Saturday I ran my first half marathon. It was amazing. I was up bright and early at 4am on Saturday morning because I was so excited and anxious that I couldn’t sleep. I think watching Revenge and foam rolling is a great way to wake up on a Saturday and a great way to spend the hours of 4 and 5am.
At 6:20ish, I took a little jog down to the metro to get to the start of the race. While I didn’t have to get there until around 7:20, I was super anxious that I would have to wait for the metro, that I would get to the race too late and not be able to use the bathroom, etc. Also, because it was my first race, I really wanted to experience the pre-race environment. The metro was open two hours early for the race (it usually opens at 7am) and it was pretty cool to be on a metro filled with only runners. You could feel the buzz in the air and it was one of the most pleasant metro rides I have ever experienced. When I got off the metro, I walked to the race start with a couple of women from Gaithersburg. It was great to talk to other runners and laugh away pre-race jitters.
When I got to the race, I split away from my new-found runner friends and immediately searched for the Brooks VIP porta potties. My biggest fear about running my first half marathon was not that I wouldn’t finish–I knew that even if I had to walk at points, I would cross that finish line–it was that I would have to go to the bathroom in the middle of the race. Nightmare. When I bought my favorite new (and one of my only) running gadgets, the staff member I bought it from gave me a complimentary Brooks VIP sticker to place on my bib. I am so unbelievably thankful that I had this sticker. The lines for the regular porta potties were long. I only had to wait 2 or 3 minutes for a Brooks porta potty AND they were heated luxury porta potties, which was an added plus, but I mostly cared about the short line,
I took the extra time I had to let those coming out to cheer me on know what I was wearing. I figured that if they were taking the time and waking up early on a Saturday to support me, they should have the best chance as possible to find me amongst the thousands of runners.
Saturday was perfect running weather. It was a bit chilly when I left my apartment but my long-sleeve top and shorts were absolutely perfect. Not too hot, not too cold.
The pre-race environment was bouncing with music and excited runners. Some runners spent their time stretching, others jogged a warm-up, and most of us sat around chatting. I found my friends around corral 10, where I ended up staying. While I was placed in corral 25 (because I underestimated how quickly I could run the 13.1 miles when I signed up in October) and then officially changed my corral to 17 when I went to the Expo, I decided to stay in 10 because I didn’t want to wait until 17 was allowed to run–I was antsy and ready to go! One of the reasons I was so excited was because I couldn’t wait to put THIS guy (still choosing a name) to use. This is the new fitness gadget I mentioned, but forgot to right a post about even though I told you I would a couple days ago.
Look for the Race Recap coming soon!