(#4) Palm Springs Half Marathon – Part 1 (Walking On That Weak Ankle, Baby)

February 15, 2012

Aurora doing some dance walking along the Palm Springs 2012 half marathon course
Wendy caught me doing a little dance-walking

This was a struggle. In case you haven’t read, I was coming off an injury.

I’m sure it also didn’t help that I’ve been taking such awesome (read: awful) care of myself this week.

I was really good during my first week on crutches. In my second week, my microwave broke. I took that (mixed with my inability to run) as a grand excuse for an all out free-for-all with ice cream and Doritos …for the entire week!

Even though I had awesome accommodations this weekend, for some reason I had tons of trouble sleeping. (Think that could possibly have something to do with my extreme lack of exercise and poor eating habits of late?)

Around 3am, I had some ankle pain going on. I was a bit worried that perhaps I’d made the wrong choice – that I possibly should’ve brought my crutches, or borrowed a wheelchair. But I knew I’d be fine. I stretched, moved my ankle around, took a quick walk around the living room, and went back to sleep (waking up 3 more times before the morning!).

a big mountain in front of us at the Palm Springs half marathon 2012When I got to the gear check, I was happy to see my friends Wendy & Marty.  As I was talking to Wendy, I got a tap on the shoulder. It was Jeanette (of Jeanette & Johannah), happy to see I’d made it out of the bike ride alive. She let me know I’d convinced Johannah to do the half marathon!

Going by the advice of my doctor and the pleading of my ankle, my plan was to walk the entire race – no jogging.

When the half marathon started, I walked across the start line, which was really anti-climactic. “Oh, here I go walking toward the start. This is so exciting… Now here I go crossing the start(!)… aaaand, here I go walking some more. Huh.”

I felt so silly walking through the crowd of cheering spectators lined up at the start.

My walking pace wasn’t too bad at the beginning. I started off doing 15 to 16-minute miles.

close up of the Palm Springs half marathon medal 2012I tried to keep it interesting by doing a lot of dance walking.

There were tons of turnarounds in this race, making it seem as though a field of runners was always going by me.

It’s possible that some of them thought, “What’s the deal with that silly girl?” But they all had their own race to worry about (as did I), so I don’t think anyone gave it much thought. Who cares how silly I look when I’m trying to have fun?

As the race went on, I started to get slower. Miles 7 and 8 took a little over 17 minutes each. I was in some pain after mile 8. It’s possible I was pushing myself a little hard for my first weekend off crutches, but once I was 8 miles into a half marathon, there was certainly no way I was stopping (especially when there was no time limit)!

Was I able to make it through those last 5 miles? Find out tomorrow.

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