Have you ever utter the words “I will never do that again” and then found yourself of sound mind and body doing the same thing again a year later?? Those were the exact words I spoke as I cried on the shoulder of a good friend at the finish line of the 2014 Mini marathon. Then a year later I was huddled in corral “N” wondering how the heck I got there!
The One America Mini Marathon is the largest half marathon in the United States and it’s right here in my Hoosier hometown. Many folks make running this 13.1 an annual tradition, collecting the checkered medals, taking bets on whether it will be 40 degrees or 80 degrees on race day. Such is May in Indiana. This was only the second (and final) time I have laced up for this race. Like all big races, the Mini expo is fantastic. Loud, full of energy and free giveaways. I managed to maneuver my double wide stroller through the Indiana Convention Center and picked up my packet with my littlest two in tow. They LOVED the atmosphere and were ready to strap on their own running shoes. This years shirts ROCK and i picked up some new flavors of GU and a new style of Yerbuds.
During training, I developed a pesky issue with my right IT band. What started out as a little discomfort during a training run eventually put a stop to running all together. For the last 4 weeks leading up to race day I didn’t run more than 4 miles. I had always heard it was better to show up at the starting line undertrained than over trained, I was going to put that theory to the test.
My race gear: new running shades, Nuun cherry limeade, GU (root beer and chocolate peanut butter), Clif Blocks and my bulky but trusty Amphipod pack.
You cannot help but be excited at the starting line of this race. The number of runners, walkers, and wheelchair competitors is just amazing. The adrenaline of 40,000 runners is palpable. Allison and I met up with another mommy runner, braved the port-a-potty lines and made our way to the corrals. Here’s the view around us! Literally a sea of runners.
Just after 8:15am we were off! The draw of the Mini Marathon is the miles you run along with Indianapolis Motor Speedway, the home of the Indy 500. Personally, the track is my least favorite part. It’s hot, long and the course gets congested as no one wants to run on the incline of the track. But the entertainment along with entire half marathon course is so fun and motivating.
As always, I begin to hit a wall around mile 10. I try to play tricks on my mind that it’s only a 5K left to go. But without fail, I get bored with my music, my body starts hurting, and I question why I decide to run this distance. I saw this sign just past mile 11 and nearly cried. This is my story. A story of a mama who one day decided to lace up some running shoes and see what happened. The story of a girl who used to skip out on mile long run in high school gym class and now would base a family vacation around a race. The story of a woman who thought she couldn’t until she proved to herself that she could.
The twelfth mile of the Mini is notorious. So many runners swear they throw a little extra distance in between the 12th and 13th mile markers. But as you head east towards downtown there are some incredible views to take in.
While it’s not my NYC skyline, it’s home now.
The final push to the finish!
Crossed with finish line with an official time of 2:18:54. My slowest time to date but I achieved my goal of making to the finish line without the help of a medic! We got our super lame post race food (banana, cookie and water or Gatorade), posed for a few professional photos I never buy and hobbled back to the car. Along the way I uttered those famous words “I’ll never do that again”….