I came home from the Runner’s World 5K and Half Marathon with two awesome medals. And a really bad cold. I just didn’t have the energy to recap these races last week, so please ignore the huge delay. These races were incredible. You’d never know that they were inaugural races – it seemed like Runner’s World has been putting on races for years
Saturday morning, we were up bright and early for the 5K/10K races. I was only signed up for the 5K but most of the group was doing the Hat Trick (5K/10K on Saturday and half marathon on Sunday). I was really nervous. I was so unprepared for these races. If the 5K went badly I was going to dread the half marathon. My brain just wasn’t sure what to think and how to slow down so I spent a lot of the night up worrying. But come race morning, everything turned out to be fine.
I met up with Katie from KatieRunsThis and we stuck together and chatted during the 5K. Bethlehem is a very hilly area, but the 5K course only had one bad hill and it was right in the beginning. We took the first mile slow and then continued to up our pace as the race went on.
We were picking people off left and right at the end and finished in 34:04 (I didn’t stop my watch right away so the splits above have 10 extra seconds). We were both thrilled with how well it went and how easy it felt. We decided to buddy up for the half marathon the next day.
I hung out with Tina from Best Body Fitness during the 10K and we had a lot of fun cheering for our friends. I ended up having so much fun during the 5K that I came within 30 seconds of signing up for the 10K and doing the hat trick but in the end I’m glad I didn’t. I had fun with Tina and my legs got a tiny bit of a break before the next day’s half!
The Half Marathon
I was straight up terrified of the half marathon. I knew I had no business running a half marathon on the very minimal training I put in. I was so nervous race morning but I met up with Katie again and we ran with Karen from Health in Real Life.
It turns out that running with friends makes things a lot better, even when you’re all pretty unprepared. The half marathon was basically all hills.
I ended up cutting out the elevation and taping it to my water bottle with run/walk intervals written on and it helped a lot. We always knew what was coming and where we should be saving energy or pushing our pace. We also knew we just had to make it to mile 8 and then the worst of the hills were behind us (minus that awful one at mile 10). And really, we did great.
We chatted out way through the first 8-9 miles. Even though that’s when the course got easier, it’s when our bodies hit the point where we couldn’t fake training. I was exhausted and my hips really started to hurt. Somewhere around mile 10, Katie split off and Karen and I kept trucking along. And somehow, around mile 11 we started to pick the pace up because we wanted to be done so badly (mile 12 and 13 were our fastest since mile 1!).
Just as we were coming up on Mile 13 and I thought I’d given too much at the end and just couldn’t finish strong. I told Karen to go ahead of me and as I was doing that I looked over and there were my parents! They were standing right at the mile 13 marker with a big sign that said Go Carly! And I freaked out and started screaming and almost cried. It was exactly the motivation I needed to RUN through the finish. I caught Karen who was just a few feet ahead of me and we found Katie who was jut a bit ahead of us and we all crossed the finish together. It was incredible. Official Time: 2:40:57.
I know this was the longest recap ever but I could have spent days writing about how wonderful the Runner’s World races were and how much it meant to be able to participate in them. I can’t recommend the weekend enough and I really hope I’m able to participate again next year.
**I participated in the Runner’s World Half Festival as a FitFluential Ambassador. My entries were comped and all opinions expressed in this post are my own.