Garner, Dillard run half-marathon, look ahead to ‘13

Published 12:01am Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Angie Garner had a good pace going until she reached the 10-mile marker of the Hyundai Montgomery Half-Marathon on Saturday.

At the dreaded marker, there was a hill and Garner had just 3.1 miles to go.

Garner finished the half-marathon with her good friend and runner, Stephanie Dillard, and said it was quite an accomplishment. Dillard’s husband, Perry, also ran in the race.

“It felt pretty good,” Garner said of the feat. “I felt real good up until mile 10, and at mile 10, there was a hill. So, I was like, ‘oh, really?’

“I think everybody felt that way,” she said. “Once I got past that 10-mile hill, it was down hill from there. It was a very, very good feeling to cross that finish line.”

Garner ended up finishing the half-marathon in 1 hour, and 55 minutes, and placed third in her age division.

The weather wasn’t all to cooperative either, Stephanie said.

“It was hot, so it wasn’t easy,” she said. “It was a fun. It was a good run. It was somewhat close to home, so it was nice.”

Garner and Dillard aren’t hanging up their running shoes anytime soon as both are training for the full marathon (26.2 miles) in the Walt Disney World 25th Anniversary Marathon on Jan. 13, 2013.

“We’re all excited about it,” Stephanie said. “We’re working really hard on training.”

In order to train for such a long race as a marathon, Garner and Stephanie said they took to the Internet, where the searched for half marathon and marathon training on Google.

Garner had done virtual half marathons before the race in Montgomery, which was her first official running race.

“We’ve downloaded several different training plans online and you can pretty much Google half marathon training,” she said. “There are several out there. We basically just picked some that were right for us.”

Both cross-train two times each week and run four days per week with one rest day.

During the week, they’ll run an easy four to six miles per day and on Sunday mornings before church, both will do the long runs, increasing the distance each week.

“I didn’t think I could do it,” Garner said about getting up early in the morning for those long runs. “It’s so much easier to get up and get out of the way and get it over with.”

Stephanie, who is the child nutrition program manager for Andalusia City Schools, said in addition to cross-training and running, you have to eat right.

“You have to pay attention to your nutrition and have to cross-train as well,” Stephanie said.

Before both embark on the 26.2-mile marathon at Walt Disney World, Garner, Stephanie and Perry will participate in another half marathon in Savannah, Ga., next month.

Perry said it’s his wife’s goal to run a full marathon.

“We just kind of ran this one,” he said of the Montgomery race. “This is our hobby.”

In the half marathon in Savannah, Perry said there will be a band stationed at every mile for the Rock ‘n’ Roll race.

Perry said on a trip to Buffalo, N.Y., back in the day, the couple ran a half-marathon after seeing Niagra Falls for the first time.

While Stephanie has the goal of racing a full marathon, Perry said he wants to run a race in every state.

“I’ve done (races in) four (states) so far,” he said.

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