My alarm clock went off at 4 a.m. Saturday morning (even though I could have sworn it went off at least 10 times throughout the night because I kept on waking up, jumping out of bed and thinking I was late to the race) and I started getting ready. I decided to play it safe and wear a long sleeve shirt and capris, I threw on a hat and drove the 15 minutes to where the busses were. When I got out of my car it felt pretty warm and it wasn’t raining so I decided to change into shorts and ditch my long sleeve top. Turns out that was a really awful idea because I was practically naked compared to everyone there that actually dressed more appropriately for the weather up the canyon.
I had the awesome opportunity to be a VIP runner and it was incredible. The best part about the VIP runners is that a big chunk of the registration for this opportunity is donated to the YOUNG RUNNERS program (a nutrition and exercise program to help young people in our community to be active).
I loved that the VIP peeps got to stay on the bus (a super nice one) at the startling line until about 10 minutes before the race started to use the bus bathroom and stay warm.
They also gave us our breakfast while on the bus which was perfect because I completely forgot to grab anything the night before. I did make the mistake of eating pb before the race even though I know it makes my stomach hurt a little bit when I run… it just sounded so good on a bagel and I couldn’t resist.
The 1/2 marathon started right at 6:45 and the marathon started at 7:15! It pretty much started raining the second we started:) Maybe Mother Nature was just watching out for us and trying to keep us from overheating while we ran:) Last thing I will say about the weather—> It got crazy cold. I couldn’t feel my fingers or legs for most of the race and I know of a bunch of people that had to be taken off the full marathon course due to hypothermia.
Long story short… I need to wear more clothes.
The first half mile was flat followed by a 1/2 mile uphill. For the next few miles we had some rollers next to this beyond beautiful reservoir (sorry the picture was taken while driving by it on the bus).
Runner’s World voted this marathon one of the top ten marathons in the world for a reason… the scenery was breathtaking. Oh, and the waterfall at around mile 9. I kind of just wanted to stop and stare at it for 10 minutes.
The next miles were down a beautiful canyon with the Ogden River running along next to us. Once we got out of the canyon we jumped on a parkway for a few miles before ending on the streets of Ogden. The parkway miles were my favorite part for some reason… I liked the little ups, downs and turns that we took. PS point to point courses like this one are my absolute favorites. Second place goes to loop courses and coming in 3rd place—> out and back courses.
I took off fast at the starting line. I wanted to see if I could get a few minutes under 1:30 for the half but after about three miles I came to the conclusion that my legs weren’t ready for that. I realized yesterday (for the 400th time) that it really does take me a long time to truly recover after a marathon. Just because so-and-so is out racing again right after a marathon doesn’t mean that my body recovers as quickly as theirs does. I just couldn’t get my legs to fire so I decided to just let my body do whatever it wanted to and to enjoy the race without thinking about pace.
Splits: 6:33, 7:04, 6:55, 7:16, 6:42, 7:15, 7:15, 7:07, 6:47, 6:52, 6:58, 7:04, 7:03, 1:56.
The finish was in downtown Ogden and there were a heck of a lot of spectators out there cheering us in even though it was so cold.
About 10 steps after finishing I ran into my internet friend Kate (we started emailing years ago and finally got to meet yesterday). This girl is phenomenal… she has triplet boys AND twin girls. She was so sweet and rocked the 1/2 yesterday with a 1:29!!!!! She’ll be running St. George this fall too so we are hoping to get in some training runs together!
After talking for a bit I went over to the VIP tent. They gave me my bag of clothes and I beelined it to the dressing rooms to change. Dry clothes felt like heaven.
And then I dug into the treats that they had for us.
SUCH a good idea to have gum out for us ha… fresh breath after a race feels really nice:)
We also got 15 minute massages which really helped to loosen things up. I think we all need more massages in our life… we run hard and we deserve it:)
If you are looking for a spring runcation then I think you should come to Ogden. Hopefully next year the weather will be a little bit better:)
A few more random things:
-Parking was really easy. I parked a few blocks away from the busses/finish line which made coming and leaving very convenient.
-Normally I start taking in fuel at about 30 minutes into a half marathon but I didn’t take any yesterday. I kept trying to unzip my spibelt but my fingers weren’t working because they were so cold. Hopefully that never happens again because I like the burst of energy that I get from my salted caramel gu.
-Running somewhere new is one of my top 10 favorite things to do. There really isn’t a better way to see a new-to-you area than in your running shoes.
-Brooke got home last night so I’m pretty much on cloud 9.
Where was the last new-to-you area that you explored in your running shoes?
What half-marathon courses do you recommend for us to try out?
Peanut butter before a race—> yay or nay?
What was the highlight of your weekend?