My first Half Marathon

Well, I did it. I completed my first Half Marathon! EEEP.


I started training with a group at my local running store in July. I have not been sharing a lot of what has been going on in my life right now but long story short:

BF got job in California, Sara resigned from her job and stayed in Maryland and got  a part-time job with a community organization, Sara met up with BF in Chicago, BF proposed, and Sara is getting married sometime this summer.

I said yes in Chicago!

A post shared by Sara G. (@ilovealtoclef) on

In short, running has kept me sane. Being on the job market is stressful, trying to figure out when you are going to move is stressful, applying to grad school is stressful, wedding planning is stressful. Knowing that I will see my group on Tuesdays and Saturdays makes me really happy. Also, even though I was by far the slowest person in the group, everyone was always really nice and positive. Even yesterday during the half marathon, I had some of my training mates see me and cheer me on which was great.

I trained for 14 weeks and they had us running in the heat. The first time I hit 13.1 miles in a training run I shed a tear. I never thought I would be able to run that far. Ever. Before I started the training program I had only run about 6.5 miles at a time.

The day of the half marathon I got there really early to see the Marathon start. In Baltimore the half and the full start in different places.

My goals were the following

  1. Finish the half marathon
  2. finish in under 3 hours
  3. get a personal record

Finishing was my number one priority.

The first mile is always tough for me because I need to get settled and find my legs. Our coach warned us that miles 3-6 from Patterson Park to Clifton Park were tough, and they were.

The atmosphere was infectious. there were many election themed signs and even Boh-dration stations, stocked with Natty Boh Beer.

Towards the end of the race around mile 11, my friends Robin and Jon met me, and Robin even ran with me for about a mile. That pushed me through even though my calves were burning and my feet were hurting.

The hardest thing about the Baltimore Running Festival was that the finish line is back between Oriole Park and M and T Bank Stadium, so you keep running and running, and think you see the finish line, and you don’t. I kept looking at my watch and just kept running.

When I looked down at my watch, I was shocked I got all three goals! This experience was amazing and I can’t wait to sign up and train for my next one. I can’t believe I did this!


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