Yesterday I woke up at 5:15 to get ready for the Inaugural Hokie Half Marathon right here in Blacksburg. It was really weird to be sleeping in my own bed and be getting ready in my house for such a big race -- normally I have traveled and am staying in a hotel.
The race started around 7 am so Mom, Sadie and I left the house at 6:15. It was about 49 degrees, which sounds colllldddd but when you're about to run 13.1 miles it sounds awesome! I kept my sweatshirt on until about 5 minutes before the gun.
I met up with one of my really good friends Sara and her husband Dave who I've done a couple training runs with! She is awesome!!
Me, Sara & her husband Dave
This race is new and therefore the course is new. Part of the course is on the Huckleberry Trail which is the most popular trail in town...or rather the only one. #smalltownprobs
However the first 4 miles were on a main road which I never run on because it's so busy so it felt weird to be running there. There was only 1 hill in the first 4 miles and it was pretty minor. On the Huckleberry, which is 6 miles, there are about 4ish hills, most of which are pretty decent. Again, though, I train on this trail so I knew when I needed to push and when I needed to save some energy.
About to get on the Huckleberry:
I took Gu at miles 4 and 10. Kind of odd timing, but I had to go with the flow. All worked out well with water stops!
The course had high school bands and small musical groups throughout which was really fun! I'm all about crowd support so it was nice to hit the pockets of people cheering on the sideline. Special shout out to the rescue crew at the halfway point on the Huckleberry - y'all were awesome!
The last 3.1 miles were on neighborhood roads, back on the Huckleberry for a teeny bit - which was a little tight since there were people running in both directions, but fun since we got some high-fives - and then into the Corporate Research Center for the finish. The first half of the last mile was flat, but then you hit an uphill. I knew this was coming so I made sure to keep some juice in my legs for it, and I was fine. The last .2 or so was completely downhill. An AWESOME finish through a huge crowd of cheering and another band. My high school coach, who is the ring leader for all of the races around here, was announcing people as they finished. He's great!
My finishing time was 2:03:00. I'm super happy with this time on a hilly course & being in the middle of marathon training. Sidenote: it was ALL worth it for the 2 shirts we got AND the sweet Hokie Bird medal!
Overall, this was an awesome first Hokie Half and I can't wait to run this race again and again!!