To race or not to race, that is the question

I’ve thinking about and talking about doing the upcoming Platte River Half Marathon which is on April 7th. It was my first postpartum half after I had Ella. It was a PR for me even though the wind was vicious. Overall a nice course, but I didn’t really feel the need to do the same race again. I have this thing lately about repeating races. I just like to experience new courses.

Back to why I’ve been thinking about it, I haven’t done a race since early December. I love the race atmosphere and last year, I loved racing because I got PRs every time. It was exciting to see improvements and run faster, for longer, than I thought I could. This year is not going to be quite the same, but I have still been feeling the need to register for something. It just so happens that my mileage is about perfect for this particular race.

On Monday night, I ran 11 miles. I was planning on doing it over the weekend, but Josh unfortunately ended up working all day Sunday and Saturday was cold and snowy. I ran on the treadmill at the gym for what seemed like the entire evening. I covered the 11 miles at about a 9:40 pace but had to stop three times to go to the bathroom. That darn bladder of mine is under a bit of pressure lately.

I felt like giving up around mile 8.5, you know what kept me going? The thought of this:

Photo: Better be as good as I've imagined.

Yep, I told myself that if I covered the 11 miles I would allow myself to give into my Taco Bell Doritos Locos Taco craving I’ve had for months now. I really wanted those tacos (I had to get one of each naturally). So I kept going.

When I finally finished I felt completely exhausted. My knees hurt a little bit and my IT band was so tight I’m surprised my leg wasn’t stuck in a mid-stride position. I felt like I had just run far longer than the 11 miles I’d just covered. For the first time I felt like maybe I pushed my body a little bit too hard for my current state. Strange since I just did 10 miles a little over a week ago.

I stretched and headed to the drive thru. You know what is sad, it took two times around for me to get into the drive thru. Haha. Just goes to show that in the 5.5 years we’ve lived in Longmont, I’ve never been to the Taco Bell. It is definitely a good thing and so were those tacos. I enjoyed ever unhealthy bite.

Yesterday morning I was stiff, not in pain, but definitely stiff. I still am a bit on the stiff side 36 hours later and still tired. If I can run 11 then surely I’d be able to handle 13.1 miles. It’s just 2.1 miles more. No time/pace pressure, right? After really thinking about why I wanted to do this race, I think the biggest driver is to say I did it. Yeah, I ran a half marathon at 21 weeks pregnant. Bragging rights of course. But the thing is, that isn’t a good reason to do anything.

Is my body going to be in pain and completely exhausted for days afterwards? Am I going to actually pee my pants because the porta potties are just a little bit too far apart? Am I going to get a few miles in and totally regret doing it at all? Is the baby going to feel all stressed out? Those are all going through my mind. Right now I think I’m going to skip this one, but there are still two weeks ahead of me and open spots left.

I guess we’ll see.

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