A Bumpy Start But A Killer Finish, William's First Half Marathon Recap

Woo! First half marathon in the books! Going into my first half marathon I was both excited and scared. (Read all about it by CLICKING HERE)

It was an adventure, but in the end I had a lot of fun, and I was really happy with how I did.

At first, it didn't seem like the race was going to go too well at all. The night before, Kelly and I broke most of the rules of running a distance race. After responsibly carbo-loading on a pasta dinner, we thought it would be a good idea to make and then eat a batch of cookie dough, full of dairy and sugary deliciousness. We also almost forgot to get food for the morning, leading to a 9pm drive to the grocery store for bananas and English muffins.

Not that the food did any good for me of course. I slept terribly, and felt queasy waking up (at 3:45 in the morning!!!! Ew). I wasn't hungry at all, but with Kelly's relentless encouragement, I forced myself to eat a banana because I was afraid of running out of gas after a few miles. Bad idea: as soon as my mom and aunt dropped us off near the start line, I threw up. I guess it was some combo of being more nervous than I thought I was and that cookie dough. None of this seemed to bode too well for the race, and Kelly and I decided that I should probably drop down a wave to be safe.

Oddly, after all that, once I got into the corral I felt really good. Maybe the adrenaline of race time started kicking in. The SF Marathon starts along the bay near the Bay Bridge and downtown, and it was fun to see the area with just the first little bit of light starting to creep up on the horizon. I started off fairly slow just to see how I was doing, but pretty soon I found that all that was slowing me down were the people that I was weaving around.

The course itself was beautiful, going along the bay and across the Golden Gate Bridge, and the weather was perfect, 60˚ and foggy. Both of those helped to distract from the surprisingly OK hills and general fatigue. Not eating didn't hurt as much as I thought it would (not that I'd recommend it), and a well-placed long downhill for most of mile 10 helped a lot. My family cheered me on at around mile 11, and before I knew it I was on the final stretch. I didn't find a ton of kick left, and the race photos show me looking pretty gassed, but by the end all I felt was really happy that I did it (I also felt pretty cool-looking wearing one of those space-age foil wrapper things).

After the sleep deprivation and vomit I still managed to run a 1:35:24, which was pretty close to my 1:30 goal, which I knew going in was probably too ambitious no matter what. I was of course happy to sit on my couch for the rest of the day and pet my cats, but now I'm really looking forward to running another one (maybe even a marathon??? But we'll see.)

Until next time, #RunSelfieRepeat

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Kelly Roberts

It all started when a silly joke made headlines back in 2014 when I took selfies with hot guys “hottie hunting” my way through the New York City Half Marathon. But ironically enough, I haven't always been a runner. As the self-proclaimed former President of the "I f*cking hate running club", I spent most of my life finding ways to avoid physical activity. Growing up, I missed over 70 days of PE my senior year. Working out was something I thought I had to suffer through in order to lose weight. 

Then, in 2009, my younger brother passed away unexpectedly and struggling to manage my grief, I gained more than 75 pounds. With the weight gain came a new fight to regain my sense of self and learn to love the body I saw when I looked in the mirror. Then one Thanksgiving morning, drowning in grief and self doubt, I decided to go for a run. I didn't make it half way down my street before I had to stop to walk but for some reason, struggling forward made more sense than getting back into bed. It turns out that running is a lot like grief, neither ever really get easier, you just get stronger. 

Over time, I realized that while some people are in fact born runners, others are made. I created this blog Run, Selfie, Repeat and my new podcast by the same name with the hopes to inspire others to say yes to themselves while making them laugh hysterically because laughing, in my opinion, is the solution to everything. 

Named by Women's Running as one of twenty women who are changing the sport of running and by Competitor Magazine as one of 12 Influential and inspiring runners under 30, my mission is to inspire others to get embrace a healthy lifestyle and pursue the strongest version of themselves possible.