29 Half Marathons Later…
April 17 will mark five years since my first half marathon. It’s hard to believe it’s been that long! I’ve had the most success with the half marathon distance…and we like what we are most successful at right?
Just kidding, I like half marathons because there is enough time to warm up during the race but they aren’t neverending like a marathon. Thinking out loud, the training for a half doesn’t consume you. If you have a bad half, you can recover quickly and race again relatively soon.
Until I compiled this list, I had no idea how many I had actually run so I hope I didn’t forget any.
April 2011 Plattsburgh (1:41) PR
April 2011 Flower City (Rochester) 1:39 PR
May 2011 Run for the Dream (Williamsburg, VA) 1:36.56 PR
March 2012 Shamrock (VA Beach) 1:33.29 PR
April 2012 Plattsburgh (1:27.17) PR and Win
April 2012 Flower City (1:29)
May 2012: Run to the Sun (Watertown, NY) 1:33 Win
May 2012 ZOOMA Annapolis (1:31)
Sep 2012: Turning Stone Utica (1:33.33) 2nd Female
Feb: Lake Effect (1:31)
March: Shamrock (1:25.15) PR
April: Nike Women’s DC (1:24.49) PR
May: Run for the Dream (1:28) Win
Sep: RnR VA Beach (1:28.39)
Sep: Scallywompus (San Antonio) 1:28.30 Win
Feb: Lake Effect (1:25.32) Win
March: Shamrock (1:25.29)
April: April Fools (1:23.23) PR
May: NJ half (1:28)
May: Run for the Dream (1:31)
Nov: Harbor Lights 1:41 **Training Long Run
Mar: Shamrock half (1:33.04) *Injured
Aug: RnR Va Beach (1:31)
Oct: Runners World (1:28)
Oct: RnR Philadelphia (1:25.45)
Nov: Philadelphia half (1:25.00)
Some random fun facts:
Coldest: Lake Effect 2013
Worst Weather: Shamrock 2016: Pouring rain, 40 degrees, and windy
- Scallywompus gave out a huge growler for winning.
- Run to the Sun gave out wine tour tickets.
- I think in general the best race swag comes from the Shamrock races. On top of a t-shirt, medal and four free beers they typically give out an additional item. It’s been anything from a hoodie to towel to blanket.
Best logistics: Any race that I don’t have to take a bus or shuttle. (This probably includes all of the smaller ones). For the amount of racers, most of the RNR have been good. The only race I didn’t care for the logistics were Nike Women’s, but I am not a city person, and DC overwhelmed me.
Best Value: If you register early you receive a lot for the Shamrock races. There is lots of food, beer, heating and everything you could want in a race.
Worst Value: Carlsbad. I found the race to be poorly organized, and there wasn’t a heck of a lot for the price of the race. Since it was 120+, it was expensive. I don’t race for “free things” but the race was unorganized as well.
Smallest: Run from the Sun (Probably around 300-400 racers?)
Best On Course Aid: Shamrock, Nike Women’s, RnR. (The pricier ones)
Worst On Course Aid: Run to the Sun: It was a smaller race, but it was hot, and you end up in the middle of cornfields and don’t know if you are going the correct way. I distinctly remember being thirsty during the race, and that doesn’t happen often.
Coolest Medal: Lake Effect 2014 or RnR Va Beach
**Nike Women’s gave out a Tiffany and Co Necklace, but I haven’t worn it. It’s not for me honestly.
Most Zoned Out: Shamrock 2014 or 2016 Where did this race go? In the blink of an eye, I was done.
Both races I had stomach issues. I stopped to use the bathroom during the Turning Stone half, and I felt like I was going to projectile vomit red velvet cake during the NJ half.
Overall Favorite Races:
- Shamrock 2013 It was a lot of fun to watch my dad run the full marathon, hang out with my friends, I Pred and the race is fabulous. Shamrock 2014 and Lake Effect this year are very close runner ups
- Nike Women’s Half because I wasn’t expecting a PR.
- April Fools half 2014 because it gave me the confidence that my fitness was still there.
- April Fools half 2016 because I redeemed myself from my Shamrock and I didn’t talk myself into a negative race. The weather was awful, but I got over it.
Regretable Races: Shamrock 2015. It’s the only race I ran injured, and it wasn’t a smart decision. It set me back in recovery.
States Raced in: NY, VA, TX, MD, NJ, PA (also DC)
I’ve won 6 (Plattsburgh 2012, Run from the Sun, Run for the Dream 2013, Scallywompus, Lake Effect 2014, April Fools 2016)
I’ve placed second or third in 5
I’ve come in places 3-10 in: 7 (My most notable is 9th in Nike Women’s)
And most half marathons I’ve had no placements at all.
Debut half marathon: The Plattsburgh half marathon in April of 2011. I didn’t know what to expect honestly. With less than a full year of running and never having done more than 10 miles beforehand, I had no idea what to expect! I took it out at a pace that seemed maintainable, and it was.
- Flower City (2014)
- Run for the Dream. I would honestly say that Run for the Dream felt a little harder, but that is because it’s also hot and humid.
- Runners World (Curse you Bart)
Most Surprising time: Lake Effect Feb 2014
Most Surprising placement: Nike Half Marathon I was 9th overall. It was not expecting to PR and honestly wasn’t even sure I was going to go all the way to DC alone to race. It was at the peak of my anxiety, and I’m so glad I did.
- Flower City 2012 (cotton top…armpit chaffing)
- Shamrock 2014 (thigh chaffing was awful)
- Run for the Dream 2014: (Thigh Chafing)
- Shamrock 2016 (Heather can validate)
Questions for you:
Have you run any half marathons? How many?
What is your favorite racing distance?