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Mary Black Foundation Y2Y Half Marathon Race Report

Yesterday, I finished my first half marathon, the Mary Black Foundation Y2Y half marathon! Words can’t express how proud I am of this accomplishment. I still can’t believe that I actually did it (even though I have a finisher’s medal that proves that I did).
For the first six weeks of my training, I followed Hal Higdon’s Novice 1 training program. Then, life intervened, and I had to adapt if I still wanted to run the Mary Black Foundation Y2Y Half Marathon. I adjusted my training, focusing on my long runs and adding in some walk intervals. I guess it worked!

 

Friday afternoon I stopped by the Middle Tyger YMCA for packet pickup. For a small race (fewer than 100 participants), this was a great packet. Not only did I get a beautiful t-shirt, I got a coupon for Dick’s Sporting Goods (which I used to get a Garmin Forerunner 220!) and the Waffle House.
Saturday morning, I had to get up before 5:00, so I could eat some Cheerios and a banana and drink a couple cups of coffee. Then, it was time to assemble all my gear and be ready to meet my parents’ friends Judy and Dennis who were picking me up at 6:15. Dennis has done tons of half marathons, and it was great to go with someone so experienced. Here we are just before heading to the start line:
The race was incredibly well run: the course was marked well and there were ample water stops. Luckily the first transition area was at a business that let us use their facilities! This course, however, was HILLY! I think we went over every single hill between Duncan and Spartanburg.

 

In spite of the hills, I was able to keep up with my goal pace (an incredibly slow 12:00 per mile) for the first 10 miles. I even felt like I was holding back a lot. Once I hit the 10 mile mark, I knew I could finish the race, so I let myself go a bit faster. I finished strong and had a blast!

 

Judy, Dennis, and I enjoyed the live music, numerous bagels and bananas, and tons of water at the finish line. We stayed around for the awards to cheer for everyone. Dennis even got second in his AG!
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