Saturday, April 10, 2010
I did it. . . again! Yep, my third half-marathon completed, over, done. Hallelujah! I've actually been dreading this one for weeks. My running partner, Kenna, has been feeling a little "under the weather" off and on for the last few weeks and we've kind of slacked on our training during the winter, so I just didn't feel ready for the Olathe Marathon.
However, I was pleasantly surprised with our endurance---and the course wasn't too bad; it was a beautiful day and there were only a few minor hills. (Unlike the Kansas City course which makes you run uphill for around 8 miles or something horrible.)
As I said earlier, this was my third half and I've improved my time with each one. Of course, if I didn't improve, this post wouldn't have such a positive spin. :) Now granted, I still have a long way to go before I truly feel like "a runner," and I still want to improve my race pace. Hopefully, I can find the time (and perseverance) to keep working toward a time I can really be proud of. . . because right now I'm just happy to finish!
And now for the educational part of this post. (Couldn't leave you without some nugget of information, could I?)
According to legend, the name Marathon comes from the story of Pheidippides, a Greek messenger who was sent from the battlefield of Marathon to Athens to announce that the Persians had been defeated in the Battle of Marathon (August or September, 490 BC.) Apparently this dude, Pheidippides, ran all the way without stopping, made his announcement of victory and then promptly died--which is how anyone would feel after running a marathon. (And that is why I will never run more than a half. . . Hee Hee.) In 1876, one of my favorite poets, Robert Browning wrote the poem "Pheidippides". Browning's poem, his composite story of the aforementioned summary, became part of late-19th century popular culture and was accepted as a historic legend.
The half-marathon is, obviously, half the distance of the marathon and measures out at 1,097.5 meters, about 13.1 miles. The first two times I ran the half, at least 2 marathon runners finished in a faster time than it took me to run half the distance. YIKES. I was slightly embarrassed by that. . . but it didn't happen this last time and I'm hoping to avoid that little issue the next time I run as well. Below are the world records for 13.1 miles. Simply amazing to me.
The male world record is 58:23, set by Zersenay Tadese of Eritrea on March 21, 2010, in Lisbon, Portugal.
The female world record is 1:06:25, set by Lornah Kiplagat of the Netherlands on October 14, 2007, in Udine, Italy.
Needless to say, I'm not even close. . . and that's okay. Until the next time. . . I'm wishing for nice weather and a more devoted training regimen.
I'm posting this cheetah picture as inspiration for my next half-marathon. . . any suggestions on where I should run my next one? Hawaii would be nice--don't you think?!?