May 1, 2011

My First Half Marathon

The photos are in the opposite direction I intended, so this will be a race re-cap "rewind." 

This is me currently, in my bed, post Epsom salt bath. The knees are hurting but otherwise I'm in pretty good shape! I just discovered, however, that I left my favorite pillow at the hotel! :( Not cool.

 Several people on Facebook were asking what motivation I had written on my hand--Colossians 3:17 "Whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him."

This is part of the group of ladies that I attended the race with. Many of these are my First Place buddies. So proud of everyone!! We had a blast.

 I guess I will go into detail about the actual race here. I started off in the 2:45 pace group which is a pace of 12:30 per mile. I really wasn't sure how I was going to choose a pace group or if I would even stay with one, but a few days ago, Lesley let me know she would be pacing for this group (2:45) and I just decided that would be a good place for me to start. The whole time I was running today I was thanking God for placing me with that group--it was perfect. Thanks, Lesley, for helping to make my first Half a great experience!

I had been watching the weather all week and rain was definitely in the forecast for today. The race website said we would have the race rain or shine, but lightning could cause delays or even cancellation. This was the first time I had even considered the possibility that the race could be cancelled. The thought of it actually made me sick at my stomach. (Which was a nice contrast to the mental break-down I was having over actually running the race earlier this week.) I was finally able to be at peace last night before I went to bed--peace for whatever would happen today.

I woke up at 4:45 this morning and had my oatmeal. I got myself all lubed up with BodyGlide and we headed out. When we left it was not raining. We got there and it was still not raining. They did give directions for what to do if the storm sirens (tornado!!!) started to go off!!! Duck under a bush, basically. That was kind of freaky. Finally the race began. (YES! No cancellation) The pace felt great. At about Mile 2 the temp dropped (I'm guessing it was in the 50s at that point), it was raining at that point and very windy. The rain let up a few miles later but continued to drizzle most of the time. My socks stayed dry and that was all I cared about.

I had a pretty enjoyable time running until we got to mile 10 and they told us we had to go to the police station and wait out the storm unless we could finish in 20 minutes. 5K in 20 minutes? I like to dream big but even I knew that was impossible. The race had been postponed. Ugh. So we started walking off the course and all of a sudden someone in our group looked back and saw some people keep going. Lesley quickly took a vote and we all decided to go for it. WHoHOO!! Off we went back on course! I was running with a friend named Christi at that point (We used to live in the same town and randomly ran into each other at the race and were running in the same pace group!). She took off running fast and I was right beside her! I guess we were trying to outrun the storm. Well, that didn't work out for us because just a little bit later we came up to a pavilion where they made us stop, AGAIN! For real this time. (Not.)

So we were in the pavilion and it was said by someone we would be there for 30 minutes. At this point I was kind of discouraged. I mean, I didn't train for 3 months so I would run 10 miles. I wanted to run a HALF MARATHON and I wanted to do it all without stopping. But I know that life is not perfect and so I pulled myself together and tried to get positive. I called my other friend Kristi (pictured later) who had already finished the 5K. I was telling her what was going on when someone yelled "We CAN START!" So I had to put all my crap (excuse me) back on and off we went. This was for real!! I was about to complete the race. The bad thing was the little break (maybe 5 min? Not sure) was just enough time for my muscles to think I was done. They were not happy when I told them "We are SO not done, muscles!" But they did submit to my demands and we finished! Whoo-hoo! I am a HALF MARATHON finisher!!


 With my Mom who took 3rd Place in her division for the 10K! She said she was praying for me during her whole race. I love her! She is my hero.

 Lindsey and Me--Half Marathon Finishers!

Kristi ran the 5K and got a new personal best! So proud of you!

This is an unnamed lady;) who also ran the 5K and set a new personal best! Super proud of YOU too!

 This is part of the pace group I ran with. Lesley, one of the pacers, is on the far left. Again--many thanks to this lady. I LOVED having someone to set the pace for me. Very relaxing.

 We went out to eat last night and the landscaping was so pretty that we just had to take some pictures;) 

 I enjoy taking pictures in bathroom mirrors, what can I say?

  So that's it. Half Marathon, check!

Thank you all for thinking of me, praying for me and cheering me on with your comments and support. You will never know what it means to this girl. I love ya'll!

Some additional thoughts regarding my 1st Half


Victoria said...

Massive congratulation for completing your first half marathon, what an achievement, you should be so proud of your accomplishment and the inspiration you are showing others.

xx said...

Congratulations Keely!! So Inspiring :) I cannot wait to run my own Half Marathon! You are an inspiration.

Stacey said...

Woo-hoo! Way to go! You did it! I have been thinking about you and praying for you. So glad to hear the update.

LauraLynne said...

I am so over the moon for you! I finished one half marathon 2 years ago and another last summer. Now I need to make a post baby plan for one next spring. You inspire me, thank you!

Randee and Angie said...

Great race review. I ran today also, and the weather was definitely interesting. Hey, and I just happen to know Norma in your picture. She went to the same high school I did. Small world!

ThunderThighs said...

Yay for you!!! You are amazing!! Congrats on finishing the race, and at such a great pace! That's so awesome! And your pics are so nice, you are gorgeous!! I would look like h-e-double-hockey-sticks if I just got done running 13 miles!! So proud of you!!! I've been following your blog for over a year and you have changed so much. You are truly a great motivation to us all!!!! Thank you!!!!!!!!!

Lily Fluffbottom said...

Congratulations! I'm so proud of you for finishing! I'm sorry the weather got in the way a little, but not entirely! That's the important part! Good job!

Can do mom said...

Congratulations, Keelie! I knew you could do it! :) Even with all the weather obstacles, you persevered.

Way to go!!!

Kelly said...

awesome awesome AWESOME ! This post gave me goosebumps! You are a star! A bright shiny star! Congrats on your half marathon !

Taylor Allison Olivia Arrington said...


and congrats on the race so excited for you! xoxo

Dawnya said...

This is awesome!!! Congrats on completing your first 1/2 marathon. You should be proud of yourself.

SkinnyGirlSetFree said...

Way to go, sunshine! I'm so proud of you! :) I was thinking of you today! Take care of those achy knees!

Sarah G said...


MizFit said...


Lucy said...


Lesley @ said...

Yeah! I'm so happy I got to be part of your first half experience!!! Wasn't ideal conditions, but we plowed through anyhow. Congratulations Half-marathoner!!!