My first Half!

Hello all and welcome to my first half-marathon! I was so excited to finally be signed up and ready for my longest race to date. My mom, my little brother, my mom’s boyfriend, his two children as well as me all ran the race this past weekend, which we soon found out was harder than imagined.

Almost to my hometown!

My little brother, Stephen and I decided that instead of flying, we would drive down to West Palm Beach so that we could pass by our home town of Cocoa Beach, FL and see our grandparents on the way down. Once in Florida we contacted our grandparents to set up a lunch date, eventually coming to the conclusion of Chili’s at 1.

Love seeing family

After an hour with them for lunch we kept on our way, unfortunately we had to continue the rest of our trip in a horrible rain storm that cost us another 45 minutes or so of drive time since we had to drive so slow through the torrential downpour.

My habitat

Thank goodness for an extremely early start that morning, which allowed us to be able to have an hour or two on the sand and in the salty water before we headed back home for a wonderfully home cooked dinner and much needed rest before our big day! On either side of this photo are a few men fishing off the shoreline, which meant no wandering unless you wanted to get caught in their hooks!

Momma's oatmeal!

What an early start! Up at 4 am and left the apartment with everyone in the car by 4:45. But thankfully my mom was awake enough to make everyone oatmeal with milk, brown sugar, and of course delicious blueberries. Since the race was an hour away from my mom’s place and since I was extremely tired, I decided to take a quick nap in the back seat, little did I know, this nap would help me tremendously. haha.

As soon as we stepped out of the cars, bugs immediately covered us in bites, so we ran for the first can of bug spray we could find. Luckily we were one of the first groups to get there so we took full advantage of the small amount of bug spray available. Once most of the people got there, announcments were given and people were given instructions on how to run the race. For us half-marathon people, we would have to go around the trails four times, not the best news I had heard that day, until I found out what kind of landscape we were supposed to trench through.

We are at the beginning of the race, and Stephen, the boy who works out every single day and beasts at everything he does, notices this one lady who he soon dubs as “The Tank” due to her high muscle mass and extremely fit body. He says to me, “I swear if she passes me I’m going to be so mad!” haha gotta love that spirit!

BANG! and we are off! we start out on a gravel trail with trees on either side of us, which gives us protection from the florida sun. I see the trail leading us into the woods, which I was fine with until we came upon the rivers. The trail bottlenecks and everyone comes to a standstill while we try to crawl across two logs over the first river, I am happy that I didn’t have to get wet on that obstacle. A few minutes later, we come across another river/creek that does not have a platform for us to go across, so I jump as far across as I can, which is a little over half the creek, and waddle through the rest of the water and mud to the other side, luckily not losing any shoes in the process. immediately following the second body of water is a large mud trap with tiny roots being our only way across, so doing my best not to get muddy, which is a bit unsuccessful, I make it to the other side, with dirt covering my shoes and calves.

Me slowly getting over that stupid ramp 🙂

Just let me tell you! Running through bushes and down trails that are wide enough for one person to fit, and to go up ramps, bridges, hills, and jump off of rails can get your seriously tired after only two laps! The most exciting lap was my last lap which consisted of an egret flying away from me in fright, a squirrel belly flopping on the trail directly in front of me (yes belly flopping onto the ground from the trees above), and a 3 foot black snake crossing my path. All those thing can kinda get to you when your “in the wild”. Yes I know a trail isn’t necessarily the wild, but compared to city life it’s the closets thing I’ve can relate it to haha.

Stephen "The Machine"

After I finish the race I find out that Stephen had finished THIRD PLACE! How amazing is that? I dont yet have the pictures of all of us together at the end of the race with our medals but they are coming soon! CONGRATULATIONS STEPHEN, MOM, RICH, & JOSH! You guys are awesome!