Wow, you guys. I don’t even know where to start.

I honestly cannot believe that this half-marathon is now in the past. I RAN A HALF-MARATHON! Aaah! If it weren’t for the fact I’m still walking like an old grannie, I wouldn’t believe it myself.

I have a lot to share about the race day – probably more details than anyone else really cares about but these running updates have been like a journal to me detailing my journey that started all those months ago so it seems natural to end with this recap of the race.

We drove from Idaho to Utah Friday night (race was Saturday) and rolled into Provo just in time to pick up race packets and then head to Noodles & Company for a later dinner. I went for a pasta dish without any dairy or meat since I had heard that might be best. Despite my best efforts to get in bed early, it was after 11:00 p.m. by the time my head finally hit the pillow.

I was a little in denial when I had to set my alarm in the 3’s for the next morning. Painful. Very, very painful.

Half-Marathon Recap

My sister flew into town from Wyoming for the race and we met up with my cousin Alex at the shuttle station that early, early morning and rode the bus to the starting line up beautiful Provo canyon. Of course, we couldn’t see any of the beauty because of the ridiculous hour. It’s still very, very dark at 4:07 a.m. FYI.

Half-Marathon Recap

It was chilly up there, which we knew, so we spent our time hanging out by the smoky, not-very-warm fires, taking advantage of no lines at the porta potties…

Half-Marathon Recap

…and running (ha, no pun intended) into random people. Good family friends from Montana were there running/walking the race and amid the 1000+ runners, we found them. So fun!

Half-Marathon Recap

And another sweet cousin of mine was there with one of her good friends. Instead of sitting on the comfy asphalt road resting, we ended up laughing and talking for a good part of the hour and a half wait.

Half-Marathon Recap

I had been very, very nervous leading up to the race (as you know, I talked a lot about that here). But surprisingly the morning of, I was pretty calm. Having friends/family to talk to while waiting helped. My stomach was a little rumbly and worried and I was certainly anxious but the distractions helped and it was nothing like I thought it would be.

Many of you gave me advice about what (and what not) to eat the morning of and I decided on a banana (mostly so I could take ibuprofen without tummy upset). I ate the banana around 4:30 and took a couple ibuprofen around 5:00 a.m. And went to the bathroom at least six times. I’m not even kidding. I was glad for that when the lines at the bathrooms were insanely long at mile two already.

Half-Marathon Recap

As it lightened up, the energy in the crowd of runners increased. We inched a little closer to the starting line and the last ten minutes seemed like an eternity. I just wanted to start! Look how happy we are. Wish I would have felt like this at mile 11.

Half-Marathon Recap

And then! We were off running! The three of us had made a pact that we wouldn’t care if anyone felt like they needed to run faster and leave the others; no one wanted to be “that girl” that slowed down everyone else. We knew we’d love each other at the end regardless. Our goal was to start out moderately so we wouldn’t tank a few miles down the road. That proved a little more difficult because the first few miles of the course have downhill slopes that make you feel like you want to put the wings on and fly.

I don’t have pictures of any of the running. I’m not sure I would have had the energy to run and take pictures. I was pretty tired. The first few miles, even having downhill spots, were harder than I had thought they would be. I’m not sure if it was the increase in elevation (I live at about 2,500 feet and the race started at over 6,000 feet) or the fact I hadn’t run more than a couple times the week leading up to the race or just nerves. I don’t know. But I was a little worried at mile three because my legs were aching and tingly and every step felt like I was forcing it…and I knew I still had a long way to go.

I grabbed water at most of the aid stations until mile six. My sis and I had to stop and take a potty break there and I took some powerade. Which was a mistake. It made my mouth feel sticky and nasty until the next aid station two miles down the road – so I stuck with water after that. Just a few sips at each aid station.

By about mile six or seven, I felt like I had found my stride. The three of us were still running together and my legs had either gone numb (kind of teasing) or didn’t feel as achy as before (probably the ibuprofen as well as just getting a few miles under my belt). Around mile six, I put in one earbud and turned on my music – before that, I wasn’t listening to anything. The canyon (I wish I had a picture!) is so astonishingly pretty that I knew I’d enjoy running in the scenic mountains – and chatting here and there with Alex and Em when I could spare an extra breath – and I did enjoy it very much. The air was crisp and fresh and since I could spend the rest of my life people-watching, I got a kick out of observing all the other runners around us, the ones running at our pace and of course the ones blazing by us. Lesson learned: people watching makes running more bearable.

My cousin Alex shared one of her Gu pouches with me around mile eight and I took a few little sips and nibbles out of it but I could only choke down about a quarter of it before feeling like I was going to puke so it went into the next trash box I saw.

I can’t remember what mile brought us out of the shady, cool canyon (maybe eight or so?) but once we started on city streets, even though it was still early in the morning, the sun felt brutally warm. And of course all the downhill action stopped.

Remember how I expressed concern several times that I was afraid I’d never be able to run farther than ten miles since that’s the longest training run I did? And then you all chimed in and said “don’t worry, you’ll be fine” and I still worried that you were all wrong and I was right? Well, guess what. You were right.

Shocker, I know. I hit mile ten and amazingly, felt like I could keep running. In fact, I don’t know that I even consciously thought “here we go, this is gonna be rough.” I mean, I was definitely tired. All conversation between my sis and cousin had stopped at this point and I was half-listening to my one earbud of music. Probably right around 10 1/2 miles, I looked at Alex and said, “I’m going in the zone.” I had hit a mini-wall and knew that I needed a little motivation to keep me going. For me, it was music and the new songs I had added to my playlist the night before. I popped in the other earbud, cranked up the volume and went somewhere deep inside myself in order to finish.

Right about this time, I could see the blue finish line up ahead. Really, really far up ahead. At first it gave me energy and a desire to push it a little but that faded when it seemed like that tricky banner wasn’t getting any closer. By far, mile 11 was the most brutal part of the race for me. It seemed to last forever. Where was the blasted sign to say we had reached mile 12?? I was dying and honestly, if Emily and Alex hadn’t been hanging in there with me, I’m not sure if I would have made it through that mile.

Once we got into mile 12 territory, I think adrenaline and pure motivation to was the impetus that got my feet to keep going. Oh, and the occasional misters set up along the race course didn’t hurt either. I was like a 6-year old kid running through those things – they were awesome.

In the end, Em, Alex and I stayed between 9:35 and 10:30 minute miles throughout the entire race, leaning more toward the 9:55 pace for the majority of the time. It was much faster than I had anticipated running – the downhills certainly helped that – but it didn’t feel awful and terrible. It felt as natural as running 13.1 miles could feel. I didn’t really calculate finish time while running but as we ran up to the finish line and I saw the electronic timer, I couldn’t believe that we were finishing at 2:15! I had hoped for 2:30 and had no idea we’d be 15 minutes faster. I still insist I didn’t care about time, and truly I didn’t – I just wanted to finish, but there was a huge sense of personal satisfaction and accomplishment seeing those numbers.

Half-Marathon Recap

As I approached the finish line and headed into the narrow chute to cross, it was almost an out of body experience. My legs were sprinting faster than they ever have and I think I was laughing and kind of crying and trying desperately to find Brian in the crowd because I wanted to cross that line and jump in his arms (he’s been my very biggest supporter this whole time). My sweet mom was there watching the three littles and it was the perfect ending to cross that line and have them waiting there. The song that was blasting when I crossed? Fight by Rachel Platten. It was a new-to-me song and it couldn’t have come on at a better time. As cheesy as it sounds, those words seriously made me want to fight to the finish:

This is my fight song
Take back my life song
Prove I’m alright song
My power’s turned on
Starting right now I’ll be strong
I’ll play my fight song
And I don’t really care if nobody else believes
Cause I’ve still got a lot of fight left in me
Now I’ve still got a lot of fight left in me

I really couldn’t have finished this without these two girls by my side. Being quite the loner while running all these months (except for one or two long runs with friends), there was a different kind of energy and motivation running with these two during the race. I needed them!

Half-Marathon Recap

As a sidenote: these three champs below ran the 10K and did awesome! In fact, Walker (9-year old), about halfway through, turned to Brian and asked if he could run faster and he ended up finishing almost 10 minutes ahead of the others. I was so proud of each of them!

Half-Marathon Recap

After the race, the ultimate highlight was meeting so many of you. I can’t even being to describe what it means to me that so many of you stopped to say hello and give hugs (I was so gross – thank you for not caring or at least pretending not to care!). Those couple hours made my life. You made me laugh and cry and feel like I never, ever want to quit blogging. Thank you so, so much.

Half-Marathon Recap

Here are just a handful of the awesome Mel’s Kitchen readers I met after the race!

Half-Marathon Recap

I was able to reconnect with some old friends from high school and places we’ve lived over the last decade (and was surprised by one of my dearest friends who lives in Italy and showed up unannounced, causing me to shriek in surprise and then totally start to cry). It was priceless. I’m sorry to anyone who I was not able to meet or say hello to. If you waited and weren’t able to jump in, I’m so sorry! I appreciate all of you who made the effort to come and say hello. Seriously. I was grinning like a goober all day because of it.

Half-Marathon Recap

During all the chatting, my brother-in-law managed to grab the winner of the full marathon, David Tuwei, and he was nice enough to snap a picture with us even though it was a slightly awkward experience (I think the poor guy had way better things to do with his time than meet a lady who likes to eat chocolate chip cookies). He clocked in a finished marathon time of 2:30. {Pause for dramatic silence} Which basically means he ran a full marathon in the time it took me to run a half. That’s so remarkable that I can’t even make a lame joke about him not being able to keep up with me. Amazing. Totally amazing.

Half-Marathon Recap

I was on a total high from the experience (both running and meeting all of you) until about 3:00 that afternoon when I wanted to crash. I finagled a 30-minute nap but I don’t know if I’ve ever been that tired. No, not tired. Exhausted. Like, been-hit-by-a-bus exhausted. Now, a couple days later, I’m still walking with stiff legs and if I sit too long, it’s an interesting experience standing up without looking like a goofball, but I definitely think the ibuprofen at the starting line helped my hamstring issue that has been plaguing me for several months. Other than general soreness, I haven’t had any problem areas that are alarmingly painful. I am so grateful for that.

I feel like I’m forgetting so many things but I guess that’s the gist of it right now.

Oh, food. After the race, I had a mini Jamba juice from one of the stands at the finish line and was starving by the time we headed out about 2 1/2 hours later. I think I waited a little too long to eat or drink (I know, I know, feel free to lecture) because my stomach felt pretty queasy the rest of the day. I was just grateful it hadn’t felt like that at all during the race (except for that mandarin orange Gu disaster). Of course, it didn’t stop me from eating everything in sight the rest of the day. Based on your recommendations, we had decided to hit up 180 Tacos for lunch but it was closed. Bummer! So we grabbed a tri-tip sandwich at Cubby’s instead and oh my goodness, it was fantastic (of course mine was slathered with bacon and bleu cheese which didn’t hurt). The sweet potato fries there are magnificent, too.

That night we ate at Pizzeria 712 and it was also very, very good – followed up by some ice cream at Rita’s. There was lots of snacking and goodies mixed in all day which basically means it didn’t take me long to make up the calorie deficit of running that far. I wish I had another week to eat all the things in the Provo area (particularly some yummy Indian food and the Black Sheep Cafe which didn’t happen). But I also really want to sleep in my own bed so I’ll be content until next time.

Oh, you guy. I can’t believe this particular journey is at an end. I cannot even describe my gratefulness to all of you who took the time to check in on my running updates, who submitted inspirational running stories of your own, who supported me and gave me advice and made me feel like I could do this. I’m getting misty-eyed typing this out, I’m not even kidding, because I know, 100% for sure, I wouldn’t have stuck with it had it not been for you. Thank you. Thank you for boosting my confidence and motivating me to believe I could actually do this. I know it’s a short distance to many in the running world but to me it was everything. I never, ever, ever thought I would run a half-marathon. And I did. And I was actually  smiling at the end (and then crying, so there is that).

Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

I’ll miss our weekly chats about running. I’ll miss them so, so much! For each of you who started exercising or walking or running, you keep going! Don’t stop. And know that I’ll be your biggest champion and supporter so email me in those low moments and keep sharing with me your accomplishments. I have loved every single minute.

Now. I’m going to peel myself off this chair and hobble to the kitchen for a handful of chocolate chips. Later skaters.

82 Responses to Half-Marathon Recap!

  1. Messi Albert says:

    Congratulations! Thank you so much for sharing this recap! Running a full/half marathon was my dream in my teens and early twenties, but bad knees and other life things have made the dream slip further and further away. Your posts are definitely inspiring for all the runners.

  2. Rachael says:

    Way to go!!!! I’m super proud of you! I wish I’d been able to be in Utah to meet you at the end. You did great!

  3. Kel says:

    Congratulations!! This never came through my feedly so I went searching to see how you did. So happy and thanks for sharing your journey. You have certainly inspired others!

  4. So fun to read! Congrats! :o) After I ran my first half, I felt like I wanted to do another one the next day – it was such a high! But then, umm, I didn’t run more than 4 miles for the next 2 years. ;o) I did do a second half, but lately I’ve been thinking it would be fun to train for a 10k and focus on getting faster, since those long runs are such a big time commitment. Keep us posted on what your running life is like!!

  5. Jill says:

    Congrats! I tried to get my little brother to come say hi for me but I guess he thought that would be awkward… 🙂 What’s FitOne?

    • Mel says:

      Haha! I would have loved that Jill, awkward or not. FitOne is a race here in the Boise area (benefits the Children’s hospital here)

  6. Jessica Call says:

    So fun to finally read your re-cap Mel! You are awesome! I’m so glad all went well and your first half was a great experience.

  7. Sarah says:

    I know I’m a little late to the way to go party, but, WAY TO GO! I loved reading about your race and your training leading up to the big day. I reminded me so much of why I love running and got me out and running again after I’d taken a bit of a break. Thanks for the inspiration!

  8. Handsfullmom says:

    Woo hoo! Congrats on a great race! You did it! Now for the full marathon, right? 😉

  9. LM says:

    I am so proud of your huge accomplishment!And for showing the way of how to do it.And, how did you keep your sneakers looking like new in the photos?

    What next a swimming race?

  10. lauren says:

    oh, mel! thank you so very much for your running weekend recap. I had tears streaming down my face the entire time I was reading~you are a total inspiration to me. right now I’m going to indulge in a perfect choc chip cookie; the rest I’m bringing to our father’s day celebration. I’m starting to train with a new fight in me this week! you did it, & I can, too. I see the boston marathon in your future. I know we’d all love to see you out this way~thank you for all you do…it means so much!

    • Mel says:

      Oh, thanks Lauren! Your comment is so sweet and if I know you are out there training hard this week maybe it will motivate me again, too! I don’t know about the Boston – that’s for hard core runners (I’m such a baby in the running arena) but never say never, right?

  11. Judy Hintz says:

    Mel – Congratulations on a fantastic first half marathon! I just kicked off my training program for the Fox Cities Half Marathon in late September. Just as some motivation for you; it seems SOOO much easier to train this time around. I think I was a giant ball of nerves from start to finish last time because I couldn’t wrap my head around actually running 13.1 miles. Now that I’ve done it, I am so much more relaxed and really have enjoyed getting out for runs this summer. I’m pleasantly surprised that my times have been getting faster as well! Thanks again for taking us all on this journey with you. It is an amazing life experience and worthy of praise!

    • Mel says:

      Judy! I totally understand what you mean. This first go-round had me overthinking everything. I know (or I guess, hope) that if I do it again, I’ll be much more relaxed. Good luck on your half in September!

  12. Amy Keel says:

    It was so fun meeting you on Saturday!! Again, nice job on completing your first half marathon! I have loved your running posts in addition to your recipes!

  13. Wendi Bohn says:

    Congratulations Mel! That is so awesome! I registered for a half marathon last month and started training hard. Then…I found out I’m pregnant…on birth control. So now I have to decide, do I run 20 weeks pregnant or forfeit the race? Probably not going to be running. Man, life is never what you think it will be, is it?

  14. Valerie says:

    Congratulations, Mel! What a satisfying feeling to accomplish something that you have worked so hard for, and put so much time an energy into! You did it!! Two of my cute sisters (pictured above) got to meet you at the race-lucky them! Our family loves your blog, or as we refer to it, “the blog.” Please don’t ever stop. I feel like others who have commented–I feel like I know you so well from reading your blog all the time for years, yet have never met you. You are an inspiration to all of us! Thank you!

  15. Cindy says:

    Congratulations! I’ve loved following your adventure. I’ve just recently taken up running and am signed up for a half marathon in September. I can relate to you on so many levels and your story has been encouraging to me as I begin this running journey. Thank you for letting us in on your life. And thanks for your amazing chocolate chip cookie recipe- there must be balance in all things!

    • Mel says:

      Yes, Cindy! Balance in all things. So true. Good luck on your half in September! Please keep me posted, will you? I’d love to know how it goes for you.

  16. Cindy says:

    Congratulations! I’ve loved following your adventure. I’ve just recently taken up running and am signed up for a half marathon in September. I can relate to you on so many levels and your story has been encouraging to me as I begin this running journey. Thank you for letting us in on your life.

  17. Jolie says:

    Yay, Mel!!!! Yay! Yay! Yay!!!! I loved reading this recap! You are an athlete, Girl! And so humble and sweet and an encourager! Keep up the good work. I highly recommend running a few days a week and strength training a couple, too. You’ll keep up your stamina without any trouble. Love to you from SW Ohio!!

  18. Angela says:

    I can’t believe there’s a pic of my sister and me on our favorite blog! It was so fun meeting you after the race. Never stop blogging (please)!!

  19. Cara says:

    I’m with Jenny, I feel like a proud parent! And you ROCKED your time!!! Way to go! I’m so, so glad that everything went well, and don’t ever say “just” 13 miles, that’s a looooong time to run, haha!

    Congrats mama!

  20. Mary Jo says:

    Congratulations!! I am so glad your first half was a great experience. I wish I could have run that with you. The course sounded lovely. If you’re ever in Chicago and want to run any of the halves out here let me know! You can bunk with my family. 🙂 Congrats again on a job well done!

    • Mel says:

      You are so sweet, Mary Jo. Thank you! Running a half in Chicago would be fun (again, mostly because of the crazy awesome food I could eat afterwards). Like a few of the others, I have really appreciated you chiming in all these weeks with your advice and support. It has really buoyed me up. Thank you!

  21. Cyndi B says:

    I am so proud of you Mel! What an anmazing accomplishment. Your story actually brought a tear to my eye because you are like a dear friend to me. Amazing how the internet is able to really bring people together! Also, congratulations to your boys. Sounds like they did a great job! Please never stop blogging.

  22. Jenny says:

    I have stalked this page waiting to read how it went, I feel like a proud parent or sister I guess. Congratulations!
    I love your recipes but this side has been so amazing to read and follow. I hope you know how motivating you have been. I will probably never meet you and my husband thinks I am really crazy when I talk about you as if I actually know you but I think it is wonderful that you worked so hard for this and did it. If you ever run another I hope you will post about it again. I am curious now that it is over will you stop or will you keep running maybe minus the 10 mile Saturday runs?

    • Mel says:

      Thank you, Jenny! I feel like I have so many newfound sisters thanks to these running updates and I love it! Good question about running. I’m kind of not thinking about it this week. My heart wants to continue the journey of running. I’d love to stay pretty close to half marathon running shape so that if I wanted to do another I wouldn’t be starting from scratch. But I’m not going to lie, there’s another part of me that was pretty burned out of running by the time the half rolled around – I felt like I was a slave to my running schedule and while it kept me motivated and in shape and exercising, sometimes I wanted to punch the schedule in the face and go eat cookies instead. So, as you can see, I’m conflicted. My plan is to take it easy this week and just not think about it and then figure out where to go from here. Maybe a couple morning runs a week (one of them six miles or so) with some other workouts (I’d like to do more weight/strength training). See? If I start talking about it then it gets my mind going and I’m not sure.

      • Sheila says:

        Mel — weight/strength training is one of the best activities you can do to keep your body in shape, energized, and constantly burning calories in the non-exercising times unlike running. Running is great for cardio (and fun!) but you get so much more value from just a few runs a week with weight/strength training going on a short period of time daily. It frees up your time yet leaves you with the toning, strength, and calorie burn desired. You are wise to take some time to decide what you want to do while already knowing you want to keep the toned shape running has accomplished for you.

  23. Julie says:

    Mel, it was so great to meet you after the race!!! You are an inspiration to me in many ways. It’s probably weird to meet people for the first time who stalk/love/know all about you :), but you felt like a new best friend and I could have talked to you for hours! Thank you Mel- for your amazing recipes, for making us laugh, and for showing us all that we can juggle a lot of things in our lives and find happiness in the craziness.

    For those who didn’t get a chance to meet Mel, you might not believe this, but she is even cuter, funnier, kinder, and more wonderful in person! I think we all wish we could be her neighbor!

    • Mel says:

      Julie! You are so sweet. Seriously. I agree, I could have talked to you forever. Even Brian commented that the two of us seemed like we had been friends for years. Thank you so much for making the effort to stop by and say hi. I loved it so much!

  24. Kelli says:

    Amazing recap! You did so awesome! Congratulations on your first half, and I’ll be looking out for your updates on your first full marathon 🙂 Trust me, you’ll get the urge soon!

  25. Hayley says:

    My training fell off quite a bit the last few months due to a rough first trimester of pregnancy, so I wasn’t planning to run. But, my sister-in-law injured herself and asked if I wanted to run in her place, so I decided… why not? I went in without any time goals and just tried to have fun, and it was awesome. Plus, I can now say I ran a half marathon at 21 weeks pregnant! Time was 2:10, which was pretty awesome considering the poor training. Glad you had a wonderful experience. Wish I would have seen you to say hi!

  26. Jennifer says:

    This was so inspiring to me because I am starting to feel a little burned out even though my race is in a couple weeks. You did amazing! Thank you for being my encouragement. Every week I have read your updates and they have cheered me on. So thanks and great job!

  27. Michelle says:

    This sounds so funny since I’ve never met you and probably never will, but I’m SO PROUD OF YOU! You did it! I know how that first half marathon it so amazing and difficult at the same time. Congratulations on such an awesome experience!

    One request from me– can you put your running playlist up? I’m always looking for new songs but since I don’t listen to the radio a lot (my four littles just want to listen to Frozen…) I never know what songs to find. And I prefer clean, motivational songs (as opposed to songs about hitting up clubs and getting high. You know.)

    Congratulations again!

  28. Lisa D says:

    You are inspiring! I loved following your running journey. Congrats on the amazing time and of course finishing! You did it! 🙂

  29. Jennifer says:

    Woo hoo! This was so fun to read. I’ve read all your running updates, but I don’t think I’ve commented at all. I was a beginning runner for about a year until I got too far into pregnancy to run anymore. But everything you’ve done has been so inspiring! Congratulations on finishing well!

  30. Liz says:

    Congratulations and so glad you had fun as well! Great recap – thank you.

    I’m on my own “get in shape” journey and everytime I think I can’t get out to walk-run, etc., I think about you with the blog, 5 children, husband, other family, church, etc. – compared to me and a dog and a cat and work…and it gets me out and going.

    And thanks to all who shared their stories – this has been great!

    • Mel says:

      Ah, Liz, I’ve loved reading your comments through all my training posts. Thanks for loyally following along and for always being here with your kindness and positive spirit. Good luck on your own journey!!

  31. Teresa says:

    I couldn’t wait for your recap post! It was a great day for you and everyone is so proud. You are an inspiration and a wonderful person and blogger. I am so happy for this huge accomplishment and enjoyed reading all about it the last several months. Congratulations!

  32. Erin M. says:

    Congratulations!! Nice job!!

  33. Laurel says:

    Congratulations!!! So incredible and inspiring!! I’m so glad you decided to stick around,even though you were so exhausted, for all us goofballs that wanted a hug!! That was seriously the best! You’re amazing!!

  34. Tiffany says:

    That is awesome!!! I also ran the half (may or may not have been cursing you at mile 10 since your coupon was the final motivation for me to sign up:) that was the long one for me. I am so glad I did it and it was so much fun to follow along your posts, like reading a book. Thank you for your blog and all of your great recipes!

    • Mel says:

      Haha! Well, I’m proud of you and I’m ok if you were angry at me for a little while during the actual running. 🙂 I wish I could have met you! Congratulations on finishing!

  35. Mollie says:

    It was so fun meeting you! And I feel a little bit famous have a picture of me with you on your blog, so thanks for that. I’m sad tacos didn’t work out, but thanks for taking the time to chat about my bread woes. As I read through your race recap, it sounds like we had similar experiences. Felt so tired at the start, had more energy toward the middle, and then during mile 11 I thought I might die. When I was coming down the home stretch, I finally saw the mile 12 marker (which was like 1/2 a mile late!) and felt so discouraged, but luckily some other girls right next to me were also remarking that couldn’t possibly be right, and it was true, we only had like 1/2 a mile left, not a mile+. Crazy how a race has such a mental element to it all. And it’s good to know I’m not the only one hobbling around still. Thanks for sharing your story, and inspiring my sisters and me to run this race together. I’m a bit sad it’s all come to an end.

    • Mel says:

      I know! That mile 12 marker was not funny. Not funny at all. I’m so glad I was able to meet you and your sisters. So fun!

      • Amanda says:

        Yes! It was fun to meet you and I’m glad that you inspired all of us to sign up. Thanks for all your running posts and of course, all the yummy recipes!

  36. Tanya M. says:

    Way to go Mel!!! Yay for you and your family of runners!! We’ve been up in the mountains of Montana with no cell/internet til now, so I was excited to see your race recap! I thought of you on Saturday and channelled good running vibes your way! 🙂
    Thanks for the great running dialogue this blog has been. I’ve learned a lot as I’ve been preparing for our triathlon. My hubby and I are going to do our tri in less than a month. Yikes!
    Anyway, many sincere thanks for your awesome blog and great community of runners who support each other!

    • Mel says:

      Thank you so much, Tanya! Good luck on your triathlon. Seriously! Will you let me know how it goes? Email me at contact at melskitchencafe dot com. I would love to hear about it.

      • Tanya M. says:

        Okay! I’ll let you know how it goes .. assuming I’m still alive to talk about it! 🙂 (I’m super nervous… we’ll see how it goes!?)

  37. Jana says:

    Fantastically fabulous, lady! Thank you for your story – I was so excited to come see how it all went for you. I’m just so proud! I know that’s cheesy, but cheese is good, no? 🙂 Goooooo Mel! 🙂

  38. Sheila says:

    Yeah!!! What a wonderful experience! Loved, loved, loved this story with all the emotional highs and struggles even after the finish line accomplishment. Kudos to Brian, your biggest supporter. Congratulations to the boys on their accomplishment. It was so nice to read of all the family, friends and Mel readers who were there for you. And, of course, my favorite part of this story was to read how the Mel readers’ support made you never, ever want to quit blogging. 🙂 You are so easy to love, Mel. That big heart of yours that is so incredibly honest allows us to see your inner beauty and leaves us smiling inwardly. Thank you for allowing us to be part of your running journey.

  39. Holly says:

    Hooray! You did it! I’ve loved all these running updates. You rock!

  40. Rachael says:

    Oh, I’m so happy for you!! Loved reading your description of how you felt in the finish chute because it took me back to my first race. It truly is an out-of-body experience!! And I’m so happy you were able to meet so many readers…we all love you and like To imagine that we would all be your bestie in real life. 🙂 Don’t ever ever stop blogging–and keep us updated on your running!!

  41. Heather says:

    So when is round 2? : ) I am only 1/2 kidding! (no pun intended!) Good for you, Mel!!! The half distance is just awesome — you have to do the training but it does not kill you all day long where you have to lay down to feel normal again. That is just awesome!!!!! Sounds like a great race! I have never been to Utah. That scenery looks awesome!! I love your blog b/c I love to cook for my family and this has been added bonus as I love to run also. YAY!!!

    • Mel says:

      Oh boy, round two. I”ll have to see how long it takes me to recover from round one! 🙂 I agree, though, the half was a good distance. I don’t know if I”ll ever be brave enough to go for a full.

  42. Michelle M says:

    Hi Mel,
    I couldn’t wait for your update. I came to meet you from Lehi. I’m sorry if it seemed I was stalking you! But you are, like, a celebrity. I texted my nieces and told them I had met you. They were very excited. Great job on the race….and happy blogging.

  43. Jackie says:

    Way to go!!! I am SO HAPPY for you!!!! (And so jealous!!! I really wish I would have been there). That had to have been such an incredible experience! I’ve loved reading about your journey! And it sounds like your boys did awesome too, tell them great job! So, are you still planning on FitOne, or should I even ask that right now, it might be a little too soon to think of doing that again. If so, see you there!

    • Mel says:

      Missed you there, Jackie! I’m signed up for FitOne but it’s like having a baby. Now’s the wrong time to ask me if I’m fully committed to another. 🙂

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