A Summer of Firsts


First time a butterfly tried to hitch a ride!

There were many firsts this summer: some good, some not so good. I am joining the Friday Five 2.0 from Fairytales & Fitness and Rachel @ Running on Happy and sharing all my summer firsts.


First long distance races in Summer
I have always avoided racing long in Summer. So not a fan of heat. I have tackled some pretty hot halfs, and also my half in NOLA was definitely no picnic (read about it here), so when a half in July came up that piqued my interest (read about it here), I pushed the register button, of course.

First race with a pitstop, first with no medal

First pitstop in a race
Unfortunately due to circumstances beyond my control, that half in July also had my first pitstop during a race (of any length) ever. I survived and even PR’d despite the stop.

First blister from running
Did I get a blister from the July half? Or the 15 mile run? Even the 17 mile run? No, it had to happen on the 12 miler, the last double digit long run before my race. It’s on the inside of a big toe. I tried popping it a few times, but it just kept refilling.

I turned to Rachel @ Runningonhappy for advice and she told me to “rip off the outer portion” or words to that effect. I didn’t rip it off, but I did carefully remove it, and that does seem to have done the trick. There’s a big old scab there now, so it’s still healing, but it hasn’t bothered me (other than the fact I’ve been avoiding my favorite sandals so it doesn’t get rubbed).

So I am lubing my toes now, too, and praying.

On my way to 15 miles

First runs longer than 13.1
I ran 15 miles the week after my half marathon. I had company for about the first third. It wasn’t easy, and I must say I was totally wiped out for the rest of the day.

I tackled 17 miles the next week by myself. I tried to find company but was unsuccessful. It was also tough, and while I was tired immediately after, I had more energy after some rest.

I was surprised that I felt fine the day after both runs.

First race longer than 13.1
I am on my way as you read this to tackle the 1812 Challenge. The unknown is always scary for me, which I wrote about in Tuesday’s post (read about it here). I know it’s just five more miles, and I’m quite sure I can do it, but there is a time limit for the race. For most of you it would be no problem. Based on my training runs, it shouldn’t be a problem for me but it could be tight.

Hopefully on Sunday I’ll post a photo of me smiling with my new medal. As it turns out, the company that put on Freakin’ Fast Half sent out an email this week that they are shutting down and deeply in debt; I will never get a medal for that half. I consider myself lucky — they could have pulled the plug before the race.

In fact, the race was also billed as a NYC Qualifier. And they sent out an email before the race saying the new course was, indeed, USATF approved. Now they are saying that you can try to submit it, but good luck with that and you might want to run another qualifier just in case.

Although I’m confused because this was only a half — don’t you have to run a marathon to qualify for NYC? Or do you have to time qualify for the NYC Half?

First time placing in my Age Group

Bonus first: first time placing in my age group
I am quick to point out that there were only 4 women in my AG in this race, and the person who beat me was 10 minutes faster — and 5 years younger. It puts me solidly in the middle of the pack (2 out of 4). It was still exciting to me, though!

Have you ever run a half marathon and not received your medal — ever?

Any firsts this summer?

Are psychedelic yellow mushrooms growing your backyard? No? Must just be ours. 🙂

30 thoughts on “A Summer of Firsts

  1. Good luck with your 18.12-mile challenge race. I am so excited to read your race report. I think you are going to have a great time. I may try that race next year. The distance is very appealing. There are not too many races with a distance between a half and a full. Let me know what you think!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I ran a half marathon in July, and man was it brutal! I was shooting to PR, but I ended up just focusing on finishing! That sometimes happens and it’s okay!

    Long runs over 13 miles always take a lot out of me. The first time I did a 20 miler for marathon training, I was so tired I was pretty much walking into walls when I got home!

    Keep up the training!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Lots of great firsts for you this Summer! Weirdly, I’m getting a blister on the inside of my big toe too. How weird. I can’t even tell what it’s from because I don’t think it’s from running.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. You had a lot of great “firsts”……..Well, maybe the blister wasn’t that great! I ran the Peachtree Road Race 10k on July 4th in Atlanta and it was pretty bad with the heat and humidity. I am NOT a fan of running in the heat! BTW-the Peachtree wasn’t my FIRST 10K, but it was my first since becoming a cancer survivor!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Congrats on peachtree & being cancer free! I lived in TX a long time—I don’t think I’d ever tackle a race in the south in summer!

      When I did NOLA it was March & still plenty hot & humid!


  5. I only ran one summer (July) half and I almost died (passed out.)

    Blisters? I get them for each half marathon. I don’t have to pop them, they naturally pop and heal by the end of the race.

    You don’t have to run a marathon to qualify for NYC Marathon. You have to have a half marathon qualifying time (which I supposedly just did with Brooklyn.)

    Summer firsts? A race cancelled on the day of. Otherwise status quo.

    Good luck this Sunday. Hopefully it does not storm and is not too humid.

    You will eventually get that AG award- You need a bigger races and gives awards 3 deep.


  6. Lots of new running things for you! I am surprised you never had to pit stop during a race until this summer. My marathon PR also includes a pit stop. The port o john was full so I just went behind it. I had a goal to meet! I ran the Baltimore Relay this past fall and the finish area was so confusing and I could not find the medals. I got very frustrated and just left without getting my medal.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I hate confusing finish areas! At the very least it should be obvious where to get your medal. 😦

      18 miles yesterday & no pit stop. . . I think in a marathon I’d be running so long I’d need one!


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