Third Time’s the Charm

Last weekend I ran the Richmond half marathon, which was my third half marathon ever. It was a lot of fun! I got to spend some time with great friends, and had a great run! Turns out I just keep getting faster! My first half marathon was the 2012 Richmond half and I finished in 2:04. Then in February of 2013 I finished the Colonial half marathon in Williamsburg, VA in 2:02. Last weekend my goal was to break the 2 hour barrier, but my expectations were low because I really only ran once, maybe twice a week this fall. I did a lot of cross training, but I didn’t think it was enough to improve my time.

My brother and I posing with the Governor pre race!
My brother and me posing with the Governor pre race!

On Saturday it only took me 1 hour and 57 minutes to run 13.1 miles! I was so excited!

I had a terrible night’s sleep the night before, and I wasn’t feeling particularly well. But I took a few tylenol and suited up with the expectation to try my best. Once I started running I actually felt great! I was running pretty fast (for me) and I just kept pushing because it felt good. Here’s how the race played out in terms of splits and some of the songs I remember that came up on my shuffle.

1: 9:20- Weaving through the crowd at the start. Lips are Movin by Meghan Trainor- I got this at the beginning and towards the last couple miles.

2: 9:01- Found my pace. Irreplaceable by Beyonce- This was a short uphill. Beyonce=motivation.

3: 8:58- Gold Digger by Kanye West feat. Jamie Foxx- This one got me through mile 3, and reminded me of senior year of college!

4: 8:55- So Emotional (David Morales mix) by Whitney Houston kept me moving.

5: 8:57- Call Me Maybe by Carly Rae Jepson came on- It’s a classic.

6: 9:06- I think this was a little uphill. Stutter by Marianas Trench got me through.

7: 8:56- I’m surprised my splits were that consistent for 6 miles straight. If I Could Change Your Mind by HAIM.

8: 9:14- This is a rough mile (for me at least) because you’ve run 8 and you still have 5 more. You need to refresh that motivation! Rich Girls by Down With Webster definitely made me laugh on the inside at this point.

9: 8:50 This was when I really decided I could push it and make sure the tank was completely empty at 13. Amazing by Kanye West feat. Young Jeezy came on, I think I listened to this 3 times in a row in mile 9.

10: 8:37- Killing it. Shake it Off by Taylor Swift- Obvi.

11: 8:36- Killing it. Bailando by Enrique Iglesias feat. Sean Paul, Descemer Bueno & Gente de Zona, because Enrique is the pinnacle of inspiration.

12: 8:42- Killing it. Dancing On My Own by Robyn, because Robyn is awesome running music.

13: 8:23- full disclosure: the last half mile of the race is downhill. I have no idea what songs finished the race for me. I was just so happy to be finishing!

This unflattering look says I'm freezing, tired, and ready to take a shower asap.
This unflattering look says I’m freezing, tired, and ready to take a shower asap. My brother is just happy he’s still in one piece. My dad is clearly elated with our accomplishment.


I survived the half marathon!  Thanks for all the well wishes along the way!  I had such a great run!  I had a vague goal of beating 2:10 because I wanted to try to break a 10 min average mile.  But I had a really good race, and I felt like running fast so I ended up at 2:04 which put me at an average of a 9:26 mile.  I’m feeling pretty good about it.  It was a perfect day for racing: warm enough to be comfortable but cool enough to keep you from sweating like crazy.  All in all it was a great experience!  Congrats to all my fellow runners!

Here are some of the songs on my shuffle that got me through the race:

  1. Va Va Voom by Nicki Minaj
  2. I Cry by Flo Rida
  3. 2 Reasons by Trey Songz feat. TI
  4. Hummingbird Heartbeat by Katy Perry
  5. This Head I Hold by Electric Guest (random but awesome)
  6. Girl on Fire by Alicia Keys feat. Nicki Minaj
  7. I Knew You Were Trouble by Taylor Swift
  8. Your Body by Christina Aguilera
  9. We Run the Night by Havana Brown feat. Pitbull
  10. Katy Perry Mega Mix by Katy Perry and Tommy Sunshine

After the race I hung out with my parents who came to Richmond to cheer me on.  My mom is a big fan of the VMFA (Virginia Museum of Fine Arts), so we spent the afternoon there checking out their Chihuly exhibit.  It was mainly all kinds of crazy blown glass.  Here’s just a sample of the stuff we saw:

What’s on your workout mix these days?

Half Time

Tomorrow is the big day.  I’m running the Richmond Half Marathon!  My very first half marathon, and definitely the longest distance I’ve run ever.   Even though I’m a workout fanatic, I’ve never been much of a runner.  I just don’t feel like my body was built for that kind of exercise, it doesn’t love the amount of impact.  But I decided to step outside of my comfort zone and challenge myself.  I chose a half marathon because I felt like it was an attainable goal given that I have an erratic schedule with grad school.  I really need some level of flexibility with my workouts, and I like variety in my workouts.  With a half marathon, as opposed to a full marathon, you don’t have to run every day, and you’re not doing training runs that take three hours.

I’ve been running about three times a week with longer runs on weekends.  The last few weekends I’ve done about 11 miles.  I feel like I’m ready because if I can do 11, I could squeeze in 2 more.  Plus I’ve been running on a hilly path and I think the race is a flatter course.  I’m super excited!

I’m ready with my race outfit.  I did a dress rehearsal with it last weekend to make sure it was comfy for a long run.  There is nothing worse than doing a long run with sports bra that rubs, or pants that slide down!  I think this outfit is going to be a winner for me.

You might notice that I’m wearing shoes that I bought last February from DSW.  Well, not really.  I actually liked those sneakers so much, I bought another pair.  Then it was so close to the race I figured I needed a relatively fresh pair, so I bought them again.  I actually had to write numbers on the insoles to remember which pair is which!

And don’t forget the accessories!


Wish me luck!

Do you have any fitness related goals this year?