Justine's Most Excellent Run — May 19, 2011
Our staff knows how hard it is to begin and maintain an active lifestyle. Here is one story of a staff member who challenged herself to run in her first half-marathon. Justine Carlson, Health & Wellness Director, Lake Anna YMCA completed her first half-marathon in Cleveland on Sunday, May 15, 2011.
“The first two miles were the hardest. My heart rate was so high because of the excitement. Once I hit the fourth mile I felt great — It seemed like I got over a hurdle. That’s when I was able to pick up speed and zone out for most of the race. I didn’t really snap out of it until the last mile,” said Carlson.
Inspired to continue running and ignore her exhaustion, Carlson was pleased when she reached the 6.5 mile marker and saw her family cheering her on.
“The last mile was the absolute hardest. I kept thinking, isn't this the end? Most of spectators were just standing there watching and I thought it was kind of weird because I was expecting them to be cheering and encouraging us — I bet they were cheered out by the first several thousand people in front of me,” Carlson joked.
Carlson, whose personal goal was to finish the half-marathon before two hours and thirty seconds, finished at two hours and twenty-five seconds — accomplishing her goal.
“I was absolutely thrilled for the first hour, then I just crashed. I felt sick, almost like I had the flu. As it turns out, I made a rookie mistake and didn’t bring a change of clothes with me so I felt like I was in a cold sweat,” said Carlson. “It didn't stop me. I caught a running bug and I’m excited to keep running. I will definitely be running more marathons.”