Friday, March 7, 2014

7 Lessons Learned from a Horrible Half Marathon

Only about 2 miles in to 13.1
My last half marathon, which was my second half marathon was miserable. I tried really hard to be positive… I’m one of those people that if Im sick and don’t feel good I can’t hide it. Well I had major allergies during this half marathon and the week before. I was in such a bad mood and it made a huge difference. 

Because of my allergies, it was so hard for me to sleep. I maybe slept an hour before I had to wakeup for the race. 

Also, (TMI, but) I’ve heard of horror stories of people not being able to control their bladder. And I swear I didn’t go #2 for like a week before the race. I was stressed about it and scared I would poo myself running (I can’t believe Im going to share that… but it’s true. Also thankfully I did not have to go during the race). 

It was so hot. The weeks leading up to the race were nice Fall like weather, then on race day it was like a boiling summer day. There were people laying on the floor and being taken away in wheelchairs. I had to stop running completely at 9 miles. I was so drained because of everything that my body was going through. I knew my limits and if I kept going I probably would have ended up like some others.I am glad I got to walk the rest of the way and get my medal though!

I didn’t eat properly the night before or eat anything the morning of the race… What was I thinking?!!! Also I didn’t hydrate properly especially for the hotter weather. 

Things I learned from my Half Marathon:

1. Attitude makes a huge difference. Go into it with a positive, happy, determined attitude! Visualized yourself running and looking/feeling good and crossing the finish line with a huge smile and pride!

2. Sleep! Your body needs it! It is so hard to sleep the night before the race because of excitement and nerves. I try to wake up a bit early so you it’s easier to fall asleep.

3. Go to the bathroom before the race! I mean, if you can.

4. Hydrating is so important. Drink lots of water and make sure to replenish electrolytes. 

5. Eat. Having a well balanced, healthy diet will help so much with running. Also eat something before the race… a banana, a bagel and peanut butter…

6. Know your limits…. Also start of a bit slower (this helps as well to not burn out quickly).

7. Be proud of your accomplishment of running a race! 

I am glad I got to experience a not so great race because my first one went perfect. I know any little thing can change the feeling or outcome of a race. I am just happy that I can run and enjoy it enough to do more races and learn from the bad ones.

Have you had any bad race days? Or really great ones?

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