The Austin Half was this morning and it was a good day to run, only my legs disagreed. I had a long day at work on Saturday- 38 animals to spay and neuter and then a rear leg amputation on a chow that had been hit by a car. And it's odd because the day before the 3M I also had an amputation. But yesterday was a much longer day and I went home with my back and legs already hurting. I decided that it would be a bad idea to take any Aleve before the race, can't remember why, because after going to be at 8 pm exhausted, I tossed and turned and my sore legs ached until about 11, when I finally gave in and took some. It helped, but I still slept poorly and even considered turning off my alarm and sleeping in.
But no need for the alarm because at 4:30 I was up. I decided to go run and if I had a DNF, so be it, but at least go try it. I got ready, headed downtown way early and got a prime parking spot. Warmed up, hit the port o potties a couple of four times, and then we were off. The first three miles are a gradual incline, so no worries I was going slower, then the next three were a nice descent back. T3er K was doing a training run, looking for all the people she knew running the race, so we ran together for about a mile and that was fun. Passing TLAC, I thought about stopping by to say hello, but I didn't think I could do it quickly, and I was already at the back of the pack, so I just waved and was happy to be running and not working today. The most painful hills start around mile 9, up Enfield, and at that point as I at 2:20, and I figured I didn't have a PR in me, so I definitely slowed up some more. My right metatarsal neuroma thing was back with a vengeance, and I was walking up the hills, and then walking some even when there were no hills. Mile 9-11, that's always the low energy point for me- you're tired because you've gone a long way, but it's still not very close to the finish. And I knew the worst hill at 15th Street was coming up- and that's when I saw M and C from work, who were there cheering with their posse of dogs, one of which is the amputation poodle from three weeks ago! They were awesome and a good pick me up, and helped me run up the horrible last hill. The last mile through downtown was pretty flat, and then we joined the full marathoners about 1/2 mile from the finish. I like to finish as a big group, but here we were separated by a huge barricade. So the fast age grouper runners were hauling ass in, and the half marathoners were straggling, and the people on the half side of the street had stopped cheering. That's an odd experience, to have 50 people watching you come in, all silent. But I did hear J and a couple other T3ers cheering on the other side for me, and I finished in 3:32:18 according to my watch.
I'm glad I ran it, and I'm also glad to take a break from running and running half marathons for a while. I did just realize that this was my fourth half in six months- I think I need a rest. I'm also ready to do some more cycling and also take the T3 swim clinic. My running has improved- this was my second fastest of the four, and on a hilly course, and after the equivalent of a hard leg workout the day before. And I almost didn't do it. I'm happy I did.