Run a Half-Marathon? Check.
I completed my first half-marathon yesterday. Needless to say, I cannot walk without groaning or using the handrail on my stairway today, but the pain is certainly worth it. As one spectator's sign read along the New Bedford Half-Marathon course, "The pain will fade but your pride will swell."
It was an unusually warm and sunny March day and with an 11 a.m. start time, the conditions certainly were not ideal. But more than 3300 runners turned out on race day to enjoy the 35th year of this event.
I generally run about 15-20 miles per week but started training for the half about 5 weeks before race day. If I had to do it again, I would have ramped up my mileage over the course of a few more weeks. Likely due to my hasty training, I began having shin pain about a week ago. Naturally, I was concerned about how the pain would affect me during the race.
I visited Tom Crabbe, MS, DC, CCSP, of Crabbe Chiropractic, in a tent before the race and he tended to my shins. First he applied a topical analgesic and massaged the muscles on my shins. Then he applied therapeutic tape to relieve the muscular pain and inflammation.
Thanks to Dr. Crabbe's work, my shins were not a factor at all during the race. I finished the race in 2:03:08 and was generally pleased with my pace (although I crossed the halfway mark at 00:56:42 and got entirely too excited about the prospect of breaking 2 hours!). The crowds cheering on the sidelines were truly amazing and often brought a huge smile to my face just when I needed a pick me up.
There were many high points of the race but there is one memory that I will hold with me for all of my days. During mile two, I heard cheering ahead of us and as I got closer, I realized we were passing Team Hoyt. I nearly broke down in tears when I saw this father-son duo that has participated in more than 1,000 races together. After their first race in 1977, Rick-who was diagnosed as a spastic quadriplegic with cerebral palsy-told his father, "Dad, when I'm running, it feels like I'm not handicapped."