Sunday, May 2, 2010

Race Report: Palos Southwest Half Marathon

running the palos half marathon 2010
shorts seemed like a good idea at the time.
not so much by mile 10.
Back in January (or maybe the end of December), I got the crazy idea that I should run a half marathon. Why, I don't know. I had never done a race longer than 5K, so the next logical step would have been a 5mi or 10K race. But no, 13.1 miles seemed like a good idea.

Well, today was the half marathon, and I survived in one piece. I started off with what I thought would be a good pace that I could maintain, but gradually slowed. Somewhere between miles 8 and 9, I realized I would have to walk if I wanted to finish. So I did. And the water stations were running out of cups. And I was chaffing. Badly. And being passed by the few people still left in the back of the pack with me, including an 85-year-old gentleman. But you know what? I finished.

Official time: 2:48:53, 12:54 pace
Overall: 1,351 / 1,428
AG: 113 / 119

At least I wasn't last, right?

My thoughts/observations on the experience ... it truly was an "experience":

- I heard somewhere (probably forums) that just getting to the starting line is an accomplishment. That was the case this morning. I am NOT a morning person, plus, honestly, I was slacking on my training during the past 3 weeks. So when my alarm went off at 5:15am this morning, and it was still raining outside, I tried to think of every reason NOT to put on my gear and go. But I went. Because I hate giving up.

- I saw Lynn and Jaime Parks! Lynn is in a wheelchair, and Jaime is a marathon runner. He pushes her through every single one of his races. It's inspiring. And he's actually really fast! According to the official results, he finished in 1:27:38, a 6:42 per mile pace.

- About 2 miles from the end, I noticed that my fingers were the most swollen I have ever seen them in my life. It was really freaky. After about a liter of water post-race they started going back to normal.

- I have never seen such a long line for port-a-potties, and I've been to the South Side Irish Parade.

- This might be the first time I've ever had sweat dry on my body and actually leave salt behind.

- There were port-a-potties along the race route, yet I still saw people duck into the woods. Also I think because they were available, I didn't have to pee. I think if they hadn't been there, it would have been a different story. Plenty of people stopped though, even 1 mile in ... those might have been the people that were still in the mammoth line before the race and just gave up.

OK, well now I really should go take a shower. I think I've rested enough that I can go stand for 20 minutes.

* note that I said "first" half marathon ... who knows I might lose my mind again in the future and sign up for another one.


  1. thanks for sharing your experience Maggie! Congrats on completing your first half marathon!!!

  2. Nice job Maggie! Once the first one is out of the way it's easier to sign up for (and run) the second. ;)