Most of you know that I have been training for my first half marathon. That race took place this weekend and believe it or not, I did finish all 13.1+ miles. The run was held in a pastoral area of Northern Virginia where the weather was expected to be cool and sunny, plus it started and finished at a winery. What could be more perfect? The event was hosted by Divas Half Marathon and based on my experience with them in Myrtle Beach I was expecting a fun and well-organized race.
To be fair, the course was scenic. We saw ostriches, a puppy riding a pony, and fields of vibrantly colored blossoms. We also received a lot of support from the homeowners who were trapped in their driveways by the waves of racers, yet gracious enough to sit on their porches and cheer us on! Kudos especially to the beer party on mile 11.
If you are on Facebook and want to read all the gory details, then look them up there. To express my disappointment, I decided to re-work the old axiom about the top 5 lies and base it on this race:
Lie #5: There will be food provided at the end of the race. Really?? GREEN bananas and hard bagels? After running (and climbing) for 13.1++ miles?? Where were the food ladies from Myrtle Beach with all the tasty morsels?
Lie #4: The half marathon will be 13.1 miles. Yeah, right – everyone who measured the race with GPS on their phones came up with 13.5+ for the race and that did NOT include the 2 or 3 miles walking around trying to find the bag check-in and my car. Thanks guys for not having signs with directions to important places at the end of the race and for making me walk all on my hill wobbled legs over that 425 acre vineyard to find my stuff and my car.
Lie #3: The after race party will start at 2:00pm at a location 15 miles south of the race. Great plan, except most people were not able to get more than 3 miles from the race in any direction until after 3:00pm due to the incredibly snarled up traffic.
Lie #2: The half marathon will begin at 7:30am – or 7:45 or 8:00 or 8:15 or 8:30 – no make that 8:55am!! Again extremely poor planning caused traffic pandemonium and most racers found themselves spending over 1.5 hours trying to travel 15 miles to the race. Five miles of 2 lane country road and 4500 racers, one way in and one way out – you do the math!
And the #1 lie told about this race – “The route starts and finishes downhill and is softly rolling in between with only 2 areas of uphill running where you will gain less than 90 feet over 2 miles in each of these two sections.” – OMG – I should have worn my hiking boots. At least 1/3 of the course was on gravel roads and at least 2/3 was up and down MANY hills. My legs ached after this race and we saw a couple of bloodied racers who lost traction on the gravel. Thank God it did not rain and give us the added thrill of running in mud!
Having said all that I think that you will understand why the only video that I recorded was before the race. My mama would not have wanted the words uttered after I finished this race to be recorded or repeated 🙂
Thanks to I.C. Weathers for being my fabulous CameraDiva on this shoot and for being my faithful running partner. Congratulations on finishing your first half marathon, I.C.!