5/06/2009

Half-Marathon Race Report... Time 2:25:07

Running a half marathon... check (yep, that's me, checking that off my list)

The weekend started out great. My Little Sis (we'll call her LS) picked me up at the airport and we went to her house to call it a night and rest up. We awoke to rain and decided to scrap our plans of going into DC to, instead, hit the Pentagon City mall. After some shopping, we headed to Alexandria and the hotel where the race "expo" was to be and where we were staying the night. This is where the fun began.

It is no accident that I put the word "expo" in quotes. Although I am fairly new to running, I have seen my fair share of expos and, this, my friends, was no expo. This was essentially a grouping of three tables in a hotel restaurant with some running pamphlets on it. But, I knew it was a small race so I trekked on. Next, I picked up my bib, timing chip and t-shirt. Unfortunately, none of the volunteers could answer any of my questions about the shuttle to the race, the pasta dinner, or really anything else about the race at all.

I also noticed that only about 20 people had signed up for the pasta dinner, which was pretty disappointing since I was really looking forward to meeting other runners. When we got to the dinner, there were no introductions, and the race director was screaming loudly at the hotel staff to the point that we were embarrassed to be part of the group. The "inspirational speaker" ended up speaking on the topic of co-ops which I am still unsure of how that has anything to do with running. Let's just say, you know a dinner is bad, when we both left before they broke out the ice cream cake!

The morning of the race I woke early enough to take a shower and get to the start by 6am. They had a rolling start which meant you could start at any time before 7am. To me, this sort of defeats the purpose of a race since I get the most out of actually racing other people. When you don't have that initial shot of adrenalin at the gun going off, you lose a lot of momentum. I decided to wait until the "official" start of 7am in hopes it would be a bigger crowd at that time.

So, 7 am comes and goes and there starts a rumbling through the crowd. As I soon find out, the National Park Service has revoked the race director's permit because he got a permit for 300 people and signed up 1000. His excuse.... "they never stopped us in year's past!" What an idiot!

(Me hitting the stop button on my Garmin as I stepped over the finish line!)

At this point most of us, just said, Screw it and started running the race. Thank God for my Garmin. I kept my time myself and finished right in my projected time of 2:25:07! I was really happy with my time and I know if it hadn't been for the hills, I could have shaved off at least 2-3 minutes.

In hindsight, I think this was a race really just meant for locals, but LS and I did have a great weekend despite the idiot race director and the rain.

I'll give a more thorough report on the actual running tomorrow. Thanks for everyone's support!

6 comments:

jillconyers said...

Congrats on your first 1/2! I'm training now for my first full :)

Katy said...

Yay for you! The most I have ever done is the Crescent City Classic.

P.S. Thanks for leaving me my first comment. I hope you get the chance to check out Storyland soon. We will be going back to City Park for Mother's day to do the nature trail, picnic, possibly go to Storyland/the amusement park and then to the Mother's Day Sunsent Sundays concert in the botanical gardens.

Karen said...

OMG what a mess! Kudos to you for ignoring all the nonsense and running your race.

Later Gator said...

I'm so impressed!

Rach said...

congratuklations on your time, I'm thinking about doing a half marathon in March and looking for a similar tim :-)

extracebu said...

I find you are having a wonderful life