Yesterday I Ran a Half Marathon.

Yesterday morning was my last long training run before my second half marathon in two weeks! (Next weekend we’re doing 7 miles for a taper.)

But, instead of running 12 miles as planned… I just went ahead and ran the whole freakin’ 13.1. I mean, go big or go home, right?!


And would you believe that I ran it in 1:55:47, nearly a full 10 minutes faster than my first half marathon?! That’s an average pace of 8:50 min/mile. Sweet! Here’s hoping I can recreate that come race day ;) The fact that presumably it won’t be 100 degrees and humid like it was during my first half marathon will surely be in my favor!


I didn’t actually plan to run 13.1 miles instead of 12. But during the first 4 to 5 miles of the run, I was having HORRIBLE stomach pain — every runner’s nightmare where you need a bathroom and you need it immediately. I pushed through the first 4 and a half or so miles but then turned off my watch and walked about 0.5 miles until we finally found a bathroom, because I would not have been able to keep running with my stomach like that. So frustrating! Once we finally found a bathroom, the watch went back on and I was back in action :)


We did an out-and-back run on my beloved C&O Canal in DC, but I forgot to compensate for the time my watch was off and turned around at 6 miles as planned. That meant by the time we got back to the car, we were already at 12.7 miles — clearly it was fate and we had to just finish the full half marathon. Why not, right?


I ran with my dad and some of his friends and we kept a great pace the whole time. My dad called it quits at about 7 miles and one of his friends stuck with me the whole time. He’d never run a full half marathon before so once we made it to 12.7 I told him that today was the day and we weren’t stopping just yet :) I was glad to have the company!


I’m so happy my past few long runs have been good — I’m feeling confident and ready for the real race in two weeks!


  • Mile 1: 8:49
  • Mile 2: 8:48
  • Mile 3: 8:53
  • Mile 4: 8:59
  • Mile 5: 9:01
  • Mile 6: 9:05
  • Mile 7: 8:42
  • Mile 8: 8:51
  • Mile 9: 8:43
  • Mile 10: 8:54
  • Mile 11: 8:51
  • Mile 12: 8:41
  • Mile 13: 8:41
  • 0.1 nubbin pace: 7:46 (booyah)

Woohoo! With the exception of my stomach problems at the beginning, I felt great the whole time — my legs were strong and it was nice to do a flat run after all my hilly long runs recently in Chapel Hill.


Like last weekend, I brought along one of the espresso Hammer Gels to eat during the run.


As before, I really felt reenergized after eating this, particularly in the end of the run (notice our times getting faster near the end!). I’m planning on bringing one to eat during the race, too! Like before, I ate half at mile 6ish and half at mile 9ish.

Final long run = success :)


D.C. National Half Marathon — see you in two weeks!

I spent the rest of the day with my parents yesterday (we saw the new Matt Damon & Emily Blunt movie “The Adjustment Bureau” and it was great), and then flew back to Raleigh late last night. I can’t believe how quickly spring break flew by — time to get back to the grind, sadly! It was a nice break, though, and I’m definitely feeling reenergized, even though I’d still rather be on the beach, of course ;)


I took these pictures in Puerto Rico on Saturday morning at 6 a.m. right before Matt and I left for the airport. Breathtaking, right? We just had to say goodbye to the beach and the ocean one last time as the sun was rising :)


Anyway — I’m off to class. Have a wonderful Monday, friends!

Have you ever had stomach problems during a run? Any good stories?


  1. 1

    Gorgeous beach!! Congrats on your new time, you are going to kick ass in 2 weeks!!

  2. 2

    Great run! You’re going to rock the half marathon. See you in DC :-)

  3. 3

    Woohoo, those are the best types of runs– looks like the weather was perfect and you had good company. You’re going to do great in your half!

  4. 4

    Congrats on the long run! You’re going to kill the race. The espresso gel looks like great fuel too. Love coffee flavors!

    And also – wanted to let you know that pics aren’t showing up in reader for some reason today?

  5. 5

    Glad to hear about the great time despite the stomach issues. Stomach issues are my biggest fear while running because I have them to begin with. So far I haven’t had a problem but I don’t usually do runs longer than 5k. The odd time my stomach is iffy I just do a smaller circuit closer to home and run it 3 times if I need to.

    Good luck in DC!!

  6. 6

    those are such great times on the half! I hate having stomach issues when I run, but sometimes I just end up running faster so I can finish and take care of my tummy

  7. 7

    Try the Banana and also the Apple Cinnamon Hammer Gel. You won’t have the caffeine, but the yumminess compensates for it. The Banana tastes just like mashed banana (so it matches the consistency!), and the Apple Cinnamon is like apple pie. Yum.

  8. 8

    Congrats on your unofficial half! I ran my very first 5K this weekend! We ran over two steep bridges, and I actually surprised myself by running the entire time :)
    I think I’m hooked!

  9. 9

    Honey, have I got stories to tell you about bladder problems. Never fails, when I am walking, no bathroom around. Never ever fails. I jump in my car and start to pray that when I do find one I can actually walk to it without an accident. You will find this out if you have over two children. I don’t want to go under the knife, but there are remedies. I enjoyed your vacation and run so much. Thank you for sharing.

  10. 10

    I ran my first half-marathon last Sunday in Paris ! It was an amazing place to run and had gorgeous views! I’m sure you’ll knock your 1/2 out of the park!

  11. 11

    awesome long run! if you can nail that time during a training run WITH stomach issues, you will positively crush your PR at national!

    I had a terrible 20 mile run while traveling for work. It was so hot, so humid and I couldn’t find enough roads to run on so I started circling parking lots and city blocks to make up the mileage. Terrible.

  12. 12

    Wow great pace!! Congrat’s on the PR! I’m sure you’ll make the same time (if not better) on race day :)

  13. 13

    I live in Arlington/Falls Church and would really love to start running on the C&O Trail – all the pictures that you’ve posted of the trail are beautiful! Can you tell me where you normally park when you run the trail? I’ve tried looking online but can’t find any specific information on parking. Thanks!

    • 14

      You can park along Canal Rd – most of the canal locks along the trail have parking areas! Alternatively, you can park in Georgetown and just walk down to the canal, or park on the VA side of the Chain Bridge – there’s a small parking area there, too.

  14. 15

    BALLER!!!! ;)

  15. 16

    AWESOME JOB!!! I love the runs were you feel like you can just keep on going!

  16. 17

    You are awesome!!!

  17. 18

    Awesome job! You will do SO well the day of the half marathon! :)

  18. 19
    Jen Robinson says

    I did a 7 mile run on Saturday and powered through even though I started having stomach problems a mile in! I actually ran faster avg/mile pace than I had been the previous weekends which might be because I was so eager to get home, but I think if I actually have no stomach problems then I will do even better- we’ll see this weekend when I do an 8 mile run! And i’m going to stop by and pick up some fuel this week to test on the run this weekend to see if it will help me or not- I definitely start to drag after 5-6 miles.

  19. 21

    I can’t believe you were just in Puerto Rico for a week and you came back and ran 13.1 miles! That’s hardcore! Did you run while you were there at all? I’m going on a business trip next week and I’m freaking out that it’ll throw off my training. (I’m running the Cherry Blossom 10 miler on 4/3) I’m hoping I can squeeze in a few sessions on the dreadmill in the hotel fitness room!

    • 22

      I only ran once (about 3 miles on Tuesday), but kept really active all of the days! Wednesday we walked like 5 miles sightseeing and also kayaked, Thursday we went hiking in the rainforest, and Friday we hit the gym where I did elliptical/weights. Plus I did some serious ocean wave battling :)

      Don’t worry about it too much – just try to stay active for the most part and you’ll be fine! For me I think it was actually good to have a more low key work to rest my legs!

  20. 24

    Damn. That’s all I have to say. I’m getting so excited for our race!

  21. 25

    I’ve had a few memorable runs with respect to my stomach. One early morning run along the beach, I experienced a STRONG urge to use a bathroom, immediately. I tried to enter the women’s bathhouse, but the door seemed locked. Desperate, I ran to the men’s side, whose door was open, and entered a stall (note that none of the stalls have doors). Seconds after I had squatted down, I heard foot steps and someone entered the bathhouse. It was a police MAN. Wondering if I had broken any laws, I stood up, and tried to explain myself. He assured me that the women’s side was NOT locked, and made me walk over there with him (note that my innards are still churning at this time). Sure enough, the door just LOOKED like it was locked, but when pressed, it opened. The police man left me without any other repercussions, but he did say that he had been summoned to the beach due to a call that there was a young girl wondering about looking lost. This made me wonder if I was the girl in question, as I was looking quite frantic in my quest to reach a bathroom. Regardless, I was thrilled to FINALLY use the restroom, but my stomach still felt upside down due to my close encounter with ‘the law’.

  22. 27

    You’re gonna rock half #2, no doubt! This post makes me wanna sign up for a half right now!

  23. 28

    Wow, congratulations on an AWESOME, impromptu half marathon! You are TOTALLY going to rock the National Half–you seem so ready to go! :) It looks like all of your hard work in training has really paid off. It’s such a treat to read about your journey! I have DEFINITELY had my fair share of stomach issues (read: I have to map my long routes around usable bathrooms!) and they are no fun. Just remember to pee before the race! :)

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