There were 3 things I was totally prepared for this weekend when I headed out to run the Syracuse Half:
1. It was going to be increadibly cold.
2. It was going to hurt (I was running with a cracked rib and I hadn't run more then a mile in months)
3. I was going to be slow... really slow. There woudld be no PR anywhere in my future.
Going in with those expectations left me with two goals: Finish and have fun. What I didn't expect was to face obstacles that had never even crossed my mind. Both were weather related and both bugged the crap out of me for a bunch of miles.
The first thing had to do with my water and the second with my music, both things I've come to kind of depend on during a long run.
The second thing the cold weather attacked was my phone. I keep in my vest pocket and at mile 5 it just shut down completely. At first I thought the battery died, but what really happened was it got so cold it couldn't function anymore. So I ran the last 8 hours without any tunes. Whicch left me a ton of time to think about my frozen water.
Still, these are minor things. I managed to finish the race, It ended up being a beautiful (if brutaly cold) day, and I met some runners along the way that I had a blast running with. Especially a girl at the end who asked me to run it in with her. It was her first half marathon, and she wasn't sure she would make it. So when we saw the finish line we ran in together and we talked about what to do after the race (smile for the camera, walk it off and grab as much free food as you want). It reminded me of what a great running community we live in! I was also super proud of my co-worker who finished his first half at this race. It was a lot of training, but he did great. It was also nice to have someone to hobble around at work with on Monday.
I'm not sure I'd do this race again and road running in the city isn't really my cup of tea, but it was a wonderfully organized race, the post-race party was a blast and medal was fabulous. If you are looking for a half to do, this is a great one!