Virginia Beach RnR Half Recap

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This past Sunday I lined up for my fourth Virginia Beach Rock and Roll Half Marathon. While I ran the Shamrock Half Marathon for fun earlier in the year, this past Sundays race was actually the first half I have raced healthy in almost two years. It had been that long! So I’ll be honest here and admit, I was scared.  Training has been going well so I should have felt confident but the lack of recent race experience had questions rambling through my mind. What if I bonk? What if I have a personal worst? What if I hate every mile? Turns out I never bonked, I didn’t have a personal worst, and most importantly I loved every mile.

The weather for this race is consistently bad every year.  With that in mind, my coach and I set a good goal of 1:25-ish. Maybe faster, maybe slower, but the real point was to shake the rust off my racing legs and mind, erase any sort of doubt that I am not where I need to me and quite simply, get ready for that racing pain again. Mentally I needed a springboard for a great Fall season.

Race morning the Mr. and I arrived at the start by 6:00, in time to go into the indoor warm up area. Apparently for RnR even if you run well under the VIP/elite standard time, you don’t actually get to use the VIP/elite bathrooms that you qualified for, but I was graciously given a wrist band by someone who didn’t need theirs to wear so that I could use the restrooms that I arguably did but didn’t qualify for (makes sense right?! Nope).  Very grateful for the gifted bands because my stomach was in knots. I was able to stretch out and have some quiet time before warming up with a great friend, Michele G. After the warm up, it was time to line up. I got to see a few of my favorites including Hollie! Something about hearing the Star Spangled Banner, but I instantly calmed down and felt ready to go.  The first few miles were a breeze.  I saw one of the best cheer teams I’ve ever had twice within the first 5 miles and knew they would be waiting at mile 12 for me as well. When I started to fade a bit from 9-11 I told myself, just get to 12!! Pic of them below.

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We had rain in our eyes for a good part of the race. If it had been a goal race I may have been frustrated but luckily I was able to just keep chugging along. The only thing that was bothersome is that I couldn’t find anyone to work with until the very last mile. I never expected in a race as large as this for us all to string out like that but I spent just about 12 miles running alone. Thank gosh for the amazing spectators who braved it out in the rain and wind.

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Last time I ran this race was a death march after mile 8 and I ended up in the medical tent. That was in the back of my mind in this race until about mile 6.  I knew by then that while I wasn’t running my fastest half ever, that I wasn’t going to bonk either. I was able to relax a bit and caught and passed a big pack of runners.  A few miles later though at 9  I started to suffer. It was a bit physical and a bunch mental. It was a mistake on my part and something to keep in mind for my next half in October. Not having a specific goal pace in mind was unusual for me and it was easy for me to tell myself my pace was on track when really it was slipping a bit. I lost focus and let up quite a bit until mile 12 when I saw my friends including Mr.Law again. They were a huge, awesomely obnoxious motivation and I wish I could bring them to every mile of every race I ever run again. I instantly picked up the pace like I should have done miles ago (live and learn) and finished strong even though I was out kicked by a good friend in the last 400, ha.  I finished 8th female in 1:25:42. Well off my PR (1:20:08) but I was honestly thrilled with my performance.  It was exactly the confidence booster I needed at this point.  My goal for my half (Crawlin Crab Half) in one month is significantly faster.

On a post race walk with the family.

After brunch with friends we went home and thought I would collapse but instead we went on family walk. You can get an idea from the sky the blustery day we had.  That little girl and her brothers start school this week and I selfishly believe that will be a huge benefit to my training. The next race up is an out of state race this next weekend. It’s shorter but hilly so good practice for me for the Philly Marathon rollers.  I’ll be better about updating now that school is in session so I will let you know how that one goes. Thank you all for reading and thank you to everyone who sent kind words on social media.  Have a great week all!!

 

 

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22 thoughts on “Virginia Beach RnR Half Recap

  1. I’m really happy for you Kris. You ran a good race and I’m glad it went well for you. The humidity was no joke, especially in the later miles.

    Of course it’s always great to see you at races. I think it’s impossible to compare racing in that weather to racing a PR. I should have asked if you had any other half marathons/races planned before Philly.

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  2. Great race! I impulsively signed up on Saturday at the expo and it was my first post partum half after having the little one 4 months ago. I didn’t pr but was happy with my time as well. Writing up a recap today : ) Hope the kids have a great first back to school week!

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  3. I love your race recaps! Congrats on a great first race back!

    That picture of you is just rock solid. When I run my next half in a couple of weeks, I’m going to imagine that I look just like that when I run. 😉

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  4. YAY Kris! This makes me so happy to read. You did what your body asked and you took the pressure off, and look what happened! Exactly what should have….you loved it!!! This is how I try to approach all my races now, and I feel so much more at peace. Thank you for sharing, I can’t wait to see what happens in the future 🙂 You look SO strong!

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  5. Congratulations on your race and an amazing time, especially in the heat and humidity. Definitely not PR conditions but that’s okay, you were still relaxed and well trained and it paid off for a great tune-up race to get that 1:25 :). I had quite a few friends who ran this race (both blogger friends and also a few local people) and they seem to like it. It does stink that elites cannot use the elite facilities unless they pay. I know R&R wants to make everyone feel like an elite (everyone who can afford to, that is- and it’s their race series so I guess that’s their right/decision), but I feel like someone who runs a qualifying time for that heat deserves those perks at no additional charge. Hooray for the extra wristband to let you sneak into that potty.

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  6. I’m so happy for you that you had a great race! Enjoy training during the back to school months; you’re a great Mom who puts her family first and I think you’re allowed to feel selfishly happy for some quality, uninterrupted training for a while 😉

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