St. Luke’s Half Marathon: April 27, 2014 {PR}

**View other half marathon race recaps here.**

Race Recap:

I came very close to backing out of this race. After my 8 mile training run the week prior, I experienced some irritation in my left kneecap. I self-diagnosed myself with the all too familiar ‘runners knee.’ Basically, irritation where the kneecap rests on the thigh bone. Although the pain was absent during my training run, I wasn’t sure whether I wanted to risk further injury by ‘pounding pavement’ for 13.1 miles. I eventually decided (the day before the race) to give it my best shot.

Almost 48 hours later, and I still haven’t felt any pain in my knee (score!). I am walking funny and sore from the waist down, but my knee is feelin’ good! I am glad that I made the decision to run.


This was my first race as a Carelli (I got married this past March)! In the back of my mind, I kept thinking of this race as a new start to my running career.

Something inside my head told me to give this race all I’ve got. So, I did. I pushed myself. I kept a very fast pace (for me) from the beginning. Around the 6 mile mark, I started to worry that I may have come out too hard from the beginning, which would cause me to crash & burn during the second half of the run. While everyone’s pace seemed to slow down once we entered the parkway (because the trail narrowed and it was difficult to pass the runners in front), I managed to keep my pace in the 8:15-8:30 min./mile range until around mile 11, where I definitely crashed & burned. At that point, it became a mental game. I only had 2 more miles to run and was on pace for a PR. My pace slowed down a lot during those last 2 miles, but I still hit my PR and was very happy with my time.

This is not a flat race. Expect many hills, but the scenery changes a lot during the run and the scenic route makes the course very enjoyable.

What? St. Luke’s Half Marathon (13.1 mile run)

  • There is also a youth run, family fun walk, and a 5k (3.1 miles)

Where? Allentown, PA

  • The course begins at W. Allen High School and ends inside J. Birney Crum Stadium. There were thirteen live bands along the route. The course takes the runner through several Allentown parks, including the Lehigh Parkway. An uphill battle and a lap around a track makes for a very exciting stadium finish.

When? The 5k began at 8:00 AM and the half marathon began at 8:10 AM.

  • The runner’s predicted finish time determined the color of their bib. All runners left at the same time (there weren’t corrals); however, the runners lined up at the start according to their bib color.

Course Map

Elevation Map


iPhone shot at the start of the race



2014 Race Statistics

  • 750 Children (aged 3-14) participated in the free youth run
  • 577 runners finished the 5k
  • 2,820 runners finished the Half Marathon
  • 5k – 10 US states were represented by runners
  • Half Marathon – 31 US states were represented and 2 European countries (Canada and Germany) 

Proceeds support area youth running
This year was the fifth year that St. Luke’s University Health Network has sponsored the event. Proceeds from the St. Luke’s Half Marathon and 5k benefit youth fitness, health and running programs across the greater Lehigh Valley.


  1. I’ve always wanted to do a run but I so HATE running, even around the subdivision. Glad you didn’t back out.

    1. Thank you! I suggest finding a form of exercise that you DO enjoy and stick to that 🙂

  2. You are an inspiration and make me want to start running again! I give you a lot of credit for giving it a go even though you were injured. Keep it up girl!

    1. Thanks a bunch 🙂 Its been a little over 48 hours now and I’m still feeling no pain. I’m glad I made the decision I did. Must have just been a flare-up.

  3. Stay healthy and happy! I’m always so worried I’ll injure myself when I have a pain from running. Happy to hear it was minor 🙂

    1. Thank goodness it was minor. I wouldn’t know what to do with myself without my gym time 😉

  4. CONGRATULATIONS on your new runner carrier with your new name!! hehe! And Congrats on the finish and PR!!! So amazing!!! I get runner’s knee as well and I have a half marathon in June. You are my inspiration girl!! Congratulations!!! 😀 😀

    1. **career. Good thing I can spell! haha! Congratulations again!!

      1. Thank you Thank you! Good luck with your training and HAVE FUN at the race 🙂 Take care of that knee!

  5. I am training for a half marathon at the end of June. It will be my first ever. I ran 11 miles on Saturday.
    Congratulations on your personal best. Way to Go!! I’m impressed.

    1. Your first half?! Thats awesome! Great work. If you already ran 11 miles than you are in the clear. I usually only run 10 to train for a half 🙂 Good luck!!

  6. Congrats on your run, congrats on no pain in your knee, and congrats on your PR! I’ve been telling myself that I WILL get back into running and I’m planning to register for a run (5k!) and this has been just the inspiration that I needed!

    1. Registering is the first big step! You will have a blast. Races are so different than going out for a training run by yourself or with a friend. You will know what I mean after your first race 🙂

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