You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.

Wayne Gretzky

Well, this race was to be my first official attempt to break 90 minutes in the half marathon. It has been a long-time goal since I was close to it back in 2015. Growing and changing after 2 kids and getting back at it through COVID, hiring a coach, I felt I was fit and ready to attempt this goal again. My training felt good and I practiced my fueling on my long runs. I did a 2-day carb load where I ate quite a few bagels and pretzels and making sure I had more carbs at every meal and snack. I included at least 2 Liquid IV’s each day for added electrolytes.

My foot flared up again like it did during the taper of my marathon in April. I just cannot taper for my foot it seems. I am still trying to figure out that issue and think it is a plantar plate sprain, but my PT hubby isn’t so sure about that and thinks it is a stability issue. He was kind enough to tape my foot before the race which seemed to help on top of wearing my racing shoes! I decided to try Vaseline on my toes for the race because I had been getting bad blisters this week and read this can help to at least not get any more.

I had been staying at my friend Kristin’s cottage up in Harbor Springs. We started our drive at 5:15 am to make it to the race around 6am. This timed out nicely since there was no traffic and found parking in the neighborhood on the North side of the draw bridge (thinking will be good for a quick exit after the race). We walked to the start of the race and went in search of the bathrooms We were able to find real bathrooms to use that no one seemed to know about and did not have to wait in the porta potty line!

Charlevoix Half Marathon was a great race! The weather was 50s to start with a 6:30am start time, all in my favor since I love running early! I lined up near the front by the 1:30 pacer but knowing I wanted to start behind to warm up into the race. I had studied the course and knew where the hills were and aligned the course with my pacing strategy from my coach.

I took a Ucan gel 15 minutes before the start of the race and took off. Mile 1 was an incline so I used that as a warmup and wanted to stay close to 7:00 min/mi. The second Mile was a nice downhill and you could see the water (Lake Michigan) which was a nice view before we turned more inland for the rest of the race. Miles 3-5 were an uphill and I tried to hold pace. I took a salt tab and Ucan gel at Mile 3. By Mile 4, I felt like I had to use the bathroom and was trying to plan my strategy whether trees or porta potty was worth the risk. But I then passed a group of women who told me I was 3rd female so I had to hold that. By this point I knew I wasn’t breaking 90 though based on my paces so far and was just trying to hold it together.

Mile 1 – 7:01
Mile 2 – 6:54
Mile 3 – 7:01
Mile 4 – 7:03

We ran over a wooded bridge which seemed to go on for about a mile. I was still feeling pretty good after a nice downhill from Mile 5 to the halfway point. There was a sharp turn around for this out and back course. The hill back up was tough but it was great seeing people on the turn around: @heatherabsruns who paced 1:50 and met on IG, Kristin, and then a friend I hadn’t talked to in a while Beth. I was holding my place with the men around me. I had taken a salt tab and Huma+ gel at Mile 6. I did grab water at the aid station to take some sips before dumping it on my head.

Mile 5 – 7:00
Mile 6 – 6:41
Mile 7 – 6:49

It was a constant hill for a mile until Mile 8. At this point, it really began the search for a bathroom or the woods. I finally found a porta potty at Mile 10 and knew I would feel better and risked it. Still hopped out ahead of the 4th female and planned to hold my ground. I had noticed while in the bathroom that my toe was bleeding into my clean race shoes! I had attempted to tape my toe earlier this week and ripped off skin so it wasn’t fully healed, my bad!

Mile 8 – 7:17
Mile 9 – 6:58
Mile 10 – 6:52

The last 5k! It was going to be a push. I lost 50 seconds in the bathroom. At this point there were turns in the subdivision. I could feel my legs were fatigued here. I did take a salt tab at Mile 9 but held off on the gel until after the bathroom. I did open my Huma+ caf and only took a couple bites and just couldn’t take anymore. I even struggled to take my Skratch hydration. I just wanted water. I got caught up in racers finishing up the 10k here so was running around them. It wasn’t too busy at least but I wasn’t able to run the tangents as well as I hoped. There was a last hill between Mile 11-12 which wasn’t too challenging. Then it was a downhill the last mile to the finish.

Mile 11 – 6:48
Mile 12 – 7:12
Mile 13 – 6:56
Mile 13.1 – 6:26

Official time 1:32:39. I’m happy with it. I know I’m fit for more, but I’ll take the 5-minute postpartum PR! Love seeing the progress and each race is a lesson learned. I do not think the heat or sun affected me which is a plus.

Really need to figure out the stomach issues as that is really holding me back right now and don’t know why. I am working with Runner Girl Dietitian right now who did help plan my race day fueling and about of carbs I should consume in my 2-day carb load. I obviously didn’t get to practice this well yet so it will be trials and errors. As you can see the 50 second loss in the bathroom since I paused my watch while I was in the bathroom.

Hopefully I can find time to fit in another half marathon to race in my training schedule. I am planned out through Fall 2025 because I love running. I know you can’t always hit your goal on the first shot. I will be back for more!

I did finish 3rd place female, but the awards table wouldn’t let me get my trophy early. Guess they didn’t believe me, and I would rather go and get breakfast with Kristin after than wait until the awards ceremony. All for the food!

Then we were able to enjoy the rest of the day at the beach with the family. I was very happy to chill. We did eventually make our way into Lake Michigan and whew did that feel like a cold plunge for our legs.

What running goals do you have?

Do you hit your goal the first time?

Anyone have insight to stomach or GI issues?

This site uses cookies to offer you a better browsing experience. By browsing this website, you agree to our use of cookies.