On October 26th, I ran the 2019 Lighthouse Loop Half Marathon in Port Orange, Florida. It was my 39th half marathon. I didn’t know it would be one of my tougher ones to date. You just never know what race day will bring.
I woke up about 3:40am on race morning to get ready. The race was located about an hour and twenty minutes from me. Once I got dressed, and grabbed my gear, I was out the door at about forty minutes later. Once I got in my car, I set my GPS and was on my way.
Arrived at the race site parking just before 6am (made a convenience store potty stop a few minutes before hand), and met my runner friend, Jackie. She thankfully was able to pick up our race packets the day before, which really saved us. To get to the race start, you had to walk over a bridge which was over a half of a mile trek. Once we got to the starting area, we lingered a bit, and I found a few Orlando Galloway runners. We took some photos and I did a port-o-let stop before we headed to the starting area.
The race made some announcements (which unfortunately, I couldn’t really hear in the back), and the National Anthem was sung. Then, we were off and running! I headed out with my runner friend, Jackie and we had quite a good pace going right out of the gate. I wanted to tone it down the first 2-3 miles, but that didn’t really happen. The first mile is always fast for me anyway, all the excitement of the race and all.
Right before mile 3, Jackie took off and did her thing. She was feeling good, and I was happy for her. I tried to keep a steady pace. We were running into a headwind those first 6ish miles, and I felt it. Took a lot out of me energy-wise. And, it was about that time that my shortness of breath decided to kick in.
I hoped walking more for a bit would help, but it didn’t. Seeing the Ponce Inlet Lighthouse ahead, I tried to enjoy the scenery. It is my favorite part of the course. Took a few pictures and hoped to get myself back into my run/walk intervals again. From mile 7 onward, my pace lingered around a 16 minute mile. Not what I had planned at all.
So, I tried to make the best of it, and get out of my head with my disappointment as the miles went on and my overall pace wasn’t what I wanted. I did get to talk to a couple of nice ladies at different points. I am a social runner, so I do love talking to fellow runners and meeting new people. Runners are a cool bunch. 🙂
Somehow, I finally made it to the bridge, which symbolized the end was near. Climbing it was quite a push, but I dug in and walked up. Once I got to the top, I ran down as much and long as possible. Downhill is always better! Then, it was about a quarter of a mile until that glorious finish line.
I crossed the finish line in 3:31:18, not the time I had hoped for at all. This was just not my race. Between the headwind the majority of the first half, the heat, and my shortness of breath issues, I didn’t do well. I’m glad to have finished, but know I can do a lot better. I’m no fast runner, but I can do better than this time.
Wanted to note, because of the shortness of breath issue has been an on and off thing for me as of late, I am seeing an Asthma & Allergy Specialist in mid-November. I already have exercise-induced asthma, and now I am thinking it has gotten worse. Maybe I need a different inhaler or additional medication. Thankful that they can do testing the same day, and my December half marathons should benefit from it.
Looking forward to OUC Half Marathon feeling better and finishing in a better time. That said though, I’m blessed that I can run, and I always remind myself of that. Not all races and runs are going to be good. There’s always next time!