Race Recap of Hamilton Road2Hope Half Marathon

The weekend is over and I have officially ran my first half-marathon!

I didn’t really know what to expect going into Sunday morning, but I feel I did as best as I could!

Race Kit pick-up started on Friday at 1pm, so I quickly booted it down to Hamilton with our youngest to grab my kit.  Location was easy to get to and so my nerves about timing for race morning were at ease.  The Expo its self was underwhelming, but I was able to grab my stuff and go.
The kit its self had a couple samples, a outdoor magazine, and our bib. I also got a nice long-sleeved shirt.

I made sure I went to sleep extra early on Friday Night, thankfully, as I knew the nerves would take over Saturday night giving me a terrible sleep! Thank goodness for that “extra” hour!
I was really good on Halloween too, and didn’t even sneak the kids candy! I did however pack 4 little bags of chips, I knew I’d be craving post race!

Sunday I was up bright and early; 4:50am! Quickly got on my gear, made my PB bagel, grabbed a banana and my NUUN tabs and was out the door!

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I went with a caffeinated nuun drink to get my electrolytes in and insure I did not get a headache pre-run. Worked like a charm.

I made it to the finish line around 6 am, loaded into the bus and was on my way. We were dropped off to the starting line and thankfully were able to spend the next couple hours in a warm community building!  I finished my breakfast and slowly sipped on my drink.  After a couple failed bathroom attempts (TMI, sorry) I took an Imodium and  prayed it would do the trick (it did!)
While waiting for the start I was able to chat with some lovely ladies who were well versed in the running world, best advice I was given by one lady was:
“Running is somewhat predictable,  by the time race day comes your body know what its in for, there are no need for nerves”
She was right, my body was ready, I was ready, my mental game was not.

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I lined up with the 1:50 pacer, and was totally ready to rock the race, tied my shoes tight, said a prayer and was off….I barley hit 1 km and my foot was cramping, shoes were too tight, I lost my pace group, and my head was a mess!  It probably took me 6 km and one gel to get my head into the game. By that point I was taking Honeymaxx and water at every station, gels more often then I wanted, and running at a slower then planned pace.

The course its self was lovely and scenic, just how I like it! Temperature was okay for the most part, at times too cool for no jacket, but then other times to warm. I realized I have a lot to learn about proper gear for me (I run on the cold side) and once I figure that out it should help! I also have to work on my mental game, I battled a lot of self doubt as I ran, and didn’t really have any reason to be doing that. I finished under 2 hours, which was goal B, so I will take it, move on and do better next time!

At the finish line I had a great couple from our life group cheering me on, which was amazing and emotional! Shortly after another couple found me! They were waiting for me at mile 40, but had just missed them by  minutes!  Luckily we were able to visit for a little bit and capture my first post race medal pic!

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Looking back on the day now it was great! and I cannot wait for next years race season! I have big goals for year 2, by His grace I will get them!!!

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