In October, when mom was visiting, the plan changed from her coming out to support me, to her walking the half-marathon! She figured she walked 5k every day already, so with 5 months to go, she could increase her mileage and be ready to do 21k.
However, neither of us were really able to train as well as we wanted to. I struggled with a bad knee early on, followed by a frozen shoulder. We both had to deal with the winter weather. Mom's solution was to take her walking indoors by going to the mall before it opened. I spent a lot of time at the indoor track - not a fun thing to do. My longest run at the track was 13k, or 52 laps.
We headed into the race feeling great. We had 3 goals: 1) Don't die. 2) Finish the course. 3) Have fun. I have to say, all 3 were a struggle.
I did really well for the 14 km, maintaining an average pace of 10:50 which was well within my goal time. Then I hit the hills.
That was 4 kms of a constant uphill climb of more then 100 m. I was done. I ended up walking the rest of the course. By the time I hit the downhill section at km 18, my legs were toast. My only thought at that point was to just keep going and finish.
Mom is a speedy little walker and spent the entire race about 400 meters in front of me. She had underestimated just how hard this was going to be and just before the final turn into the park with the finish line, she collapsed onto a railing at the side of the road. She just couldn't go another step. I quickly caught up to her, got her to lean on me and we continued on. We were not giving up goal #2 within sight of the finish line. We crossed together, hand in hand with a finish time of 04:08:31.
After comfort food, showers and well deserved naps, we celebrated.
Mom has declared that "no thank you, never again" will she do a half-marathon. Me? I've already signed up for my next on in the fall. Crazy, I know!