i completed my first half-marathon and lived to tell about it. i was able to run the first 10k without stopping (and it surprisingly felt pretty easy), walked for 1k to pace myself (a suggestion by pro-half-marathaon runner, ashly kissman, who ended up being the best pace bunny ever and awesome to run it with), and then my knee started causing problems, which led to quite a bit of limping. there were times i was in excruciating pain and was even offered ways out by the medical staff, but something inside of me was so determined to finish the race (part of it could be linked to the fact that i wanted to cross it off my bucket-list), even if that meant limping over the finish line.
i used the “well, it could be worse” mentality (eg. at least it’s not scorching hot out, at least i don’t have shin splints, at least i don’t have a side stitch, etc.), enjoyed my surroundings, pushed through the pain, and ran as fast as my body would let me across that finish line. my first official half-marathon time: 2:41:07.
the race was such a fun one to run, with a ton of awesome cheer-stations that really helped pump you up! my personal favourites were the huge group of kids who were holding up the “run random adult” signs, all the “run now, wine later” and “a keg is waiting for you at the finish line” signs, that really illustrate vancouver’s community of alcoholics that like to exercise (i’m sure 90% of vancouverites running that race had a drink right after), and the text on the distance markers that were put up by lululemon. there was also a million random distractions along the way – i felt like i was in willy wonka’s chocolate factory.
pictures taken from lululemon.
the event (from the actual race itself, to the sunset festival later on) was the most well-organized event i’ve been to in vancouver – i was thoroughly impressed. everything started on time (!!!!), amazing sponsors/partnerships were in place (i received free skull candy earphones as soon as i crossed that finish line!), and you could just tell all the details were really thought-out and perfected, from what was written on each marker sign, to ordering an abundance of school-busses so no one would have to wait more than two minutes (literally) for a shuttle to the festival. lounge chairs were set up everywhere at the festival, which was great and made it that much more comfortable – i lay down in the sun on a tanning chair and got to feel like i was a part of the huge outdoor yoga class that took place, even though i couldn’t participate because of my knee. servers were walking around the beer garden at the festival so you wouldn’t have to get up to stand in line… beer fairy magic! passenger and xavier rudd performed, and the sunset festival was the perfect way to end this amazing experience.