This race is a scenic, pretty flat, loop course that goes through the beachy commercial area of Hampton and then runs through some of the residential areas of the town. The race forecast was 50 degrees and cloudy, the perfect weather for running. It was a bit chilly at the start line because I decided to wear shorts, a tank top and arm sleeves. Everyone else seemed to be bundled up like it was a winter day (I laughed at them later when they were stripping off layers 3 miles into the race).
I positioned myself in wave three (9-10min/mile), my goal was 9 min miles but I knew
I probably wouldn’t go any faster than that. The start was a little confusing, I wasn’t
really quite sure when I crossed the line, but I must have started my watch at the right time because it was pretty spot on with my official time. I was forced to take it slow the first two miles because of runners being in the wrong wave and kind of being inconsiderate by running 4 wide. After mile 3 though, everyone start to filter out into the correct paces and I stayed with the same people for most of the time.
I skipped the first two water stops, I’m not sure if that was a good idea though because by the time the third one came up I was pretty parched. But I’m not used to drinking on the run, I just started running with a water belt this summer and only for runs over 10 miles and when it was super hot out I’m also not very graceful at drinking water while moving and most of it ends up on my shirt instead of in my mouth.
About half way through the race, my pace was on point to finish for my goal of 2 hours. But then in the next half hour a couple of small but rolling hills slowed me
down a little bit, so I tried to pick up my pace on the down hills and maybe over exerted myself a bit because I dry heaved a little. At mile 7, I was almost hit by a car that decided to ignore the “Roads Closed” signs and drive through the runners (Thanks Dude). Miles 11-12 were pretty rough, I had to start my mantra of “I feel good, I feel good” to keep my little legs from moving (I was determined not to walk AT ALL). Miles 12-13 were the hardest I ever pushed myself, on the brink of throwing up, I kept going because I wanted it so badly. That last quarter mile I sprinted so hard, I don’t really remember crossing the finish line (I’m pretty sure this picture is during this sprint).
I missed my goal though by ONE MINUTE.which is slightly disappointing because I was SO close, but I’m really happy with my time. It was an 8 minute PR from my first half marathon (3 years ago!) and 15 minutes faster than the half marathon I did back in May of this year. I would definitely do this race again, it was the perfect time of year with a beautiful course and swag was pretty awesome.