11 In Race Report

Soaring Wings Half Marathon 2014 Recap

Hey hey!

Sorry this post is coming a little later than I anticipated, but my husband surprised me with a day off at the spa so I was away from my computer all day! Not sorry one bit 🙂 Catching you up now, though!

The Soaring Wings Half Marathon was this past weekend, and boy was it a tough one. Here’s how it all went down…

Soaring Wings Half Marathon 2014 Recap

I went to the expo Friday night, and tried to ignore the elevation map. This course is actually my half marathon PR (1:58), so I’m familiar with the course, and remember there being hills last year. But, I don’t remember the hills being something I necessarily hated. Also, last year at the start it was in the 40’s. Oh, if only.

soarings wings half elevation map

I laid out my outfit, and you’ll notice that my outfit included shorts and a tank top! At the END OF OCTOBER! That’s right ya’ll, Saturday’s race was HOT. At the start, it was in the low 60’s, and by the time we finished, it was about 80, if not higher than 80. Woof! And when you’re running 13.1 miles, 80 feels a bit more like 90. I decided to carry my hand-held water bottle as well, which I’ve NEVER done, but I just had this feeling that this race I was going to need it. I also ran in my new Mizuno Wave Riders, and will be reviewing them tomorrow or Wednesday!

soaring wings half

Race day morning, Adam and I drove up to Conway, and were there with about 15 minutes to spare.

foggy sunrise conway

We snapped a quick, sweat-free pic, and I jogged over to the porta-potty line, then headed to the starting line.

soaring wings half 2014

I started off between the 1:55 and 2:00 corral, and figured I’d try to stay cautiously optimistic and see how things went!

I stayed right behind the 1:55 pacer for about the first 7 miles. Then after that it got ugly – the wheels fell off and the heat hit me HARD. It was one of the first times during a half marathon that I remember looking at my watch and thinking, “I’m ONLY at mile 8??!! 5 more miles???” Usually the miles fly by! I’ve never been so excited to be done with a race, how bad is that?? Totally not like myself at all! I don’t think it was due to a lack in training or cardio shape, but rather a number of other factors combined. It was about 20 degrees warmer than anyone anticipated, my energy level was already deteriorated from having a cold for three days leading up to the race, then add in a hilly course, and things are exponentially harder! So frustrating, but I know I wasn’t the only one who had a tough time with this race. Around mile 7, I passed a runner who had apparently passed out and the medic/ambulance were tending to her on the side of the road. Pretty scary!

I finished in 2:04:23 / 2:04:24, 9:26/mi average pace.

Here are my splits:

Mile 1- 8:38
2- 8:45
3- 8:53
4- 9:05
5- 8:49
6- 9:06
7- 9:07
8- 10:07
9- 9:27
10- 10:38
11- 10:31
12- 10:14
13- 9:33
.1- 1:28

Yep, no salvaging this one after mile 8. Ha! I pretty much decided to just have fun, sing along to my music, and not die before I got to the finish line.

I actually was walking briefly through one of the last few water stops, when the lady next to me looked at me and said, “you look so familiar, what is your name?” To which I replied, “Sarah…?” And she said, “Do you write a blog?” And I said, “YES!” and she said, “I’ve read your blog!” And I said, “No way!! That is awesome!! I’ll have to give you a shoutout in my recap!” So, lady in the blue shirt, this is your shoutout! I’m so sorry I didn’t have the energy to get your name! And I’m so sorry you saw me at my WORST! Ha!

Ok, here are a few pictures from the race photographers…

These first two I’m pretty sure were taken at mile 12, at the top of the last hill. (Whoever the race director is that plans a big hill at mile 12 is cray cray.) I look like I’m in so much pain! Not so much pain, but more so just a hot and foggy feeling. I had gatorade in my water bottle and drank almost the entire thing over the course of the race, plus water at every other stop, and still felt icky.

Screen Shot 2014-10-26 at 9.20.21 PM

Screen Shot 2014-10-26 at 9.20.53 PM

Annnnd here we are at the finish. I picked it up a little for the last mile, and was honestly pretty excited to see the time because I really thought I was doing way worse! Thank goodness I was closer to the 2 hour mark than I thought I was or I would have been quite a bit more disappointed! And really not even disappointed, but just annoyed more than anything. Meh, oh well!

Screen Shot 2014-10-26 at 9.21.27 PM

All in all though, enough negative thoughts, let’s be positive! I really am so happy I was able to pull through the race, and still meet my C goal. Not every race will be amazing, not every race will be easy, and not every race will give you the warm fuzzies. It’s the hard races that make you appreciate the good ones and keep you motivated to do better next time! But, I did it, had fun, and am still proud of myself! Each time I do a long race, I come away with several lessons learned about myself. I walk away feeling strong, powerful, and confident that I can do anything I put my mind to.

soaring wings half marathon recap

Half #7 done and run!!! WOOHOO!!!

7th half marathon

Adam positioned himself right at the last turn, so it was a nice surprise and pick-me-up as I was heading into the finisher chute. That sweet husband of mine. He’s the best.

soaring wings half review

swhalf marathon

I’m leaning more and more towards gearing my focus for the Walt Disney World Marathon more towards having fun, and completing it feeling good, rather than a very serious time. But that could change tomorrow. Who knows! I’ve got an idea of the time I’d like to meet, but we’ll see!

When’s the last hard race you ran? Are you training for a marathon later this winter? What did you do this weekend?

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  • Reply
    Lisa @ Running Out of Wine
    October 28, 2014 at 5:03 am

    Great job!! That elevation looks intense! My next half is in March so I’ll have a little break after my full next month before I start training. Sometimes I consider doing a race for fun at then the excitement of race day always gets the best of me!

  • Reply
    October 28, 2014 at 8:07 am

    Congrats on completing the half marathon! Running in the heat is hard. Good job at pushing through the heat to the finish line!
    Tina@GottaRunNow recently posted…22 Mile Run: 3 Things to Try When Training for 26.2 or MoreMy Profile

  • Reply
    Joanna @Makingmine
    October 28, 2014 at 9:45 am

    Great job Sarah! You have a lot to be proud of! I’m really hoping a half marathon will be in my future after this baby arrives! (maybe someday I’ll make it to 7)
    Joanna @Makingmine recently posted…expecting baby #2My Profile

  • Reply
    Julie @ Running in a Skirt
    October 28, 2014 at 1:12 pm

    Great job! You should be proud, even though it was not exactly what you wanted.
    My last hard race was actually a 5K I thought I might PR, but like you the heat got me. It was early spring and it was a lot hotter than I expected or trained for. I totally feel ya!
    Julie @ Running in a Skirt recently posted…Skinny Crock Pot Potato Cheddar SoupMy Profile

  • Reply
    Abby @ BackAtSquareZero
    October 28, 2014 at 8:42 pm

    How cool. I have never had a reader recognize me, don’t know what I would do in that situation.
    Sorry it was a tough race, but great job on the finish.
    Abby @ BackAtSquareZero recently posted…A Training TruthMy Profile

  • Reply
    Kristen @ Glitter and Dust
    October 28, 2014 at 8:54 pm

    Nice work!! Killer performance regardless of the hills, heat, and being sick the days before. That is so funny that someone recognized you from the blog. I probably would have done the same thing! It’s amazing how our perception of hills can change over time. It’s probably a good thing our mind is programmed to forget pain.

    If I did the Disney World Marathon (which is on my list) I would definitely do it more for fun! I’ll be running the California International Marathon in six weeks and hope to have a fun, pressure-free mentality going into it.
    Kristen @ Glitter and Dust recently posted…CIM Training And Learning To Take A Chill PillMy Profile

  • Reply
    Molly Rose
    October 28, 2014 at 9:46 pm

    The pics of you on the hill make me exhausted just looking at! Way to stick it through, despite all the factors. And also way to go on not being hard on yourself…. it’s important to have fun and hey, you just ran 13.1 miles… for the SEVENTH time. You cray girl. Way to go 🙂
    Molly Rose recently posted…Final Weeks of Halfathon Training!My Profile

  • Reply
    Stacie @ SimplySouthernStacie
    October 29, 2014 at 9:25 am

    Hot and hilly? My two least favorite words to hear alongside running or race. You did a great job!!
    Stacie @ SimplySouthernStacie recently posted…Happy Late Blogiversary + Whole Foods Giveaway!My Profile

  • Reply
    October 29, 2014 at 11:21 am

    When I was getting a grip on the course to know where to look for my runners, my friend told me that you all had to go up and back on the worst hill in the city on Meadowlake and College, the hill with the four way stops that even cars hate. I gave a gasp. You did fantastic though despite the heat, the rather evil course, and your cold!
    Bree recently posted…3 years: a true taleMy Profile

  • Reply
    Tara @ Running 'N' Reading
    October 29, 2014 at 5:29 pm

    Oh, Lord! That race! You did great, Sarah! I’m discovering that everyone seems to have found their “not-so-happy” place between miles 7 and 8; there was just NO escaping the sun, heat and humidity at that point. I remember feeling a slight breeze at around mile 12 and thinking, “are you kidding me? Now, a breeze?” It was just too little, too late. I’m glad that you can appreciate your accomplishment and recognize that getting through a tough race is win enough! So glad you made it and with a smile at the finish! Woo hoo! Way to go, girl! Can’t wait to see what’s next for you… 😉
    Tara @ Running ‘N’ Reading recently posted…Soaring Wings Half MarathonMy Profile

  • Reply
    November 3, 2014 at 10:10 pm

    I was planning on running a half in December, but bailed on the training 🙁 The last hard race I did was a 5K. Stroller, hills and poor training doesn’t a good race make.
    LifeAsAConvert recently posted…Activity Day Girls Lesson Idea – CommunicationMy Profile

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