I’ve got a little bit of race envy today. It’s silly since I just ran a big race and got a PR and had a great time. But the Indianapolis Mini Marathon is this weekend, and ooh, I want to run it so bad! I see all my Indy friends posting Facebook pictures of the race and I am oh so jealous. There are a few good reasons why I’m not, mainly I just ran a marathon. When it was time to sign up for the mini (around December, it sells out), I was already throwing around the idea of going to Nashville and I knew I couldn’t do both. And then I realized I already have a trip planned to Indy later this month and 2 flights to Indy in a month = very expensive.
But, I do want to run the Mini soon, because it’s definitely a special race for me. I didn’t say good! Just….special.
This was my first half marathon, and I ran it just days before my 10th birthday. I know there’s a lot of controversy out there about kids running races and all, but there no doubt that I wanted to do this race. My dad was a pretty active runner while I was growing up and every year he trained for and ran the Mini Marathon in May. And I was daddy’s little girl and I wanted to do it too!
I wasn’t actively involved in any sports at the time (I mean, I was active, but nothing organized), so they figured, why not? They told me that if I signed up and they paid the registration fee, though, I had to commit and actually train for the race. And they would pay for half of the N64 that I so desperately wanted. “Ok!” says 10-year old (dumb) Steph.
The training started at the end of January….and it was terrible. Unlike South Carolina, where we train outside in the winter and not in the summer, it is cold in February in Indiana. So, there was a lot of running on the treadmill, which probably explains why I hate treadmill running so much now. Clearly, I was traumatized!
I definitely drove my dad nuts. We had a treadmill in our basement, so he would send me downstairs to run and I would take my damn sweet time getting ready. Then he would come down and tell me to get started, so I’d start the treadmill. When I got tired, I wanted to stop, and he would make me keep going. Then I would cry, then we would fight, and it was all downhill from there.
Going outside wasn’t any better. When I got tired, I would want to stop and walk, which generally wasn’t allowed unless it was a longer run, so I would cry. And now we have streets near my parents house named “boo hoo boulevard” and “I can’t parkway”, at least, that’s what they call them. That’s why my parents were so surprised when I signed up for the Disney Princess Half. They would ask “did you tell Jen she was mean?” and I would say, “No! Because Jen isn’t a slave driver! She lets us walk!” Hah.
I have no doubt that my dad hated this experience as much as I did. The only redeeming factor about the training was that after our weekend longer runs, he would take me to Cracker Barrel for breakfast, which was a Saturday morning tradition for us. Breakfast always helps.
So, finally! Race day comes. We head downtown and get into the crowd at the race start. I remember how surprised I was at how many people were there! If you’ve never experienced a crowd of 20,000+ people before, which I hadn’t, it can be a shock!
The race itself was actually pretty uneventful. After all the buildup of terribleness of the training, it actually went fairly well. It was a rainy day, though it was more of a drizzling rain than the torrential downpour we faced last weekend! I think the coolest part about the race is that the course actually went on to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, so getting to run on the track was pretty sweet. I think they’ve since changed the course to take it off the actual track, but I’m not sure.
I did have to stop to use the bathroom and they had the real bathrooms open at thespeedway to use, so we stopped. There was a huge line, so we probably lost 5 minutes doing that. My dad made fun of me later for that, but some things can’t wait!
The finish: 2:35:20
Awwww. Aren’t we cute? That lady over on the left doesn’t look so good, though. I think that blue shirt I have on was actually my dad’s because it looks huge on me!
So, that’s my first half marathon.
About 2 weeks prior to the race, my parents signed me up for Noblesville Swim Club’s swim clinic. I liked to swim, but I didn’t like putting my face in the water without goggles, and my current swim lessons didn’t allow them. I loved the swim clinic, so as soon as this race was over, they cancelled my other swim lessons and signed me up for the swim team. I definitely decided that running wasn’t for me and, except for a brief stint in cross country, I did not do any significant running for the next 13 years. Forget that running crap!