Fall Classic Half Marathon Charlottesville


My very first sponsored race! Wow, I was in shock that someone actually believed in my ability to possibly one day become an Olympic runner (we shall see about that!). I woke up really early for this race at 4 am. I could not sleep much anyways and I like to take my time getting ready in the morning and not feel rushed. My pre-race breakfast included oatmeal with a little bit of all natural almond butter and 100% whole wheat toast with all natural apple butter. I drank a little bit of coconut water to keep hydrated.

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The race started at 7am and I left about 4:45am. It was about an hour a ten minute drive to Charlottesville and I always like to get there early.

I was a little worried about Charlottesville being very hilly (it is in the mountains after all). My last Half marathon just a month before (Virginia Beach Rock n’ Roll) put me in crutches due to terrible knee pain. My goal for this race was to take it easy and just finish. I could not afford to further aggravate my knee pain. After all, I had a full marathon to run the next month where I wanted to put my entire focus on.

When I arrived I got there pretty early and lucked out at a really good parking spot on the street. It was very cold that morning in the 40s. I noticed many other runners all bundled up for their race and here I was running it in shorts. I absolutely hate wearing extra clothes unless absolutely needed.

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I picked up my race packet, took it to my car, went to the bathroom (thankfully the lines weren’t very long) and then warmed up a bit. It was very frigid out and I needed to warm up my legs so I kept jumping around trying to keep warm.

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I started out pretty close in the front of the pack as seen in the picture. I was surrounded by all the lightening fast men and I let them all take the lead. It’s not easy being so competitive and having many people pass you. I could feel the burn as each person passed me!!

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They had drones taking pictures for this race which I thought was pretty cool! I tried to take a picture of it above. The video for this race came out absolutely beautiful! I mean WOW!! The magnificent aerial shots do an excellent job of capturing the beauty that mother nature has to offer!! Just watch the video and you will see what I mean!

I can be seen a few times in this video. I’m running by at around the 0:25 mark and there are other parts where I’m just standing. I loved how a good portion of this run was on a trail. My favorite part of the race was running along the banks of the Rivanna River. There is just something about breathing in the cold fall crisp air while admiring the heavenly mist across the river! It was quite blissful, I must say. Wish I could have gotten a picture of it. Those who follow me on Instagram will know how much I truly love Nature! Sometimes I wish I could share my mental pictures with you all, but the video and my descriptions will have to do for now!

I started the race out at a nice easy pace and ended up gradually increasing my speed because I did not feel any knee pain. I felt pretty happy and confident during this race. I am not sure what it was. I was really getting into the music and just enjoying the run. Might have been a really good runner’s high, but it felt marvelous and I just wanted to dance every time the beat dropped! It was the first time I really smiled in my pictures.


I remember running and someone saying “Go 17”, I looked down and didn’t realize that hey that’s me! I usually don’t talk to people when I run, but I was feeling extra supportive for some odd reason. There were a few steep hills in this race and I would always encourage the person running next to me. It helped put a smile on my face when people would joke back with me.

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I finished the race in 1:51:28. I ended up placing as overall 20th female out of 126 other females. I was quite astonished at my ability of “taking it easy”. It is always nice surpassing your goals. People do not give themselves enough credit for what they are really capable of. I, for one, struggle with this all the time. It is a learning experience and I am hoping I won’t be too stubborn and learn the hard way (I mean I am currently writing this with a big ol’ cast on my foot and crutches {due to my Full Marathon, which I’ll talk about then}).  My next race was another half marathon about a month away. I was quite excited to be leaving for Iceland that week! I’ll have to create an adventure section and blog about it because it was quite the experience and would love to share it with you all! We’ve got about a month of Fall left so enjoy it while you can!!

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