Monday, April 19, 2010

A Little Bit of Heartbreak: Rutgers Half Marathon

I knew before I even got to the race that I wasn’t going to PR. (For those who are still wondering, PR stands for “Personal Record.” And yes, it is being used here as a verb.) I had been feeling tired and “out-of-it” all week, and mentally I was simply not as excited about this race as I had been for the one in DC (in spite of the fact that I was running the Rutgers race with friends, and I ran DC alone).

Race day arrived, and despite a foreboding forecast, the sun was shining and the skies were clear. The course turned out to be impressively flat and scenic, and the race was well-attended. All-in-all, excellent conditions.

Unfortunately, good conditions weren’t enough. I ran a time slightly faster than my Queens half-marathon time, but considerably slower than my most recent DC time, clocking in at 1:37:05.

The real disappointment came when I looked at the race results. I came in 4th in my age group—which is great!—but if I had run my DC time in this race, I would have taken 3rd. Third place! I would have placed in a race with over 3,000 participants! It is a weird dichotomy to feel happy to have run a sub-7:30 pace while feeling sorry that I didn’t run as fast as I “could have.”

Could I have pushed myself harder? In hindsight I want to say yes, but in actuality there is just no knowing. Next race, though, I am going to check my watch. Looking back at my split times, I was on pace to PR up until the last 5k of the race! So if nothing else, at least there was a lesson learned.

Race LengthFinishing TimeAverage PaceGender Place (All Women) Age Group Place (F20-24)
13.1 miles1:37:057:24/mile 22/1351 4/183


Mike S. said...

That's amazing! Don't be so hard on yourself. Fourth in your age group - that's

joely said...

I know you are younger than I am so let me offer some sage elderly advice. Life will be full of moments that are not exactly as you hoped them to be, but take time to savor all the moments. All the moments, disappointing or not, and remember:Ones best success comes after their greatest disappointments and my personal favorite Vonnegut line: Maturity is a bitter disappointment for which no remedy exists, unless laughter can be said to remedy anything.

You will have many more moments to fill your story book and you might be surprised at the records you break when you get older. I am running a marathon next week, number 2 for me and I am 38. I still have records to break. So keep the heartbreak at a little, you should be proud.

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