Tuesday, January 20, 2009

2009 Houston 1/2 Marathon

On Sunday I ran the Houston 1/2 Marathon. I've been struggling with a painful issue in my feet (plantar fasciitis) since the Sunmart 50K that makes it painful just to stand. Hoping to heal up for the marathon, I'd run only 3 times in the previous 4 weeks. Taking some time off did seem to improve the plantar issue, but it didn't help at all with my performance on Sunday. Since I had signed up for the full marathon, I started at the full marathon start, but I wisely ran the 1/2 marathon course. My race felt slow, painful, and frustrating, but just being out and part of the event was awesome!

Corralled at the start with 14,000 marathoners, it's hard to imagine a greater concentration of determination in a single spot. It was a beautiful sunny day (a little warmer than ideal for the full marathoners), and I walked back along the course cheering on the marathon finishers for four hours or so, until the marathon cutoff. I remember plenty of races where the encouragement of someone along the sidelines made a huge difference for me, and I was determined to buoy as many people as I could. Afterwards, I met up with some friends for lunch, and we sat outside, enjoying the sun, eating and trading racing stories. All in all, a great day!