By Thursday night I was sure that the Brooklyn Half would not go so well for me. I ran 3 miles on Wednesday and about 2 miles on Thursday, both ending with knee pain. I did not have my knee taped with KT Tape for either of these runs. My hope at this point was to finish the Brooklyn Half in under 2 1/2 hours, walking when necessary.
Friday I woke up super sore from the 13 + miles I covered in the city on Thursday. Maybe I should have cabbed it instead of walking everywhere, but I figured I was in the city for fitness events so I walked. I was at the Mercedes Club for the Fitness Meet and Tweet and then at Chelsea Piers working out with Dolvett from The Biggest Loser. Recaps to come later this week.
I had planned to meet Ra from KT Tape to have my knee taped for Saturday, but unfortunately I was too busy with work and a birthday party after to meet him. I had watched him tape me twice and felt confident I could tape myself adequately enough for at least the race.
My success was due to these tips for taping:
- Clean area well, dry and DO NOT use any lotion.
- Spray area well with KT Tape Ultra Stick Adhesive.
- Use the synthetic KT Tape.
- Do not touch the adhesive on tape during application.
- After application spray KT Tape Ultra Stick Adhesive over taped area.
- No activity for an hour after application.
Here is my completely successful application:
I laid out my outfit, gathered everything I would need for the race and hit the sack by 9 pm so I would be ready for my 4:30 am wake up call. My outfit featured a skirt from Rock City Skirts! I did not see one other person wearing a rocking skirt like this one!!! It was the perfect accompaniment to my outfit and comfortable too!!
Saturday morning I was up before my alarm at 4:15, I tend to have an internal alarm clock, but always set my alarm as a back up. I ate two eggs, got dressed and headed out the door by 4:50 am. I got to my friend Crystal’s hour by 5:10 am.
From there we headed to Dunkin Donuts for some much needed coffee and then on to our other friend’s house so he could drop us at Prospect Park. Getting to this race was the most stressful part because there really was no easy way from Long Island, plus since it started in Prospect Park and ended at Coney Island if we drove ourselves we would have to figure out how to get back to our car. Lucky for us our friend was willing to get up at 5:30 am to drop us at the start and then pick us up at the finish.
It was an uneventful ride to Prospect Park, unlike our trip there a 2 years ago for the Rock ‘n’ Roll 10K. We arrived by 6:30 am, leaving us plenty of time to walk around and get into our corrals by 7:05 am.
We had a lot of friends running the race, but couldn’t find any prior due to the massive amount of people! We talked to a nice couple from Maryland, before heading into our separate corrals.
The corrals were packed!! I talked to a nice woman from Brooklyn while waiting for the race to start! The first corrals set off at 7:00 am and we headed out at about 7:33 am! For such a huge race it was really well organized and the start went off without a hitch.
My plan for the race was to walk through every water station. My biggest anxiety was over the hills in Prospect Park because my knee hurt the most running uphill.
- Mile 1 was mostly downhill and flat.
- Miles 2-3.5 were mostly flat too.
- Mile 3.5 started the uphill into Prospect Park, slight uphill, not as bad as I expected.
- Miles 3.5-4.5 started with a slight uphill, followed by slight downhill.
- Miles 4.5-6 was mostly uphill, it was hard and felt like it was never going to end, but still not as bad as I expected plus no pain.
- All I kept repeating to myself was, “What goes up must come down.”
- By Mile 7 I was riding the downhill and excited to leave the park! Mile 7 is actually my favorite mile because I could start counting down!!!! 6-5-4-3-2-1 then finish!!!
- Miles 7.5-12.5 was a mostly flat, straight run to Coney Island. This section was slightly boring and I was thankful the sun was not beating down on me. I welcomed the rain at mile 8, but it only drizzled for a short time. I had stopped an walked through every water stop until mile 9, when I knew if I stopped I would not be able to start again. At mile 10 I had to go to the bathroom, but one look into the porto potty sent my running and I didn’t stop until the finish. By mile 11 I was reciting my mantra, “What doesn’t kill me makes me stronger.” My legs were basically numb the last 2 miles, it was all mental at that point.
- Mile 12.5-13.1 was amazing!!! Coming into Coney Island and then heading onto the Boardwalk for the finish was just amazing!! I felt absolutely awesome.
Success!!! I trained, I ran, I finished!!! My goal was to finish, my secret goal was to finish in under 2:15! I achieved both and did better than I thought possible!!! After the race while waiting for my friend Crystal to finish I ran into Sarah @100calspermile and Gigi from Running On Candy. Gigi and I have run in many smaller, local races and never met up, but in a crowd of 40,000 plus we finally meet!!!!
In addition to myself I have three people I give credit to for helping me finish race:
- Fred Benlein, the We Are Athletes Coach, who gave me the exercises necessary to strengthen my knee.
- Amanda from FitOrbit who provided me with an awesome cross-training program that perfectly complemented my running.
- Ra from KT Tape who showed me how to tape my knee!!!!!!!
I KNOW KT Tape go me through this race, because my runs without it were horrible. I had no pain the entire race! During the last quarter mile I felt my ITB band, but it was not pain, just discomfort. My knee held and never swelled like it did on my past two runs. KT Tape is awesome and my application was still perfectly intact at the end of the race.
Have an injury?? I highly recommend trying KT Tape!
This was a great race overall and while high from the run I signed up for my next half marathon:
The Virginia Beach Rock ‘n’ Roll September 1st!!!!
Running causes temporary insanity!!!
Did anyone else run the Brooklyn Half? How was your experience?
Disclosure: I received a Rock City Skirt for review. All opinions are 100% my own.