We tossed around a few ideas but settled for Empire because Syracuse isn't that far away which made it cheaper and easier to get to. I ran this race in its inaugural year 2011 so I knew it was an easier course and that it would be a good "back in the swing of things" race for Meg.
John was also running the race with his friend/coworker so it made it easier in the morning since we both had to get up (also made it easier for me to sleep while he drove...). It was a very early and very cold morning, we got to the race around 7 and just tried to stay as warm as possible.
I ran without a watch, I didn't want to or need to know pace or time or distance- this wasn't my race. I was going to go whatever pace Meg was going, and maybe push her a little in the end if I could. Her previous half marathon PR was 1:43ish so we guessed she would be around 1:46-1:55ish based on not running as much since having Alden and just generally not running much for a long time(she had to take a lot of time off while trying to get pregnant).
We took the first few miles easy, I have no idea how easy but it was comfortable and I was like "hey this non-racing-race thing isn't so bad". We chatted every few minutes just keeping company and laughing along the way. I ditched my gloves around mile 3, it warmed up a little once we were running and the sun was on us. I was still glad I had some good layers on though.
|Encouraging her through the finish! I got yelled at for my bib|
being under my Saucony Palladium Jacket--Whoops!
Once we got to the turn around I saw a light go on in Meg's head. She looked at me and said she wanted to start picking some girls off (*Inner happy dance...you really are my sister! Let's go get em!*). We started picking up the pace a little (again, I have no idea how much) and slowly picked people off on the way back. I even got to high-five John when we passed him coming towards us on the way back, this made me smile.
Once we got to 10, I started picking it up and pointing out people for her to work on passing (this is something I do later on in races to motivate me and keep me moving). She started getting tired (and telling me so), so I just tried to keep reminding her that Alden was waiting at the finish, and that she has done this before and can do it again.
Within the last mile she kept looking at her watch...a LOT. I kept telling her to stop, that it didn't matter and to just keep running. We kept picking people off, and finally with about quarter mile to go...she says "I think I can PR". I was so shocked because I had no idea what pace we had been going, but I didn't question it and said "LETS GO". I really pushed her the last little bit, and grabbed her arm and got her to the finish. She missed her PR by like 20 seconds, 6 months after having a baby, and not running over 10 miles in probably 2 years. Very proud sister moment, very proud.
After we finished, we had the BEST volunteer ever give us our medals and hugs with a smile....Heather was being an awesome person and volunteered at the race, knowing I was going to see her at finish definitely made my day :)
And the other amazing thing at the finish line.....
|I have to give props to myself for dressing myself in the dark at 4:45 AM...I actually matched. [All Saucony gear: Scoot Capris, Kinvara 3, Kinvara socks, Spark tank, Drylete performance top, Pallidium jacket and Velocity run hat]|
and my all time favorite...
|SMILES ALL AROUND!|
I'm a very proud sister and auntie!
We finished in 1:43:49 (sub-8 pace), and I can't tell you how proud of my big sister I am. Pacing with her was easy- I didn't have to convince her to run, she wanted to. I didn't have to put up with tantrums, or whining even when she got tired. I didn't have to tell her not to stop when I know she wanted to, because that isn't something she would do. She was grateful for the support and showed it, and I was grateful to have the chance to give it.
Do you have a sibling/relative you have run with before?
Have you ever paced someone for a race before?
Congrats to your sister!! Your nephew is adorable.ReplyDelete
My sister does not run but I wish she would consider it.
Thanks! It's nice to be able to run with her once in a while, but not all the time (I couldn't run with anyone ALL the time :) I hope you can convince your sister... have her do a 5k maybe?Delete
I'm actually signing up to be an official pacer for the Charleston Half Marathon, but we will be going a lot slower than you guys (I don't think our race offers a pace group for that pace even). I know it will be a struggle for me to run slowly as well. Not that I'm ever very fast, but I would be pacing the 2:15 or 2:30 group.ReplyDelete
The pictures are so great- especially the one with your nephew in it. I'm sure that having kids at the finish motivates moms a lot when running races, and it sounds like you guys had a good one. That's a super speedy race for post-pregnancy, but I think fast times just run in your family (no pun intended) hehe.
Thats very nice of you to be a pacer!Delete
I think having her son at the finish was her biggest motivation- I mean.. he's too cute! LOL not that I am biased:)
So awesome Laura! Congrats to your sister on her first post-baby run and your nephew is soooooo cute!!!!!ReplyDelete
Woah!!! Awesome. the both of you!ReplyDelete
I paced Michelle earlier this year at a 5K race...I got her a good time but I'm pretty sure she hated me for a little while.ReplyDelete
There's a women's half coming up in town and they are looking for volunteers, including pace bunnies...I'm thinking that I may see about doing that, could be fun and I've wanted to help with a race for a while now.
You just want a chance to run with all the ladies at that race! Ha :) I hope you can do it! I'm sure you would make a great pacer!Delete
What a great experience for both of you!ReplyDelete
AWE that looks like so much fun and I'm glad you did it. You are your sister look like you are having a blast but it seriously looks cold as @#$%^ up there. Am I ready for NY cold? No. HA. I love the post race photos with the baby...so freaking cute. I can't wait to see you racing again!ReplyDelete
So much fun! Congrats to your sister! I ran with my sister in her very first 5K and she's now done a few since. Doing that run with her was one of my favorites.ReplyDelete
What a good thing to do together! Funny you mentioned that about whiny people...when I trained for my marathon I remember my last 20 miler (that turned to 17...) and Tyler ran it with me. never having run over 10 miles before. Yet somehow I was still the one bitching & complaining. It was definitely an OFF run day for me and poor Tyler had to deal with it ;)ReplyDelete
i'm trying to talk him into a full...he's so physically fit that he could jsut go do it and finish. he'd hurt like hell the next day but he could do it. jerk! ha
I wish so bad I had a sibling which would run races with me! No one in my family runs and I try to coax them but it never works out. Lol I'm so proud of your sister for finishing this race after not running for like 2 years. That's AWESOME!ReplyDelete
What a fantastic experience for you both! I love that you were able to list so many positive things from running along her side. Also- the baby is THE cutest with that bear hat on :) You guys looked great too :D !ReplyDelete
I have 3 sisters, and 1 of them lives close to me and has wanted to get more into running in the last few months, so I try to get out with her once a week to encourage her along. It is fun and encouraging to me also. I am so happy for your sister to have had a good race 6 months after having a baby! Good for her and that was very kind of you to run with her!ReplyDelete
What an awesome day for both you and your sister! I love that you paced her the entire race! And I agree...that baby smile at the end made it all worth it! So cute!ReplyDelete
Wow, awesome! Congratulations to your sister and to you!ReplyDelete
I know this is stating the obvious but I was so excited to see you! And I'm really happy that you and your sister got to run this race together. I personally think a common love of running can fix any awkward relationship :)ReplyDelete
Great job pacing and HUGE congrats to your sis! Love the smiles post race.ReplyDelete