Thursday, May 16, 2013

Maryland Half Marathon 2013

Back on Valentine's Day, I decided to sign up for the Maryland Half Marathon in Fulton, Maryland (just west of Laurel). I wanted to raise money for the Greenebaum Cancer Center at the University of Maryland Medical Center. The added benefit of registering on that date, was I received a red Brooks running hat with the MD Half Marathon emblem on it.

I picked up my packet a week ago, the shirt was really cool for a race shirt. It is Under Armour tech material and in a light chartreuse color. My only complaint is that it's a little thin for someone busty like me.

I drove the course earlier in the week and realized it was full of rolling hills. My current PR for a half marathon is 2:19:10. I really wanted to beat that, but I knew it wasn't going to happen here. I figured I would give it a good try and started with the 2:10 pace group. They started out way too fast for me at 9:15 for a relatively steep uphill section. The pollen and pace got to me at about 2 miles, so I lost the pace group and just decided to go it on my own. This worked well for me because I started wheezing. When I finally caught my breath, I figured I would be okay. 

When I say the course was hilly, I mean it. Here is about the only flat section of the course.

I'm not complaining. Aside from the very beginning and very end of the course, we ran through some very beautiful terrain. We ran past farms. We ran past ponds. We ran through the woods. We ran through beautiful older communities. We ran through beautiful newer communities. There was a young boy dressed as a banana on the course and he made me giggle a bit.

The rain held off until somewhere between miles 9 and 10 for me. The little shower we got was more refreshing than annoying. I'm glad it wasn't a driving rain for the entire race. About 11 miles, my unsleeved calves could no longer handle the hills and started cramping like they did during the Annapolis Half. I had to switch to walk/run. That last cruel hill up to the finish line hurt.

I finished in 2:24:55. I can deal with that. It's not a new PR, but when I look at the results as a percentage of runners I beat, it is a significant improvement. Not to mention, the winner did it in 1:19, which is slow for a half marathon. I honestly think that it was hillier than my first leg of Ragnar DC last year. That being said, I plan on running it again next year. I raised $400 for the Greenebaum Cancer Center and would like to thank all of my donors. I ran the race in memory of a family friend who passed away from breast cancer a little over 3 years ago. Next time, I'm going to write her name on my arm. I saw lots of people who were doing that and I wish I had thought about it.

The medal was very cool. The V is for the 5th anniversary.

Oh, I also proved to myself that I could run a half in the morning and go to a wedding in the afternoon and not fall over asleep by 6pm. My calves and quads hurt for a couple of days after the race. Next time, calf sleeves are a must!

On to the next challenge: The Crofton Kiwanis 10K on June 8th.


  1. Congratulations! What a great accomplishment!

  2. Congratulations!!!! I am on a waiting list for a Ragnar in February 2014. We start in Miami and run to the Keys!