I’m going to pass along my advice on training for a half-marathon. Do it. Train, that is. And that is all.
I have old-lady hips now.
I’m not even 40 yet.
We participated in the Shamrock Half-Marathon this past weekend in Va Beach. We’ve known about it for a while. We signed up sometime last year. I even printed out a training schedule to be able to slowly train my way up to being able to run 13.1 miles. But I wasn’t going to push myself. In fact, I wasn’t even sure if I’d complete the race. The friends I’d be running with were planning on stopping along the way to listen to the bands and drink beer. BUT, I wanted to train just in case they ended up not racing.
Then it got cold, and I don’t like the cold. I did not train. I didn’t even think about training.
Last weekend arrived and we made our way to Va Beach. I thought to myself — I’ll just walk the half-marathon. I’ll walk the whole way. I’ve even gone to NYC several times and have walked all over that city. It had to be close to 13 miles that I’ve walked around NYC. Granted, that was over three or four days, and not all at once, but still. I was sure I could walk 13.1 miles in less than four hours. How hard could it be?
Countdown from 10 to 1–all the racers left the starting line. My friend and I began to walk (along with plenty of other walkers…we weren’t the only ones).
And we walked.
And we walked.
And the wind blew, and we walked.
We jogged a couple of times, and then we walked some more.
There WAS NO PLACE TO STOP AND LISTEN TO BANDS. There was not even a place to cut off the course and have someone come pick you up if you just wanted to quit. You had to get an ambulance for that kind of service.
So we walked, and walked, and jogged, and walked.
By the time we got to the half-way mark, I could feel it in my legs. Really just in my glutes and hip flexors. By the time we were about 3/4 of the way done, I knew I couldn’t stop or else I’d stop walking all together. In fact, my walking pace increased. I think I was desperate to reach the finish line. We were hobbling more than walking now.
After the race they corralled us onto the beach into the finishers’ tent, where you could get food (glorious food) and drinks. ONTO THE BEACH. Who can walk on shifting sand after having just completed a half-marathon? I was so desperate for food though that I hobbled through the sand to the tent.
And then I sat down. Mistake. My legs didn’t want to cooperate after that.
I did end up making it back to the hotel. I couldn’t run across the streets though. I had to rely on the mercy of the oncoming traffic to slow down. I think a couple of boy scouts wanted to escort me to receive badges. And we slept for the rest of the day.
Yesterday we drove home. Each time we got out of the car I had to relearn how to walk, convincing my hips that they indeed did want to help my legs move back and forth.
Moral of the story: you absolutely must, without a doubt, train for a half-marathon. Even if you’re going to walk 95% of it. You’ll thank me for that advice. And you may not end up with old-lady hips.
Not So SAHM
~~~ ~~~ ~~~ ~~~ ~~~ ~~~ ~~~ ~~~ ~~~ ~~~ ~~~ ~~~ ~~~ ~~~ ~~~