2.22.2011

Reflecting Back on the Run for the Whales

Course Map by Pacific Whale Foundation
This year my Run for the Whales was the half marathon course through Wailea, Maui, Hawaii. My struggle was overcoming the uncertainty I had about my body, its performance, and if I could trust it to hold up to the challenge.

Shortly after Christmas I sustained an injury that was best diagnosed as a muscle or tendon tear in my left glutes. It was painful and knocked me off my feet. I questioned if I would ever get my running legs back and decided to train smart. My pre-race mileage and runs were cut back. I focused on letting my muscles heal through proper nutrition, rest, massages, and appropriate training. Then it was race day.

Shortly into the race I felt some minor discomfort in my hip but it quickly warmed up and responded well. I was running and loving it! However, this course was tough! The inclines may not have all been steep but they were long. It challenged my endurance and faith in my running capabilities but I pushed on knowing my Dad was by my side in spirit. And surprisingly enough, I was doing just fine. I may have felt more struggle than my previous half marathon, but I kept going mile after mile.

Then the true challenge hit me. The final miles were in what we call the Maui Rollercoasters near Big Beach. The ups and the downs made my hip ache and my pace, as well as most others it appeared, slowed.  I could see the same struggle on the faces of others and knew I wasn't alone. I continued running, pushing myself to go that final mile as strong as I could. I wasn't worried about a new PR, I wanted to finish strong.

And the end result? I did finish strong. I may have hurt like I never did in my first half marathon but I was proud of my accomplishment. I finished. I regained faith in my body. I regained trust in my training. I was proud. So what did I do post-race? I enjoyed the post-race awards for a bit and then headed home to host my daughter's 3rd birthday party!

Date: 2/5/2011
Time: 2:02:23
Pace: 9:21
Overall: 105 of 190
Division (F 30-39): 18 of 31

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