirt, it's really nice. The race event is exciting and challenging too. Congratulations for a great job well done. Looking forward always.

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  22. CONGRATULATIONS!!! I tried to comment at work this morning and it wouldn't let me! So.. have you signed up for another half yet??? :)

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  23. YEAH SUZ!! Great job! Doesn't it feel so amazing?! Sorry about your socks, hope those blisters heal up quick! I'm a follower duh!

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  24. Congrats on finishing your first half! And you only started running 6 months ago? Way to go!

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  25. Congratulations, Suz!! So glad it went well for you.
    Now I will make my pitch for the Mercedes in Birmingham! :)

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  26. Awesome on first half? Are you ready to do another??
    I'm a follower!!

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  27. follower!!! congrats on your first half! you did amazing and such an incredible accomplishment!

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  28. Congrats on your first half!
    I'm a follower in dire need of a new Fuel Belt as mine is salt encrusted, ancient and pathetic.

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  29. Great job on the race! I can't believe you were able to run a half marathon after such a horrid month in October. Good for you! You are amazing! I can't wait to try the watermelon flavor Gu chomps- thanks for suggesting them!

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  30. Yay! Congratulations! Great time Suz!

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  31. Great job on your first half marathon! You'll totally hit 2:30 in your next one if you are doing that well already.

    No need to enter me in the giveaway - I don't need it. Just wanted to congratulate you on the half.

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  32. Whoo hooo! Congrats on your first half!

    Can't wait till I'm posting my recap next year =)

    One of the first "running" gear things I bought (besides shoes) was a good pair of running socks. I love them so much! Never had a blister problem. Can't remember the brand right now but they were definitely worth it!

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  33. i linked back

    http://www.ericarunning30.com/2011/11/great-things-going-on-in-t-he-bl.html

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  34. Congratulations! I'm so proud of you! Can't wait to read more recaps in the future...you'll get hooked on halfs!

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  35. New Follower! Great Job on the Half:)

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  36. Added a Link on my sidebar:)
    www.bobbie087.blogspot.com

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  37. Congratulations, Suz!! I'm so proud of you!! Of course I'm a follower!! I need to use you as my inspiration to finally run a 1/2!!

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  38. Trying to learn the lingo of the blogging and running world. I'm trying to be a follower. Is there something I have to do to "officially" follow? :' )

    lariofly6@gmail.com

    Larissa

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  39. I posted a link on my Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/permalink.php?story_fbid=234676633266345&id=217325424989179

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  40. Congrats!!
    Follower :) could really use a new FB

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  41. linked on my blog and THANK YOU for following my adventures :D

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  42. I follow you!!! would love a belt like that!!!!

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  43. Congrats on your half!! Amazing job! Good thing you won some socks, huh? ;)

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  44. Oh my gosh, I am so sorry I've been so behind on blog reading, but amazing job! You crushed your goal, and sub 2:30 is in your near future for sure! Sounds like a great race, and I love the shirt! CONGRATS! Your hubby sounds like a great guy, hanging out, taking pictures, and cheering you on....a keeper for sure. :)

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  45. CONGRATS on your first half! Feels good, hunh? :) Can't wait to read about the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th...

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