Last Sunday I ran Philly’s first ever LOVE Half Marathon. CGI Racing put together a fantastic half – super organized with wonderful volunteers (who stood outside for hours in a freezing downpour). If you like the Philly Half in November (my favorite race), then you’ll like the LOVE Run. I’m so happy that Philly has another distance race in the Spring…something other than Broad Street.
This race was a lot of firsts for me: first race postpartum, first race in a total downpour, and first race where I didn’t look at my Garmin (not one single time). The weather was awful – freezing, windy, and nonstop rain.
My original plan was to make this a fun run, especially since postpartum running has been very blah lately. Standing at the start, freezing and wet, all I kept thinking was the faster you run, the faster you get done. Screw the fun run, I didn’t want to spend another minute in these conditions if I didn’t have to.
That’s when the strategy changed to let’s run HM effort and not look at the Garmin. I love running by effort (although I rarely do it) – there’s no magic pace to hit, no pace charts to follow, just you and your breath. And not looking at my Garmin was WAY easier than I thought…partially because it was under my windbreaker and I couldn’t see it anyway.
M1 – 8:51
M2 – 8:19
M3 – 8:51
M4 – 8:14
M5 – 8:20
M6 – 8:43
M7 – 8:19
M8 – 8:08
M9 – 8:52
M10 – 8:48
M11 – 8:41
M12 – 8:45
M13 – 8:36
Official time: 1:53:07 (8:38 pace)
Not the most consistent pacing and the wheels came off a bit towards the end but that’s to be expected after a year plus of not racing. I was in total shock when I crossed the finish line and looked at my watch. I was hoping for a (barely) sub-2:00 finish time. If I were eyeing my Garmin I would have freaked out about my pace during the middle miles (what are you doing? You have no business running that fast!). Not looking at my Garmin was the best thing I did that day. And also having absolutely no expectations helps tremendously.
Thanks to Oiselle teammate Danielle for keeping me company for a few miles. It definitely took my mind off the misery of the weather.
Race photos: me, my sister, and sister-in-law pre-race (and rain) and post-race awkward selfie.
Beth @ RUNNING around my kitchen says
Oh I miss Philly races! You did awesome, congrats on a great race, especially given the weather! I actually think you were more consistent than you give yourself credit for considering you weren’t looking at your watch. Running a race in heavy rain or snow is actually one of my biggest fears. I think you rocked it!
Holy crap that is one speedy half marathon! Nice work! I haven’t raced in a total downpour either – knock on wood – not something I want to change!
Congrats on your first race back! That’s an awesome time! (I love not looking at my watch during races, I really think it makes me run faster, since my brain can’t talk me out of a faster pace. I hate when races spoil it, by having a clock at every mile).
You’ll be back to PR shape in no time! Congrats again!
Wow, great time!! Congrats!!
Danielle @ Trails & Cocktails says
Congrats! It was so nice running with you, and I literally could not believe you just gave birth. SO amazing!