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Inspired Living

Celebration Ride Half Marathon Edition

Sarah Stanley

Day THREE of riding. Day five of being on the road. Day of  SWEATING. And oh yeah, let's run a half marathon. Because its the perfect thing to do BEFORE jumping on a bike and riding 100 miles. BRILLIANT. First, let me backtrack.

Saturday evening after speaking, packing, eating, actually didn't do much of that, doing some wash (thanks to Marriott for a laundry room!) I re-looked at the route. If you recall, the previous 2 routes had me ether circling or arriving at airports (seriously). I was having nightmares that I would end up at LGA or JFK. EEK. Perhaps that should be the next airport code.

In order to get into NYC, I would have to take the ferry. Problem number one: the ferry doesn't run on weekends. Problem number two: I can't ride on water (no matter how much I put my mind to it!). Let the freaking out begin! With about 6 hours till wake up time and, 8 hours till run time and 10 hours till ride time, let's just say "freaking out" was NOT the word that came to mind.

My SAG driver Mike & I pulled out the map, I went online and frantically began researching a NEW route. We kind of found one. It was like playing hopscotch. Only with my life, route numbers and a bike. I had to get some sleep, so off I went. Sweet dreams kid!

5am! Up and at 'em. Had my usual breakfast of oatmeal. This time I did not spill it ON me. Sweet. Walked to the race start with Mike (driver) and Leah (PR support). It was a GORGEOUS morning. A morning that being sleep deprived is worth it.

Ready, Set, Run!

After hanging out in the VIP tent, cheering on the elites (the best thing about being in the VIP tent!), it was coral time. I kind of know what cattle feel like.

The special treatment ;)

A little after 8am, I was running. For the first time in 7 weeks. NOTE: don't always do what I do! Happily, my body went along with the plan. The course started out weaving through the city. A TON of left, then right turns the first 4 miles. Then we ended up back where we started. I love Ben Franklin Parkway. It is lined with flags from all over the world. Made me feel like I was running fast :P

Let's get this party started!

After passing the art museum, the course took us long the river front. Which was totally awesome and offered some much needed shade at this point. I was quite happy to see the 10k sign. Only 106.7 miles to go!

Looking back

During the previous week, people kept asking me what my time goal was. My snarky reply was "not to die". Which is pretty much my answer for every race! But in my head, I was really hoping for a sub 2 hour. For not having run a stitch in 7 weeks (stress fractures) I was just praying to make it to the finish line in one piece.

Whenever I run a race I always try to look at the people around me. They inspire amaze me. One older guy was running with two leg prosthesis. Simply amazing. Who am I to complain?

At mile 10 there was a music band (YAY!) and a guy cheering me on:

Mr. Brooks cheering for us!

If I jump high enough do I get a prize?

It was starting to get hot and I just wanted to get done. Because I knew that my day hadn't really started yet. The finish is on a slight incline and I gave it my all. 1:59:03. Not to shabby. For not running in quite some time, I'm proud of my finish [time]. And I didn't stop one time!

Knew I was fast :P

After being rushing through the finish area (medal, check. Water, check. Cupcake, NO check.) I went back to the VIP tent and quickly updated everyone on Twitter. Because that's what you do :)

The bling!

Then no rest for the weary. I had to walk back to the hotel. I should have counted that as some of my miles! Ha!

Then my REAL day began. And what an epic day it was......