The Great Scottish Run: Half-Marathon recap

This was not the race I planned on running.  I had trained for 16 weeks. I worked hard.  But in the end, it. . . well it sucked.

The day before I wasn’t feeling well at all.  I was stressed out and anxious about the race and my upcoming trip and my stomach was in knots.  I could barely eat anything all day.  What I did manage to eat was purely carbs at least.

The day of the race I felt fine.  My knee was fine.  My hamstring was fine.  I had a bagel and a coffee and got ready.  I didn’t rush down to George Square as there was no reason for it.  I do wish I had gone a bit sooner, b/c it took forever to find the bag drop, as I was misdirected three separate times to its location.  I then spent about 40 minutes in the queue for the toilets.

When the race started, I was ready and I felt great despite its start up St. Vincent Street and I managed the first mile in 10:48 which is pretty much unheard of for me, especially going uphill.

The next 2 miles involve running along the motorway and you get a really good view of the city.  It was still really crowded at this point as the motorway was narrow (and very bumpy).  People were stumbling a bit and I saw people having to stop b/c other runners were tossing water bottles in the crowded path and people were literally tripping over them.  I was very cautious here and was appalled that runners were behaving in such a way.

Mile 2: 11:15
Mile 3: 12:00

I slowed down a bit in miles 4-5. I was really feeling the uneven road in my right knee and legs.  At this point I was still running but was starting to feel a bit uncomfortable with the road conditions and the hills.  It was a really nice and sunny day, but once I got into Pollock Park I got a bit chilly with the tree coverage.

Mile 4: 13:27
Mile 5: 13:24

It was at this point, somewhere in Pollock Park that my right knee was absolutely done.  I have no idea why this keeps happening.  I’m doing the exercises.  I can only assume it’s something that is occurring in race day conditions that is causing this as the same thing happened in the Women’s 10K this summer.  It must be the uneven roads that we were running on, as opposed to the paths along the river and through Glasgow Green that I run on on a regular basis.  I kept trying to run every few minutes, and every few minutes my knee would tell me no.  I didn’t hurt all that much walking, so I concentrated on walking as fast as I possibly could.  I try to enjoy my surroundings as the parks are lovely, but was just too miserable to do so.  I was very glad for the water/Powerade stations at that point as I had gotten quite thirsty/sweaty throughout the first half of the run and desperately needed hydration.

Mile 6: 14:18
Mile 7: 14:45
Mile 8: 14:24
Mile 9: 16:12

At this point I was in Bellahouston Park and I was cold and grumpy.  I didn’t feel quite right and was feeling really disappointed and frustrated with myself.  I texted Steph and tried not to cry as I reported my failure.  At this point I finally took on more fuel, and that did help a bit as my times did pick up a bit once I had finished my Powerade and chews.

Mile 10: 16:00
Mile 11: 14:54
Mile 12: 15:09
Mile 13: 15:09
Mile 14: 12:05 pace for 3 minutes and 42 seconds
Final time: 3:05:12 🙁

Towards the end I walked with a couple of other women and chatted a bit.  I absolutely forced myself to run the last 400 meters up to Glasgow Green and toward the finish line.  It hurt like a bitch but I was NOT walking across that line.

I feel absolutely terrible and ashamed of my final time.  This was supposed to be a race where I blew my first half’s time out of the water, not beat it by a few minutes.  It is unacceptable that I should be running these times after running off and on for 10 years and consistently for 3.  This is something that needs to be addressed as my times overall are appalling and I feel embarrassed to call myself a runner right now.  I am seriously considering hiring a running coach to see if there is something wrong with how I am running.  I’ve had my gait analysed and nothing was found to be wrong with it; on tape I look just fine. I hope I can figure out what the problem is as I feel like I’m not getting any faster, in fact my 5k times seem to get slower!

I was really glad that Steph met me at the finish.  I was so upset that it took everything I had not to cry right then and there. I walked slowly around to find the bag drop pickup and then on to the subway.  Why we don’t finish the race at George Square is beyond me, b/c I hate having to walk to the subway from the Green.  By then I was done and I didn’t even want to go to Starbucks for a PSL.  That’s how upset I was.

At the finish line

We did stop for coffee once we got back to our stop and once I had that I perked up a bit.  Steph picked up ice cream and eggs for me on our way home, and once I was in the bath I was able to eat something substantial.

I had a massage the following day, and by Wednesday I felt pretty much back to normal.  I spent the past week in London walking everywhere, so I was glad that the half didn’t impact my trip.

Since I’ve been back, I’ve run twice and haven’t had any pain whatsoever. So, who knows?

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