How I Accidentally Ran a Half-Marathon

Yes, you read that correctly. I accidentally ran a half-marathon. (I ended up covering 13.18 miles in 2:19:35…but we’ll get to that.)

I’ve run a half-marathon every year since 2012, when I ran the Disney Princess Half-Marathon. I was just remarking the other day that I probably wouldn’t run a half this year, due to the hassle of scheduling a race around my classes. I did run the 2016 Rock ‘n Roll Philly Half-Marathon, but it was the day after a 12-hour shift at the hospital, and it was honestly a grueling experience I do not want to repeat.

(Don’t be fooled by my smile. It was tough, and slow.)

I’d pretty much resigned myself to breaking my (official) streak.

I was having one of those mornings where being in my head felt pretty awful. Luckily, running has been a pretty solid way for me to shake it off. I started my watch with no particular goal in mind. I would just run until I felt okay.

Now, you have to keep in mind, I haven’t been running regularly lately – maybe once a week. So it was pretty wild that I managed to run such a good “race.”

The first mile of a run almost always feels shaky to me. My body seems to be saying, “You’re doing this again? Why, please? You’re so close to the couch!”

At mile three, I still felt terrible. I hoped it was just taking time for me to get in the groove. Mile five was no better, so I kept going. I was two neighborhoods away from my own during mile eight, but still no closer to feeling better, so I kept going.

This flooding water fountain was a heavenly sight at mile 10.

I started feeling a bit better (and a bit exhausted!) around mile 12. But then I was so close to a half! So I turned around at the entrance to my neighborhood (which would have left me at 12.25 miles) to do a little loop. That twelfth mile slayed me. I just wanted to be done. Physically, I felt okay. Mentally, I was spent. I felt like…what was the point? Why did I just run a half for absolutely no reason?!

You can kind of see my lack of training in my splits. Yikes. (9:50, 9:44, 9:56, 9:50, 10:08, 10:18, 9:54, 10:13, 11:09, 11:23 (WATER!), 11:45 (wait…I still have to run?), 12:01 (okay, I’m ready to be done), 11:15.)

Well…I wanted to prove I could make it. I’m just making it through every day. Most days I am just satisfied I’m surviving. But sometimes, I’m pretty freakin’ happy with myself, and today is one of those days.

I may break my official streak, but I’m happy to say I’ve still run my 2017 race, even if it was unplanned.