Richmond Marathon Race Recap!

Wow. I’m a marathoner. I still can’t really believe it!



On Saturday morning in Richmond, I woke up at 5 a.m., feeling rested but nervous, tossing and turning until 6 when my alarm went off. I had all my race essentials in my suitcase in a plastic bag all together so I wouldn’t forget anything, and quickly got organized and suited up. Matt, my brother Steve, and I shared a room in the Marriott less than a block from the starting line of the race, which was absolutely amazing. Not having to deal with getting to the race logistics, porta potty lines, and bag check? Best thing EVER.

At 6:30, Kathleen, my college friend and one of my training buddies, and her fiancé Zach arrived. Matt and Zach started making some fun signs to cheer us on, and Kathleen french braided my hair, which ended up being an amazing decision given the weather later that morning. I spelled her name out on her shirt in my sparkly duct tape, and ate some toast with almond butter and banana that I had packed from home. We kept an eye on the weather outside our window – raining on and off, and really foggy. Darn. Fingers crossed it would stop. By 7:40, it was go time. The race started at 8; time to head downstairs. Ready as we would ever be!

before richmond marathon

Downstairs, we met up with our fellow training buddy Rachel, who is Kathleen’s future sister-in-law, and Rachel’s husband Will, who headed upstairs to meet up with the guys. The three of us headed out to the starting line. This was it!


We lined up between the 3:45 and 4:00 pace groups and listened to the National Anthem being sung. Almost go time!



And then, before we knew it, they were announcing the start of Wave 1! We were in Wave 2, so we assumed that they would stop us and announce our start, but instead… everyone in front of us just started running, and we realized – whoa! We’re starting! This is really happening!


And then we were off. Eek!


The first mile of the race, we focused on dialing back the speed. Our plan was to keep a steady 9 ish minute mile pace the whole race so we didn’t get burned out. It was hard to not start out fast because of excitement, but we settled in. And just as we settled in, about a mile in… it started POURING.

Fail. It rained steadily for about 2 or so miles, and by the time it stopped we were soaked. One way ticket to chafe-town, please? Thanks.


Those first few miles were probably my least favorite of the race. Between the rain, my sluggish feeling legs, and the fact that we had SO FAR to go, I was feeling kind of blah about everything.

  • Mile 1: 8:48
  • Mile 2: 9:03
  • Mile 3: 9:10
  • Mile 4: 9:10

Just after mile 4, my spirits lifted because I had people to look for – blog reader Rebecca had emailed me on Friday that she would be out cheering between miles 4 and 5 with her baby. I saw a woman and her baby cheering big time for me and knew it was them – such a mood booster. Thank you again for coming out, Rebecca! :) Shortly after, I also started looking for my blog friend Brittany, who said she’d be out around mile 5. It was awesome seeing her, too, and she snagged this fun shot of us as we ran by.

mile 5 richmond marathon

Shortly after we passed them, the 4:00 pace group passed us. My legs were still feeling sluggish, and I remember thinking: “Ohhh, man. There goes that dream…” But we actually ended up sticking close by in their crowd for quite a few miles.

At mile 6, I started eating my mocha Clif Shot Gel and things were looking up. We crossed the 10k timer and heard beeps, which was exciting as we knew that meant our time would be sent out to those tracking us. It helped so much to know that people were following us and excited to see us succeed! I settled into the groove and at mile 7, there was a fun party station with a ton of people cheering. It’s amazing how much a big group of people cheering for you will raise morale!

From there, we ran over a bridge to the other side of the river.



  • Mile 5: 9:02
  • Mile 6: 9:07
  • Mile 7: 8:31
  • Mile 8: 9:01

There wasn’t a whole lot of crowd support on the other side of the river, but I really enjoyed miles 8 to 11. I was feeling good and there were some great views, too. I can’t even imagine how pretty this would have been were it not foggy/gross out!



Around mile 9 or 10, the girls and I were still in the crowded 4:00 pace group area, and we were all feeling good, so I suggested we run around them and try to get out of the crowds a bit. We forged on in front of them, feeling strong.

  • Mile 9: 8:44
  • Mile 10: 8:53
  • Mile 11: 9:13
  • Mile 12: 8:52


At mile 13, there was a fun cheer station, and I remember crossing the half marathon timing mark and saying: “Okay, we just have to do that again.” Rachel said: “I’m not sure if that makes me feel better or worse…” I replied: “Let’s go with better.” ;)

Miles 13 to 15 were pretty unmemorable – the girls and I chatted a little on and off and snacked on margarita shot bloks; we just tried to stick with it and keep moving. Mentally this was a hard part of the race for me because there wasn’t a ton of crowd support, and I knew we still had a long way to go, but our pace was great.

  • Mile 13: 8:48
  • Mile 14: 8:45
  • Mile 15: 8:38
  • Mile 16: 9:08

We were all really excited to cross back over the bridge around mile 16, back to the side of the river where we would be finishing the race. Mentally, knowing we were at least on the right side of the river made a difference!


We were also excited to cross the bridge because we knew that we would see our significant others cheering for us around mile 17! Sure enough, shortly after the bridge, we were back in downtown and I heard Matt yell out my name! They had JUST arrived and almost missed us – apparently the text message timing updates being sent out were confusing and hard to understand. So glad they arrived just in time!


Lol to the “Love, your lazy husbands/fiancé” part! The guys had made all sorts of fun signs (I took these pictures after the race) – I love the “Body Glide application station – Free – Not pervy” sign, ha! And Steve’s pink sign. :) Clearly they had fun with their cheering duties!


marathon cheering signs

Matt raced ahead and got a few action shots of us running by, too.



Around the same time I heard someone else screaming my name and saw fellow blogger Clare, who was out cheering on a friend. So much excitement in one area! The girls and I charged on, feeling re-invigorated and pumped.


And if I wasn’t already pumped enough, seeing this random turkey guy sent me over the edge. How awesome is this outfit?!


I was really excited when we hit mile 20 – such a big milestone, and I knew another round of text message pace updates would be going out. Woohoo!

  • Mile 17: 9:07
  • Mile 18: 9:01
  • Mile 19: 8:49
  • Mile 20: 9:15


I had heard from a few of you guys that there was an actual wall that had “The Wall” written on it, right around the spot where most people do hit the imaginary “wall” in a marathon. Sure enough, just before mile 21, there it was! I got unnecessarily excited about this, and obviously got a photo.


Mile 21 had us going through some beautiful neighborhoods – it reminded me a little of Chapel Hill, actually! I was feeling great and loving the scenery, even though it had started mistily raining on us a little again. Around this point, I ate part of my granola bar I had in my hydration pack.


A few weeks before the race, the girls and I had discussed our race strategy. This was both me and Kathleen’s first marathon; Rachel has done a number of marathons (and ultras) but was just getting back into it as she has a 2 year old. Kathleen didn’t want to be running alone, so Rachel said she would stay with her no matter what, as she wasn’t going for any specific time. I wasn’t sure how I’d feel on race day, but said I might want to break off on my own at the end if I felt really good, so I’d play it by ear.

Around mile 22, I decided to forge off on my own; I had pulled a little ahead of the girls and my legs were feeling great, so I yelled back to them whether they would mind if I went on ahead. We shouted good lucks and see you at the finish-es, and I was off.


Just after heading off on my own, a woman and her husband ran up next to me. The woman said she was a blog reader, that this was also both of their first marathons, and that she had been inspired to sign up when I did! I was so flattered! I asked what their goal was, and they said they were also aiming for sub-4 hours. Awesome! She said: “You’re looking so strong!” And I replied that they were, too! What a fun boost of adrenaline to see a friendly face out on the course. I wish I’d gotten her name, but I finished right with them, so I know they beat 4 hours, too – congrats!! :)

At this point in the race, everything was starting to hurt, but I really couldn’t believe how good I still felt overall. My legs were sore and tired but I felt strong, and mentally I was totally in the game. I couldn’t believe it – I was nearing the end of my first marathon! I was really going to do it – and it looked like I’d make my goal, too, since the 4:00 pace group had never passed me again!

  • Mile 21: 9:08
  • Mile 22: 9:17
  • Mile 23: 9:04
  • Mile 24: 9:08


I kept waiting for my body to totally fall apart, or to burst into tears, or to go totally insane. Everyone always says all hell breaks loose in the last few miles of a marathon, but somehow, I still felt great.

Just before mile 25, I saw Matt and Zach again. Seeing them gave me another great boost of energy, and by the time I hit mile 25, I was totally “endorphin wasted,” as my friend Theodora would say. I was practically giddy. My friend Lauren (who I cheered on in the NYC Marathon a couple weeks ago) had written me a sweet card that arrived last week, which said: “At mile 25, take it all in, for this is where the magic happens and where you go from runner to marathoner.” I thought about that, and about all of you cheering me on and believing in me, and how excited I was that I had made it so far in my running that I was even at mile 25 of a marathon. I could hardly believe it.


At mile 25.5, we passed a fun band, and I took a little video to remember the moment by. Less than a mile to go!!

Richmond Marathon mile 25.5

Passing the mile 26 marker was amazing – I was SO close. By this point, the course had some significant downhill. I was like: “Sweet, downhill, I can totally bust out a fast pace for the finish!” And then as the downhill arrived: “OMG OUCH!!!! MY QUADS!!” Lol. I had to forge on rather gingerly on the downhill – that hurt! I’ve never run so far before that my legs got really sore DURING the race instead of just after – crazy.


And then, before I knew it, there it was. The finisher’s chute. I had arrived!


As soon as I saw that finisher’s area, I started flying. My quads were screaming, but I didn’t care. I was almost done!!

  • Mile 25: 9:04
  • Mile 26: 8:48
  • Last 0.4 mile pace (my watch said the course was a little long): 7:45 (!!)

Shortly before crossing the finish, I heard Clare screaming for me – I looked over and she yelled: “You’re doing it! Under 4 hours!!” I screamed back: ”I KNOW!!” with a huge smile on my face. She snagged this photo of me as I raced by:

finishing the richmond marathon

I took another video as I was finishing, so I’d always remember this moment. It was truly amazing – so many people cheering and I had done it – I was finishing my first full marathon!

Finishing the 2013 Richmond Marathon!


My official finish time: 3:56:48. Wow! I not only beat my goal, I smashed it!


Right after crossing the finish, I looked over and saw Bart Yasso, “Chief Running Officer” of Runner’s World and a majorly amazing runner, standing there cheering people on as they came through the chute! I snagged a photo with him – he’s awesome. :)


A couple minutes later and Rachel and Kathleen came through! They finished in 3:58 – so awesome!


Shortly after finishing, I found my friend Ashley and her boyfriend Brian who were out cheering me on at the finish – so great to see them!

I also found my brother Steve, who said he had had a ROUGH race. He finished his first full marathon in the spring in 3:22 with no problem (insane, yes), and was aiming for something similar this time, but it just wasn’t his day. He bonked hard around mile 15 and said the rest of the race sucked. He said his training wasn’t as good this time around as it was the first. Next time!


The girls and I also found Matt and the rest of our cheering squad. A big thank you to them for supporting us out there! :)


What a great day and a great race, even with the nasty weather. I would highly recommend the Richmond Marathon to anyone thinking of doing it – it was so well organized, and aren’t the medals stunning? I love the blue glass water. The half marathoners and 8k-ers received a smaller version of it. So pretty.


I’m so proud and excited to be able to call myself a marathoner now. A big thank you to all the volunteers and spectators who came out in the cold rain to support us – they are the real heroes of the day! Also, thank you to my running coach Mary for putting together a successful training plan for me for my first full. I think the 22 miler she had us do was key to feeling prepared on race day!

And as for you guys – thank you so much for taking this journey with me. From signing up, to training, to actually doing the marathon, your support and encouragement were with me for every mile. :)


  1. 1

    Congrats Anne!

  2. 2

    so proud of you, girl!!! amazing!!!!!

  3. 3

    Congratulations! So happy for you, and an awesome time. Enjoy the marathon “afterglow” for the next few weeks :)

  4. 4

    Congratulations Anne! That was an awesome recap, an I was getting so emotional when you started talking about soaking everything in at mile 25! I can’t even imagine how that felt for you in that moment!

  5. 5

    Anne congrats!! I absolutely loved your recap. Even teared up a bit during your finishing video. So truly inspirational!!

  6. 6

    Congrats Anne!!!! I’m so happy for you! That is an AWESOME time and I’m so inspired by you!

  7. 7

    I just knew that you would smash your goal :) Congrats!

  8. 8

    It was so fun to see you out there! I’m so still so amazed than you ran so strong the whole way…maybe you’re meant to be marathoner!? more in the future?

  9. 10

    CONGRATS! That’s amazing that you finished your first marathon under 4 hrs!

  10. 11

    WOW!! I’ve been waiting patiently to see this post! I wish I could have been there to cheer you on. What an accomplishment! Congratulations!! Enjoy the downtime for a little while, you deserve it.

    What’s next? 50K? Ultra? or are we going to see a run for a BQ?

    – Tom

  11. 13

    CONGRATULATIONS!!! It sounds like you had an absolutely perfect first marathon, and I’m glad you have pictures and video to help remember the moment and the feeling of crossing that line. YOU’RE A MARATHONER!

  12. 14

    Just got major goosebumps reading this! What a special day. I am so proud of you, Anne!

  13. 15

    Also, I LOVE the video you took finishing! What a cool way to remember it. Plus, you look like a supermodel and so happy. Seriously, that like never happens to people at the end :)

  14. 17

    So worth waiting for!!!! Inspiring, and I am saving this to reread for the future! I did my first 1/2 on 10/27 and am eyeing an October 2014 marathon (which I’d said I would ‘never’ do!!! Lol)

  15. 19

    I rarely if ever comment but just had to say congratulations!!
    Good on you for having a goal and smashing it!! Gave me goosebumps!

  16. 20

    This was so awesome to read! Congrats on a fantastic first marathon!!!! If my first one goes okay, I’ll have to look into this one next :) I was tracking on you the computer and got emails – it was fun!!

  17. 22

    Congrats!!! What a great race recap too! I really enjoyed reading it.

  18. 23

    Ahh — what a great race! It totally brings back memories of my marathon. This makes me SOOOO excited to run another one.

    Congrats!!! It’s always awesome when hard work pays off!

  19. 24

    Congrats! You did an awesome job! Thanks for sharing your journey. I enjoyed reading all your training posts and race recap!

  20. 25

    Congrats, Anne!!! I still remember my first (and only) marathon and will forever. An amazing experience for sure.

  21. 26

    Awesome job Anne! You are SO inspiring, thank you! :)

  22. 27

    Great work, Anne! I love that you took those videos to remember it all! Amazing time and now you are a marathoner! :D

  23. 28

    Wow, you still look so strong at the finish line! Congratulations, Anne, your story had me tear up :-)
    I will be running my first marathon in April, and this story makes me not want to wait any longer and just run!

  24. 30

    Congrats from Kuala Lumpur!!! Awesome recap! Enjoy the Runner’s High!!! :) Marathons are fun, right? ;)

  25. 32

    Congratulations! That’s such an awesome recap and you must feel so amazing right now!

  26. 33

    CONGRATS, Anne! I’m SO excited for you! I was thinking about you on Saturday and I’m thrilled to see that the race went amazingly well for you :) YAY! Hope you got lots of celebrating in!

  27. 34

    Congratulations!! Great recap. Seriously, I felt like I was right there with you!

  28. 35

    Congratulations Anne, that’s so great. Not sure if you saw me at the VERY beginning I saw you and said “Go Anne!” What a strong race you had! It was fun reading your recap and love the video at the end. Sad I couldn’t run the race but love reading these reports :)

    • 36

      Yes, I did see you – thank you for cheering us on! I was confused because I thought you were supposed to be running! Hope everything is okay?

  29. 37

    Awesome recap Anne! It was a great to read about all your training so it was even better to read about the recap! So great to be able to call yourself a marathoner! :)

  30. 38

    Wow! I read every word, not something that usually happens when I’m catching up on posts! Serious congrats! Gorgeous medal! Hope the body is feeling a bit better today!

  31. 39

    Congrats, Anne! Loved reading the recap!

  32. 40

    You’re amazing! Congratulations!

  33. 41

    Congratulations Anne! You CRUSHED the marathon! I too had a similar experience with my first marathon–never hit the wall and felt good the whole time. Funny how that happens. Congrats again!

  34. 42

    Congrats!!!! Such a great job! Loved the videos :)

  35. 43

    YEAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!! You are a marathoner!!!!!!! I loved this recap and am SO happy that you thoroughly enjoyed the entire run. You are incredible! <3 <3 <3

  36. 44

    Congrats MARATHONER! You ran an amazing race! Looks like such a pretty course and a first-class marathon. Awesome!

  37. 45

    Awesome job, Anne! My race didn’t turn out quite like I had hoped, but I loved the course and the people of Richmond were awesome. I’ll be doing it again next year for sure :)

  38. 47

    Congrats! Great recap and great race! Crazy you were under 4 hours your first time. Maybe I’ll be up to 8K next year so I can run it in Richmond. Looks like a great race!

  39. 48

    Huge congrats Anne!! What a great time – loved your recap!

  40. 49

    Congrats, Anne! You are awesome! Glad you enjoyed it so much!!

  41. 50

    What an inspiring post – and congrats! Happy to hear your race went well. It sounds like the course provided an awesome energy from the sites to the spectators cheering you on. I love that about running. You just can’t beat the spirit among everyone.

  42. 51

    So happy for you! You absolutely killed it, congrats!! :)

  43. 52

    What a great recap! Congratulations on having such an amazing debut. Hope you’re recovering well and can’t wait to hear about what you’ve got planned next!

  44. 53

    CONGRATS! I am so proud of you, but I’ve known forEVER – longer than you have! – that you could do this, and kill it! You are such a strong runner, and I can’t wait to see what happens in Round 2 :)

    Also, I think we’re going to make #endorphinwasted happen.

    • 54

      Thanks again for inspiring me to do one in the first place! :) And yes – #endorphinwasted is the best. Perfect way to describe the feeling!

  45. 55

    Congratulations! I love reading your race recaps. You have such beautiful memories and capture everything so well. And I’m amazed you managed to take videos! Very cool.

  46. 56

    Congratulations, and thanks for such an uplifting recap. Would be curious to hear more in a future post about what worked with your training and what you might change for future races. Loved reading about the long runs, but also interested in your thoughts on how shorter runs and speedwork prepared you, along with running 3x week. Am training for my first full (Rock n Roll USA in March) and using what sounds like a similar plan. So glad to see your success!

  47. 58

    Ah! Congratulations! It’s so fun to read your recap and remember feeling very similar things a few weeks ago at MCM (except the sub-4 pace… no where near that!). Awesome job!!

  48. 59

    Congratulations!!! You did AWESOME and it seemed so easy for you! Funny about you finishing that last stretch in 7:45 — my watch says 7:44 for that! But I had a really tough time with knee pain and my miles before that were frustratingly slow. I didn’t meet my goal but I did PR. ALSO, I saw Matt with that “Punch here for Power Boost” sign and chose not to punch it to conserve energy, not even realizing it was your husband! I also had a blog reader come up to me during the race. So funny! I do have to say, the river portion of the race is so much more stunning on a nicer day. Either way, Richmond really is the perfect first marathon and I am SO happy you had such a great experience there!

  49. 61

    So glad your first went so well! How about that rain?! I kept telling myself that it was good for cooling us runners down, but man, my feet didn’t love it. I agree that the crowd support wasn’t the best, but I had a blast. And that turkey? Loved him! I had a great day where I was able to PR by a lot, so I’m loving Richmond right now haha.

    Congrats again and welcome to the marathoner club! :D

    • 62

      I know – I hit some big puddles that soaked my feet for most of the race! Glad you had a great race though – congrats on the pr! :)

    • 63

      I was the turkey guy and I’m so glad that I was able to put a smile on your face! That was the main goal. I think marathons should be fun for everyone; spectators and runners alike. Awesome job!!

  50. 64

    So proud of you! I need to run with you at my next marathon! :-)

  51. 65

    YA!! I absolutely knew you would crush it! I love, love the idea of taking a video at the end… that is so awesome to have. Congratulations girl!! I am so happy for you!

    I actually ran a 5k Saturday in my town. I have been having trouble with running because I got a cold back in October and it is still effecting to me now… Anyway- it was hurting a lot and I was finishing the race around 12:40 and I thought to myself if Anne finished a marathon today I got this covered! :) So you truly are an inspiration.

  52. 67

    Amazing! Congratulations on your first full and the awesome time. Now when’s the second marathon? :)

  53. 69

    This is the first time I’ve read your blog Anne, but you got me wrapped in! Amazing race and amazing recap. Congrats! :)

  54. 71

    Congrats! I’m so happy for you! And in the rain, too!

  55. 72

    Congratulations Anne!! Amazing time!

  56. 73

    I’ve so been looking forward to reading your recap! Thanks for posting it and MAJOR HIGH FIVES to you for finishing a marathon and doing it in less than 4 hours! Huge accomplishment!

  57. 74

    Hugely impressive, Anne! Congratulations! And a wonderful mile-by-mile blog. Thanks/Well done!

  58. 75

    Congratulations! This is such an amazing accomplishment!

  59. 76

    Congratulations, Anne! I can’t wait to see what comes next!

  60. 77

    Congratulations!!! I hope that one day I’ll be able to do it even with my arthritis!!! Really you must feel so proud of yourself! I know it isn’t easy but you did it!! And you’ll remember it for the rest of your life! Memories are treasures ;)

  61. 78

    Congrats, Anne! I loved reading your review since I ran on Saturday too. It’s funny how you can run the same race, yet have a totally different experience. It poured on me from miles 12-14, I could wring my shirt out with my hands!! I started to get so annoyed! haha

    Your training inspired me to try to break 4:00 as well (my previous PR was 4:19) and I totally killed it coming in at 3:43! Thanks for being inspiring!

  62. 80

    Great job!! You’re awesome!!

    I love your recap and those signs by the hubbies are too funny!

  63. 81

    Great race! Congrats on a huge accomplishment!

  64. 82

    Congratulations Anne! So happy for you and love the recap! Did the rain make your shoes heavy? That is the only reason I hate running in the rain – I don’t have chafing issues but the wet shoes kill me! Congrats again :)

    • 83

      Not heavy, just grossly wet! I hit a few puddles that soaked my feet so my feet got some blisters, but it was not as bad as I thought it might be.

  65. 84

    Anne where did you go to school? I went to undergrad with Zach and Rachel. Rachel and I were sorority sisters. Small world

  66. 86

    I have been following your blog for quite some time now – you should be so proud of yourself! So inspiring! :D

  67. 87

    Such a nice recap. Congrats!

  68. 88

    Congratulations!!! Your recap made me tear up, I’m so glad your first marathon went so well! My first half in Philly was a blast as well, I’m officially hooked!! I’m still in the ‘not sure I can do a marathon’ crowd, but who knows, I never thought I could do a half! Thank you for the inspiration!

  69. 90

    Wow what an amazing recap for an amazing race!! Well done!! Reading your recap gave me goosebumps :) I can’t believe how many photos you took whilst running, I think I’d be too scared of sweaty hands and dropping my phone or camera to try. Looks like a very pretty area where you raced.

    I laughed at all the signs that they made for you..especially the ‘non pervy’ bodyglide one!

  70. 91

    Congrats!! How awesome and exciting! I keep going back and forth if I want to try for a full marathon. I’ve had 2 great half marathon experiences that I just can’t decide. ;)

  71. 92

    That’s really fast for a first marathon. I love your race recap. Way to cross it off your list. What an accomplishment! It’s not fair that you look so good after it! :D

  72. 94

    Congratulations! This is a such a great post. I loved reading about how the whole experience is for you! I haven’t been running very long and am not nearly as fast, but I just did my first half marathon in September. (I asked you for tips on hydration packs and race-day eating)
    You’ve really inspired me to try and step it up in terms of speed. I’ve got a 10k coming up next month. I’m really hoping I can get my time under an hour!

  73. 96

    Well done, Anne – that’s a brilliant time!! You can be proud!

  74. 97

    I LOVED reading your recap…at lot of what you were feeling, was what I was feeling/thinking as well when I ran Philadelphia on Sunday. The part about mile 25 is spot on! I think my favorite part of the marathon was the last 1.5 miles because there were so many people cheering and screaming my name (and my brother’s, he and I ran our first marathon together :) ) that your endorphins start pumping. You can’t help but get emotional!

    • 98

      Absolutely!! Congratulations on running your first marathon! Philadelphia – I hear that’s a great race, too. Love that you and your brother ran together! :)

  75. 99

    Congratulations, you are a MARATHONER! Great job!!

  76. 100

    Congratulations on your accomplishment Anne!!!! I’m sure you are still on cloud 9!!! Excited to hear what’s next!

  77. 101

    Anne Congrats on a your first marathon and a Strong finish at that! I see the back of my head ended up in your picture of “the wall”! You were looking nice a strong as you passed me. I had stabbing hip pain that kicked in sometime after mile 18 so I was hurting at that point and had to slow down. After quite a few marathons I have learned that some days you got it and some days you don’t, and you my friend had it!! I also saw the turkey guy about mile 25! Hope to see you out on the roads again!

    • 102

      Fun you are in the picture! I’m so sorry about your hip pain – you’re right, sometimes you’ve got it, sometimes you don’t. That means you’ll have better luck next time!

  78. 103

    Whoop WHOOOP!!
    Your support crew is really somethin’ – that sign creativity could be taken on the road and commissioned for future motivation. ;)

    “but somehow, I still felt great…” <– HUGE nod to the effectiveness of your training, dedication to getting in those miles and doing the mental exercises, and successfully getting from Day 1 to Race Day, then actually sticking with your plan. This is amazing, and very few people can say they "felt great" during their first duel with 26.2 miles. Congrats, girl!

    Now, can we do shorter Friday morning runs?? ;) xoxo

  79. 105

    WOW!! Awesome job! Sounds like you ran really smart. My first marathon was terribly lopsided (too fast 1st 1/2 too slow 2nd!) Congrats, marathoner!

  80. 106

    Congrats on such a great run! First time marathoner and sub 4?! Kick ass :) Especially with the rain and wet course! I hope I feel as good as you do come race day, hoping for a sub 5. Great recap :)!

  81. 108

    So I was the guy in the turkey costume and you got a fantastic picture of me! Glad I could make your marathon a bit more interesting, that’s what I was hoping! I have a post about what it’s like to run in a turkey costume (that was my first time doing anything like that!) Great run!

    • 109

      No way – that’s awesome!! Feel free to borrow the photo! :) Thanks for the laugh. I’m definitely going to check out your post – I bet that was rather uncomfortable, but hopefully worth it for all the smiles you spread! How did you find my blog?

      • 110

        I was kind of curious to see how “viral” my turkey costume went so I just googled Richmond Marathon turkey costume and came across your blog pretty quickly! I’m new to the whole blogging/social media scene so it’s crazy to see so much interaction. It sure makes the world a much smaller place!

  82. 112

    What an awesome race and a great report. Congrats to a new Marathoner!! =o)

  83. 113

    What an inspiring post! I love it!

  84. 114
    Gord pellerin says

    Richmond was my first marathon. I followed u girls for a few miles and was laughing at the fun you were having. I think when we went thru the place where students were out yelling you gals were yelling back at them. Was that u guys? You guys left me early – I finished in 4:07.

  85. 116

    Congratulations Anne!! We seem to have a lot in common ….I just finished my first marathon this past October in Greensboro, NC. I also noticed you went to UNC and I am currently living in CH and looking into Meredith College to become a Registered Dietician. I’d love to get some advice from you on becoming a registered dietician and how you got so much traffic on your blog. I just started mine up. I love your blog though great job!!

  86. 119

    Re-reading this and hoping to channel your Sub 4:00 Super Powers!

  87. 121
    Kevin Koroush Parsakia says

    I just wanted to say had an amazing time! My first full will hopefully either be baltimore or MCM depending on my luck with the 2016 lottery. Thanks for documenting your experience for all of us to read. Hopefully, mine will go as smooth as yours did.


  1. […] you all so much for the kind words on the recap from my first full marathon in Richmond on Saturday! The girls and I are still riding the runner’s […]

  2. […] other news, I went for my first run yesterday since the Richmond Marathon! It’s weird that it’s been less than a week since I ran 26.2 miles – it strangely feels like […]

  3. […] In other news, I spent an unnecessary amount of money yesterday purchasing the digital rights to this fun official race photo from the Richmond Marathon! […]

  4. […] the Richmond Marathon, I decided it would be fun to get another race on the calendar to keep me motivated and give me […]

  5. […] huh? I hadn’t done a run longer than 8 miles since since my own first full marathon – the Richmond Marathon last month – so it felt great to get back out for a longer loop again and I was pleased I felt […]

  6. […] you guys know, I just did my first full marathon – the Richmond Marathon – in November… after saying for years that I’d “never” run a full marathon. I had a […]

  7. […] start of the workout, I actually ran into blog reader Betsy, who I first met at mile 22-ish of the Richmond Marathon (my first full marathon!) back in November! She was with her husband and the three of us chatted […]

  8. […] Speaking of my favorite fuel – if you’re running longer than an hour or so, you’ll need to start taking in some carbohydrates while running – generally about 30 to 60 grams of carbs per hour. The human body has a limited supply of carbohydrates and once this “fuel tank” starts to run low, your performance will suffer. Exactly how much to take in will be based on your height and weight and will also involve a little trial and error, so practice different types and amounts of fuels during your runs leading up to race day and see what works for you. For example, during a 20 mile run I might take in one gel, 2 to 3 stuffed dates, and a small granola bar (aim for lower fiber, fat, and protein bars in this case – opposite advice from normal life)! Or I might have what I had pictured below last fall when I was training for the Richmond Marathon. […]

  9. […] – is in only a few short days! It seems like just yesterday I was prepping for my first full (the Richmond Marathon last fall). Crazy. I’m not sure it’s really hit me yet that I’m running another marathon this […]

  10. […] figured I should go neon or go home. I also taped my name to my shirt like I did for the Richmond Marathon using the same glittery duct […]

  11. […] was in Corral C, based on my Richmond Marathon finish time of 3:56. When I got into the corral, I had to go to the bathroom but the porta-potties […]

  12. […] since I was worried I’d be totally wiped. Last year when I went running the weekend after the Richmond Marathon I felt MUCH more tired… guess my body is adapting! Either that or my legs have given up […]

  13. […] really working on getting my shorter distance run speed back after training for full marathons (the Richmond Marathon and then the LA Marathon) for practically a year straight, so this will be […]

  14. […] gifted this to me (as a gift certificate) for a blogger secret Santa last year and I turned my Richmond Marathon bib into coasters – too […]

  15. […] written about my love for these in the past (while training for the Richmond Marathon, they were my fuel of choice). Not only are they delicious when you’re out there trudging the […]

  16. […] January, I was determined to get back my speed. Doing two full marathons (the Richmond Marathon in fall 2013 and the LA Marathon in spring 2014) had given me a lot of endurance awesomeness, but […]

  17. […] absolutely loved the Richmond Marathon (<—recap) and had a great experience at it – I felt well trained and strong. Marine Corps […]

  18. […] watch (the Garmin Forerunner 225) when I was full marathon training the first two times (for the Richmond Marathon and then the LA Marathon), so it congratulated me on my new distance […]

  19. […] I was training for my first full marathon, the Richmond Marathon back in 2013, I did a similar approach with my two longest runs being a 20 miler and a 22 miler. I […]

  20. […] I may swap out the shorts for my old fave Lululemon ruffled running skirt (which I wore during the Richmond Marathon in 2013) but we’ll see. I like wearing a running skirt for races – makes it feel more like a […]

  21. […] like the first time again. Wow – where to even start with this recap?! (Previous marathon recaps: Richmond Marathon in November 2013 and LA Marathon in March […]

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