Sunday, December 15, 2013

Seattle Marathon and a Half Marathon 2013!

My goal of 13 13.1 milers in 2013 has officially been completed!

It all ended with the Seattle Half Marathon. It was on the very first day of December, the weather promised us lots of cold wind and rain, but we ended up having a beautiful fall day, go figure, huh?

I was super excited about this race, I hadn't had a large race since the Lululemon SeaWheeze one in August, so I was courius to see what the expo was going to be like and to see how different the course was from the Seattle Rock'n'Roll Half.

The expo took place at the Westin hotel in downtown Seattle, I decided to go the day after Thanksgiving, big mistake by the way with black Friday and all. Anyway, I needed to go and it was my day off from work, so might as well. It wasn't nearly as big as the Rock'n'Roll one, but they did have a fair amount of booths there. I ended up buying a 13.1 window sticker for my car and a beautiful pendant that had the state of Washington on it with the word "run" inside and a separate little 13.1 round pendant. I figured what is the best way to celebrate my 13 races than these.

The hardest part for me for this race was how I was going to dress. All the other races have not been rainy or cold and the weather forecast promised cold winds and 100% chance of rain. I brought my rain jacket with me, but once I got downtown the weather looked decent and people weren't wearing anything heavy and I did not want to be carrying around a jacket that I wasn't going to wear.

I have to start from race day morning. If you are thinking of running this race next year, please take my advice and wake up extra early to give yourself tons of time to get downtown and don't take the Seattle Center exit, instead take the next exit down and find a nice empty lot a few blocks away. This was the mistake I made. I thought I had a bunch of time, however I did not anticipate the traffic to be so bad and everybody was taking the same exit that backed up all the way to the Space Needle. It was a nightmare. I thought that I was not going to make it to the starting line. The race started at 7:30AM for the half marathoners, I was so lucky to find a parking space within minutes of the start time. I was running there and I could hear them singing the national anthem as I was sprinting down the street. They once I made it there I couldn't find an entrance to the start line, they had blocked off the whole street, I guess this was a nice warm up, but I literally got into the crowd as I heard the gun go off. Wow, this was even closer than my Tinkerbell Half Marathon and I promised myself I would not do that again.

Like I said earlier, when I looked at the map it looked really similar to the Seattle Rock'n'Roll Half, however when I was finished with it, I realized that it was actually much different. This was my favorite course out of all the Seattle races I ran this year. Mostly flat, lots of city and water views, some paved trail and beautiful Seattle of course.

I felt great during this race, if you have read my previous blog posts, you know that I have not trained for any of my races this year. I did go swimming a lot in between this race and my last and I think it helped with my stamina. I ran thru the whole thing, with some minor stops to take my energy gels and one bathroom break. The water stations were very well stocked and there was support and cheering all throughout the course.

It finished at a high school football field which was kind of cool and the finish line support was great, with lots of snacks and drinks. I just grabbed a banana and some water and went home. I'm not huge on sticking around these things because I'm always by myself and its kind of pointless to be just standing around people watching after 13 miles.

Overall I would definitely recommend this race, I loved it so much that I'm thinking about doing it again next year. They do have a kids marathon as well the day before, I think I'll sign my son up for it and we'll brave it through together.

And so this year ends with at least one of me finishing at least one of my resolutions. Time to starting thinking of next year!

Hope to see you at my next race, this was just the beginning, maybe a marathon next?!?!


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