After dinner we headed back to the hotel and searched for a parking spot. It was FULL with cars donning 13.1 and 26.2 stickers as well as run, swim, bike love stickers. It was a parking lot full of people who just love to run. Once in the room I turned on the weather channel and started sitting out our gear for the next day. The weather man was saying high winds with low temps in the morning, but gradual temp increases throughout the day. So to be safe I made sure we had wind jackets and some layers. And after a nice warm shower, I headed to bed.
|Running attire ready for the race|
|The parking lot in the morning. 10 am start time means sleeping in.|
|Hubby taking advantage of the late start time|
|Everyone at the conference center warming up before the race.|
|At the start trying not to worry about the wind|
At the beginning of the race everyone started to pile into the start. I made sure that I was towards the back, but once the race begun a wave of people passed me. They must have been waiting for the bathrooms but they were not suppose to be in my marked pace group. With the rush sweeping by, I got swept up in the pace and found myself running a little too fast the first mile.
After the first I decided to stop at a bathroom since I had skipped using one at the start. BIG MISTAKE. It literally took me 5+ minutes to get in. That one bathroom break had a huge impact on my time and I lost the group that I had begun pacing with.
At about mile 2 the course went from residential to beautiful. We were starting our leg around the bay. The sun was just really starting to rise and it was breathtaking. The course was by far the hilliest course I have ever ran. And today the wind was a killer, it really started to weigh me down. I was trying for a PR but it didn't happen. I am just happy with the fact that I finished and I tried hard. It was a witch of a course but I enjoyed it. Pictures of the first 6 miles below.
A few downsides of the race were the lack of bathrooms, the awkward spacing of water stations, lack of food after the race for runners, no real mile markers after mile 7, and not enough markings on course to make sure we were going in the direction we were suppose to.
*At one point (mile 12) I accidentally got turned around. I was following the runners in front of me and I must have followed the wrong pack. Because about two minutes after making a right turn on the course an ambulance driver chased me down to tell me I was going in the wrong direction and I would have made a second lap (when I didn't need to). So thank you random man for saving me an extra 12 miles!
Some awesome perks of the race were that it honestly felt like I was doing a long training run in a local neighborhood, the community was great support, NOBODY said you are almost there (except for the last .5 left in the race), there were a lot of police officers directing traffic because it was not a closed course, and the feeling of the race was intense because it was a BQ.
In the end my times were not ideal. But considering the hills, wind gusts, and long bathroom breaks I am also not too disappointed in the end result. Mile 11 was pretty difficult because I ended up getting some pretty bad indigestion from my GU. I did forget to stop my Garmin when I crossed the finish line, so the overall time is off. You can find my splits below:
My next half is in 20 days, hopefully I can achieve a PR during my DC race.
Be Inspired, Stay Motivated, Run Strong!