This last weekend was one for the books. My mom and Annie flew into town and we went down to Southern Utah to run the Canyonlands Half Marathon in Moab. My mom had originally planned to run with Kara and I, but she has been battling tendonitis in her foot and has to take some time off from running:(. I wish more than anything she could have done the race with us, but I am still glad her and Annie came down for the party. There will be more races she can run with us in the future. Her and Annie flew in Friday morning, we all met up and caravanned down together. We arrived in Moab, checked into our hotel and went to pick up our race packets. After walking around town for a bit we got some dinner at a pizza buffet (carb loading??) and headed home to go to bed early in preparation for the next day.
As with anyone who runs races I did not sleep very well the night before due to nerves and expectations for my race. I had set a pretty steep goal of finishing the race at 1:45 (8min/mile pace). My fastest half was actually during my second marathon where my 13.1 split was 1:48. I figured I could run this half faster since I wasn't running a whole 26.2...but I was afraid to set my expectations too high due to having a baby and not training as much for this race.
7am came nice and early but I am grateful I got to sleep in that long (10 am start times are my favorite!). I got dressed said my goodbye to Brad and Caleb and met up with Kara, Annie (Bringhurst), and Kelly to catch the bus up to the start. We got there around 8:30 so we had an hour to eat, stretch, and freeze our bums off. Literally.
By the time the gun sounded I couldn't feel my fingers or toes but luckily within the first mile we hit some sun and my body started to warm up. The first 4 miles were a breeze. I got settled into my pace at about an 8min/mile and felt really good. Around mile 5 my left foot started feeling funny so I turned on some music to try and distract me from the pain...I didn't want this to screw up my goal! I think the pain was due to my foot being frozen coupled with the impact but by mile 7 it instantly went away!!! Thank heavens!!! I was so happy and still feeling good so I decided to pick up the pace. I ate some energy bites at mile 8 followed by some water (I drank at every water station) and continued to push my speed because I was feeling great. There were a few hills in the canyon but I was able to buckle down and they didn't really affect me too much. The weather was perfect and the scenery was gorgeous. There was a steep hill at mile 9 but it was short, and right after we were out of the canyon so I only had 3 more miles!
By mile 11 I was definitely feeling tired and my legs were starting to get sore but I knew that I was going to hit my goal and there was nothing that could stop me. When we rounded the last corner and I could see the finish line there was an older man running behind me who started telling me to go faster and eventually was screaming at me to "push it!!" I listened and sprinted past the finish line. I was done. I had hit my goal. 1:41:01.
Brad, Caleb, my mom, and Annie came over and congratulated me before we headed back to the finish line to watch the others come in. Everyone did great!
Once everyone was finished we ate lots of food then headed back to the hotel to shower and go out for lunch. But before lunch we had to get slurpees and diet cokes. Our priorities are straight.
After we were full and clean we drove over to Arches National Park for a couple hours. We didn't really want to hike much so we just did the arches that you could see from the car. I didn't take any pictures of the park, but you can google those. Plus, Caleb and Brad are way more fun to look at.
After Arches we went and got dinner then headed back to the hotel to sit in the hot tub before bed. I slept WAY better the second night. In fact I don't think I moved the whole night. Caleb loved the hotel and slept great in his pack n play.
The next morning we woke up and headed home. Our car got a flat, but thanks to my manly husband who changed it, we made it home in time for church!