I remember registering for the FM Half a few months ago, and thinking how wonderful running in November was going to be. November is typically full of rain and cool-fronts. If you hit it JUST right, you have AWESOME running weather (if you don't hit it right, you have Splash and Dash or...Wine and Dine.) Never did I think we would be running in 97% humidity and temperatures approaching the 90's... (so miserable).
Mile 1 felt GREAT! Perhaps a little too great, because it was my fastest mile (11:21). I hit my groove and made a friend for miles 2-8. My pace was slowly creeping up from low 12 minute per mile to low 13 minute per mile, but I wasn't too concerned about that. It was starting to get REALLY hot and I was starting to get a head ache.
Just after mile 8 we turned a corner and started up a ramp... "just like Disney" I told myself for the entire time. Disney is always throwing ramps and over passes in the course (just for kicks and giggles I suppose). When I reached mile 9 I was exhausted. So I decided I'd walk until 9.5... that turned into walking until mile 10,... and then eventually walking until mile 11.
At mile 11 I made myself promise I'd go back to running 30:30's. 30 second running and 30 second walking. I kept my promise and mile 11 proved to be the most grueling of them all... (a 17:12 mile pace).
During mile 11 we started the climb up and over the second bridge of the course, and had now been in direct sunlight since mile 9. By this point, I was just ready to be done - I couldn't imagine how the runners doing the full marathon were feeling, but the finish line was coming.
Even though I could see the finish line for the last mile, it took all I had in me to cross the finish line.
After the race I walked directly to the nearest curb and plopped myself down to hydrate. It was during that time while talking over the race with my husband that I realized I had missed my sub 3 hour half marathon by a few seconds.
I'm sad but not upset, I gave it my all. It was hot, it was humid and I was running on less than 4 hours of sleep.
When I look back on this race, I will remember the older woman who cheered me on throughout the race, the fire fighter running in all her gear to raise awareness for cancer and watching the Marathon winner cross the finish line!
Official time: 3:00:10
Thanks for the memories and the PR Fort Myers Half!