D.C. National Half Marathon success!!!!!!!!!
My new half marathon PR? 1:51:47!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :)
Can you believe that’s nearly 13 minutes faster than I ran my first half marathon less than a year ago (my time was 2:04:03)?! BAM!
I am so proud of myself and all my grad school girlfriends (who were my training buddies for the race)!
All of us rocked it! From the left — me, Lauren, Jillian, Lauren, and Elle!
We started our morning bright and early — the race started at 7 a.m.! Yikes. Thankfully, there were no issues with traffic, parking, or anything!
It was super cold out but they had the DC Armory open for us to hang out in before the race so we were nice and warm! So awesome. More winter races should do this :)
Check out the nerdy sign I created from my “HALF” bib:
Hehe! I was feeling a bit nervous but overall ready to rock and roll :)
Before we knew it it was time to line up at the start! I was in Corral 3, which was sweet because we weren’t all that far back. My girl Jillian was in that corral, too, so we got to start together!
And then — we were off!
I knew right away that this would be a good race. I was feeling good, my legs were feeling good, it wasn’t 400 degrees like my first half marathon, and I was excited to be out on a run in my beautiful DC :)
While my official goal was to finish in under 2 hours, I set a new secret goal to finish in under 1:55 after running my practice half marathon in about that time two weekends ago. I knew I could do it — and I was right!
The race itself was awesome — my new favorite! If you ever do a half marathon, do this one. The course took us all through DC, including the monuments, Dupont Circle, where I used to work along 18th street, Adams Morgan, U Street, Capitol Hill, etc. It was so fun to run through. I made a conscious effort to keep looking around me and enjoying the race and the sights!
The spectators for the race were awesome, too. I saw a bunch of bloggers cheering along the way, ran into miss Biochemista and my girl Heather who were also running, and in certain areas there were MASSIVE amounts of people with music, signs, etc! It was a very spirited and upbeat race :) My favorite sign was one that said “You’re REALLY good at exercise!” Lol.
Here are my splits:
- Mile 1: 8:32
- Mile 2: 8:19
- Mile 3: 8:07
- Mile 4: 8:44
- Mile 5: 8:46
- Mile 6: 8:31
- Mile 7: 9:02 (intense long hill in Dupont)
- Mile 8: 8:32
- Mile 9: 8:26
- Mile 10: 8:15
- Mile 11: 8:31
- Mile 12: 8:43
- Mile 13: 8:02 (!)
- 0.1 nubbin: 7:04 pace
My average pace was 8:32. Wooohooo! The race actually flew by and as you can see, I was able to maintain, for the most part, a pretty steady pace! I was especially excited to bust out that 8:02 pace for the last mile and 7:04 pace for the very last bit — I remember thinking to myself “this is it, Anne! One more mile — time to ROCK THIS!”
There were some hills along the course, but nothing crazy — the worst was the Dupont hill and the others were mostly gradual. I felt prepared for them after all our super hilly training runs in Chapel Hill!
I ended up wearing my Camelbak as you can see and was SO glad I did since that way I was able to skip the madness of the water stops and just GO! Plus, I was able to eat my Hammer Gel (half at mile 6.5 and half at mile 9) with water when I wanted it, too.
What a great race. I really pushed myself and while it was of course challenging, I felt strong for the whole thing and anytime I started to feel tired or slow down I tried to focus on how excited I was to be rocking this race! I also enjoyed smiling at spectators and checking out the scenery to keep my spirits up. :)
Before I knew it, I was at the finish line. The most exciting sight ever during a race!
I sprinted all out and crossed the finish line with a huge smile.
Here I am ecstatic just after crossing the finish line and realizing my time :)
And look, we got medals!!! They didn’t give us medals at my first half. So exciting!
I was also pretty pumped about these fun foil cape thingies they gave us to keep us warm after finishing.
I heart capes. No big deal.
The rest of my post-race time was spent like this:
Eating and stretching :)
What an awesome morning. Just goes to show how much good training, speed work, and good weather conditions (cold weather = awesome for running) on race day will improve your time :)
Also — a big, big thank you to Matt for getting up insanely early, driving me to the race, cheering me on in the freezing cold, and taking all of these photos. He rocks. <3
I’m still on cloud 9 and now off to meet up with a huge group of bloggers for our big blogger/reader meet up!
Have a wonderful night, friends, and thank you for all your encouragement and good luck wishes! I appreciated every single one :)