Monday, January 20, 2014

Ocala Half Recap

Yesterday was run #11 the Ocala Half Marathon.  Since this was in my town I was looking forward to it. I could sleep in my own bed, not get at 3am and it was a beautiful course although there are lots of hills.

Went to packet pickup Saturday and was very disappointed.  They call it an expo, and I knew it would be small because it was last year but this year there was only 1 vendor who had very limited inventory. So I went and shopped at Sports Authority instead :-)

On my way out of the mall I did see them setting up the finish line - woohoo!

Got everything laid out that night and went to bed early and then didn't sleep most of the night :-(

Got to the mall and found someone I knew from the Run Space Coast FB group and we hung out until the start, trying to stay warm. It was in the 30s too cold for this FL girl. But once the sun came up and we were moving it was a great temp.

After a slight delay starting the people running the marathon, the half marathoners took off a few minutes later. I had decided to do 1:1 intervals for the first half and 30:30 for the second. I took off and was cruising along at my desired pace.

Then about 1.5 miles in a woman caught up to me and said "I've been trying to catch up to you. I am going to run with you." Um, ok. I like to run alone but also can't be rude. We were going the same pace so we ran and she talked. She waa very nice and it did help to make the first half go quickly.

The scenery was beautiful, we ran in some roads I haven't been on before so it was nice seeing the farms, horses and cows. The hills were challenging but so far so good.

At about 9 miles in I realized that not only could I get a PR but I could beat my stretch goal of finishing in 3:15. Woohoo!

That's when the hills started to get tough and with about 2.5 miles left I slowed down and lost my new friend.  But I was still on track to meet 3:15. In the last 0.25 mile my calves kept trying to cramp up on me but then I saw mom & Becky at the finish line and I slowly ran across the finish line in 3:13:42 YAY!!!!!!

I definitely enjoyed this race and would do it again, but I am thinking next year I may have to do the Clearwater half because the beach trumps horse farms any time lol!

And I do have pics but I am writing this on my phone and can't add them...

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