October 2009 - Good Things in Threes
1. I ran a half marathon in a nor'easter in Newport, RI. It was one of the stupidest things I have ever done. Sideways rain? No thank you. I remember standing at the start line reassessing my time goal and my sanity. I have very little desire to run in weather like that ever again. BUT I can proudly say that I survived and finished well under my goal of 2 hours. Even though it wasn't my fastest half marathon, it was one of my strongest performances. I felt like I could do anything after slogging along in cold wind-driven rain for 13.1 miles.
2. The following weekend, I ran a local 5-mile race. I didn't pre-register because I wasn't sure how I would feel after the half marathon. I was close to defending my dissertation, and I wasn't sure I'd have enough extra time. Boy, am I glad I decided to do it at the last minute. I was the third female finisher! For my $20 entry fee, I got a long-sleeve T-shirt, a banana, a bottle of Vitamin water, a nice buffet lunch, and a $50 cash prize. Score!
3. Then I defended my dissertation 10 days after the nor'easter race and 4 days after the local 5 miler. I can honestly say the half marathon was harder than the dissertation defense. Or maybe it was the confidence boost from kicking asphalt in Newport.
October 2010 - Run, PR, Repeat
1. Ran a half marathon (Divas Half Marathon in Long Island) a week after running my first ever 20 mile run (for no reason ... I didn't need to run that far). I signed up one week in advance. Newport was my target race, but my training had gone better than I expected. I set a half marathon PR at Divas by a minute and a half.
2. Ran 12 miles the following weekend while on vacation in Vermont. Then ran the Newport half marathon the weekend after that. Anything would have been better than the nor'easter. Race morning was cool and sunny. Perfect running weather. I set my half marathon PR again by a minute and a half.
3. I was pleased with my half marathon performance, and so I registered for my first marathon. I had been seriously contemplating marathons for almost a year. It was time to do it.