The Houston marathon is a pretty big thing every year. There are 31 charities that are supported and over 33000 participants and almost $2 million raised. If you signed up at the end of the event last year, you were guaranteed a spot for this year. Signing up without knowing what condition you will be in to run in one year is pretty bold. Everyone’s training is different. My preparation consists of running twice a week for 2 and ½ miles (since 2011). I figured I could do a half marathon because I always felt I could just keep going. A friend of mine ran the ½ last year and inspired me to try it. Sadly her health and conditioning isn’t where it needs to be to run this year. Fortunately I have another friend who likes to run that is running and we are going together.
Last weekend I ran my first 10 miles ever in a row. It took me 2 hours. With just 3 additional miles, I’m pretty sure I can do it. This is now officially a bucket list thing for me to do. I always liked bike riding and thought the MS150 would be my bucket list fitness thing, and it still may be. I just didn’t think running would be first. I like to run the 2 and ½ miles a couple of times a week, but it’s not my favorite exercise.
Race packet pickup is the day before at the convention center. They have all kinds of running things to sell. I got a new running belt to hold my phone and keys. They have nutrition tips and advice for dressing. It’s going to be just under 40 degrees. Many people run in shorts in 40 degree weather, NOT ME! Since I ran last weekend in the cold, pants and a jacket with some lip balm should be good! And maybe some ibuprofen.
Experienced runners encourage you to eat pasta before running. Yeah! Eating pasta without feeling guilty! That and keep hydrating. It makes since to go to bed early too. I will be at my friend’s house at 5:30am.
It was cold! On your race bib there is a letter designator with your number that tells you what corral to go to. Our corral started at 7AM, although by the time we actually started it was more like 7:30, it takes that long! There are lots of people that toss jackets and clothing on the streets that are later picked up and donated.
There are so many people that are cheering you on with words of encouragement and support. They mark the course with mile markers and have water, Gatorade and bathrooms along the way. Lots of people hold up signs and there was a lot of music played along the way.
They close off many streets and the course went around downtown and into some neighborhoods and Montrose. I stayed with my friends for about 3 miles then kept my own pace behind.
Young and old run! So fun to see all different people!
The most exciting thing for me was to see the 10 mile mark and then the George R. Brown center roof top red pipes. I knew the finish line was close!
They gave us finisher shirts and a metal! And the grocery store HEB provided a very nice hot meal! Eggs, a biscuit, banana, sausage, yogurt and hot chocolate! AWESOME!
My family tracked me online. The bib has a sensor on it and every so often on the course there is a marker you cross and it records your progress and makes estimates for when you will hit the next one.