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Category: Race Recap

Tuesday Topics: 2019 Delaware Half Marathon Race Recap

Disclaimer:  I received a free entry to the Delaware Half Marathon as part of being a BibRave Pro.  Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review, find and write race reviews!  

On Sunday I ran the Delaware Half Marathon.  It was also state #40 in my goal to run a half marathon in each state.  I am hoping to be done with this goal next year.  

I left Saturday morning and took a flight to Philadelphia.  When I arrived I waited about 20 minutes for a shuttle bus to arrive and take me to my hotel in Wilmington.

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Luckily my room was ready.  The front desk clerk gave me a bag that had two bottles of water and a cookie.

Then I unpacked and went to the expo.  I love it when the expo is in the hotel I am staying.  I got my bib and shirt but did not buy anything. I signed up to get FREE race photos.  I began talking to the volunteer that was there about my 50 states goal.  I mentioned that I planned to run in Hawaii next year.  He asked me if that would be my last state.  I said “no” and the idea was born to make it my last one.  Currently, it will be my 48th state.

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Then I got something to eat.  I ordered a chicken wrap and a beer flight.  Yummy!  I also ate my cookie at the hotel.

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Later I met Kim for dinner.  We ended up going to the small restaurant in the hotel.  We talked and laughed.  We had a good time.  Once back in my room I got my stuff ready and went to sleep.

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Race morning it was in the mid 50s.  No rain and no sun which makes it perfect for running.  I made coffee, got ready, and ate a Clif Bar.  I met Kim and her mom in the lobby and we walked to the start line (about 15 minutes away).  The race started and ended at the Tubman-Garrett Riverfront Park.

My two goals for this race were to enjoy it and to finish it.  I remember at one point I was hoping to make this race my PR race.  My training hasn’t been going that great so that idea went out the window.

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This race is not flat.  Well, for about 4 miles it was flat.  Then it was all downhill and uphill.  I thought I was going “fast” in the downhills but my watch told me something different.  We ran in Brandywine Park and that was simply gorgeous.  Lots of trees – very peaceful and relaxing. 

A little after mile 6 it was up, up, and up.  I saw Kim and she was in her zone.  This is when my legs started to hurt.   

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Beginning at mile 7.5 was the Munchkins Mile.  Lots and lots of munchkins.  I grabbed two and kept going.  It was here that we ran through a nice neighborhood.  The houses were beautiful and I remember what seemed to be like a small park/lots of trees in the middle of the two streets.  

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I remember that after mile 9 someone told me that I had already run the most difficult part of the race.

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Then it was back to Brandywine Park (more downhill).  

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I almost cried when I saw the mile marker for mile 12.  I was very sore and tired.  The last mile was uphill for 1/2 mile and the rest downhill to mile 13.  That area is “Lawyer’s Row” and I saw a bunch of law firms such as Richards, Layton & Finger; Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP;  and Young Conaway Stargatt & Taylor, LLP.  I used to work at the American Bar Association so I recognized those firms.

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I was so happy to see Mile 13.  I did stop for a few seconds to catch my breath and then ran to the finish line.  

Finally done!  I got my medal and a bottle of water.  I kept walking and saw Kim and her mom.  It started to drizzle and at first I was OK, but then eventually I got cold.

I sampled two different Dunkin iced coffees.  The pistachio almond fudge was good but the butter pecan was even better.  Then we got some beer and pizza.

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Our hotel was at about mile 12.5 of the race course.  During the race it was nice running downhill, but heading back to the hotel it was all uphill.  That was rough.  

Once I showered and changed, I met Kim and her mom for lunch.  We ended up going back to the same place I had been to the day before.  This time I had a cheeseburger and a mimosa.

Overall, I thought it was a great race.  The weather was perfect.  It was well organized. There were plenty of water stations and the volunteers were wonderful.  There wasn’t a lot of crowd support, but the views made up for it.  Again, Brandywine Park is gorgeous.  What I did not like were the hills.  I was very sore.  My left leg was bothering me and I stopped a couple of times to stretch.  Want to know what was going through my mind throughout the race?  I told myself over and over again that I should start training on hills.  Someone asked me if I would do it again.  The answer is “yes”, but I would train on hills.  🙂

I definitely recommend this race.  Two thumbs up from me!

Tuesday Topics

This week’s Tuesday Topic is a FREE topic.  Feel free to post any running related blog post.  Remember to Link-up with Kim and Zenaida!  Visit at least two of the other linked posts – the more the merrier!  Remember to come back for later linkers!

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Tuesday Topics: 2019 Shamrock Shuffle Race Recap

Disclaimer:  I received a free entry to the Bank of America Shamrock Shuffle as part of being a BibRave Pro.  Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review, find and write race reviews!  

This week’s topic is “What are your favorite non-running or non-fitness hobbies?”  I ran a race on Sunday so I am going a different route and writing my race recap.  I hope I don’t don’t bore you!

On Sunday I ran one of my favorite races!  Love, love this race!  This was also my first race of the year.  This year was also the 40th Anniversary.

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I’ve been running this race since 2006, but missed it in 2009, 2012, and 2013.  

I picked up my bib on Saturday morning along with my race shirt and a bright green hat just like last year.

The forecast on Saturday morning was that it was supposed to rain.  I was debating between shorts or tights.  I also had a jacket for the rain.

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I woke up Sunday morning at 6am and quickly checked the weather.  No rain!  I got up, drank coffee while eating a Clif Bar, and got ready.  I left my house at 6:45 and drove to the train station.  Luckily I didn’t have to wait too long for the train.  When I arrived downtown I stopped at the Congress Hotel to use the restroom and then went to drop off my gear.

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I had planned to meet up with a few BibRave friends and as I was running towards Buckingham Fountain, I heard my name and saw Wendy.  Then I realized Marcia was also with her and Stephanie (Wendy’s friend).  We chatted for a bit and also took a picture.

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I then saw my BibRave friends!  We chatted for a bit and then went to our corrals.  We were in Wave 1 and had to be there by 8:20 to start at 8:30.

My goal was to have fun and finish in under an hour.  I had my watch on manual lap because I knew the building always mess up the satellite signal.  I also set my watch to just see the current time because I didn’t want to stress out about my splits.

Time to run!

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I took my time with this race.  I stopped at the water stations and also walked.  I soaked it all in because I rarely go downtown anymore and it was nice to be there.  Also, I did get tired, not sure why but my legs just wouldn’t run faster.  🙂  I did warm up a bit but then would also cool down and warm up again.  Still it was much better than being too cold or too hot.  And definitely better that it wasn’t raining.

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I was surprised to see my time for my 1st mile because I didn’t realize I was going that fast (I also had to stop before mile 1 because one of the shoelaces came untied).  I then just made an effort to slow down because I knew it was going to bite me later on.  Yep, it did.  I ended up with positive splits.  🙂

This race starts and ends in the same place as the Chicago Marathon.  While the crowd support isn’t like the marathon, there is plenty to cheer and support you.  

Once done I had planned to meet up again with my BibRave friends at Buckingham Fountain, but as I was walking towards gear check, I saw Stephanie and Wendy again.  Then I saw Marcia.  We wanted a picture of our medal with The Bean.  It took us a while to get there because some streets were still closed and we had to find an alternate route.  Anyway, by then I was hungry and cold and then decided to head home after the picture.

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In case you didn’t know, I love this race.  My plan is to keep running it every year unless there is a reason that I cannot do it.

Tuesday Topics

This week’s Tuesday Topic:  What are your favorite non-running or non-fitness hobbies?  You can write about this topic, or feel free to post any running related blog post.  Remember to Link-up with Kim and Zenaida!  Visit at least two of the other linked posts – the more the merrier!  Remember to come back for later linkers!


Rock ‘n’ Roll Denver Half Marathon Recap

Disclaimer:  I received a free entry to the Rock ‘n’ Roll Denver Half Marathon as part of being a BibRave Pro.  Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review, find and write race reviews!

This past Sunday I ran my 70th half marathon and my 39th in my goal to run a half marathon in each state.  I was supposed to go last year but had to cancel a few weeks prior to race day.  I cannot remember why I didn’t go but let’s continue with my recap for this year.

My flight to Denver left at 8:35am and I arrived after 10:30am.  While waiting at the airport in Chicago, I did some research on transportation to/from the airport and hotel.  SuperShuttle was $30 each way and the Denver Airport Trail was $9 each way.  Once I landed, I quickly walked to the platform and purchased my ticket.  As soon I got inside the train, the doors closed and I was on my way downtown.  

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Once downtown I walked a mile to my hotel.  Luckily it was ready and I left my stuff in the room and went out to get something to eat.  I ate a burger and drank a beer and felt so much better afterwards.  Then I took a Lyft to the expo.  It was OK.  I haven’t run a RnR race in years so I wasn’t sure what to expect.  I did buy some shoes and socks.

There was a poster and a shirt being sold at the expo with the finishers names.

I like the color of the shirt that was in the goody bag.  Still not impressed with the rest of the stuff.

Sunday morning I got up at 6am.  The race began at 7 and the start line was about 10 minutes away.  I got ready and drank coffee while eating a Clif Bar.  It was in the low 40s and I had debated on whether to wear shorts or tights.  I went with the shorts and compression socks.  I also wore a Oiselle Wazzie Wool layer underneath my BibRave shirt and never got too hot nor cold.

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I had specific instructions from my coach on the paces for this race.  I wrote it down in a piece of paper and also on my hand.  I was determined to stick to the plan since this race was supposed to be a long workout.  I’ve been doing really good in my training and figured that it would be an “easy” run.  Spoiler alert:  It was HARD!  I didn’t realize that the altitude was going to affect me that much.

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The first 2 miles were supposed to be at warm up pace.  I started off faster than I wanted to so I took some walking breaks.  After mile 2, I was supposed to run 4 miles at an 11:50 pace.  I couldn’t do it.  I began to feel very tired and could not pick up the pace.  At one point I accidentally hit the lap button.  I really struggled the rest of the race.  I was basically counting down each mile.  I also felt lightheaded.  

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At one point a spectator told me that I was doing good and that I had 2 miles to go.  I started to cry because I wanted to be done.  I was still feeling tired and struggling.   🙁  I don’t think I’ve ever struggled so much during a half marathon.

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I thought the course was OK.  The weather was perfect for running but it was so sunny and the sun was in my eyes for most of the race.  I was squinting so much and I think that and the altitude are the reasons I got a headache.  It was a bit better when I got to City Park.  It was so pretty there but that got boring after a while.  <<I think I was just in a bad mood.  🙂

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For most of the course there were no spectators.  It was quiet.  There was plenty of water and Gatorade at the water stops.  The course was mostly flat with 2 or 3 uphills.  The best part was getting to the finish line because it was downhill.  As soon as I knew I was close, I took off.  I was so happy to be done!

The medal is pretty cool and I am happy to have earned it.

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Another race done and another medal.

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Thanks to Athlinks for the reminder that this was my 70th half marathon and that I have now completed 162 races.

Linking up with MarciaPatti, and Erika for Tuesdays on the Run.

TuesdaysOnTheRun

Elmhurst 4 on the 4th Race Recap

On Wednesday I ran one of my favorite races in the Chicago area – Elmhurst 4 on the 4th.  I’ve run this race since 2013 and have always had a great time.  I like the price, the distance, and the location.  It is very easy to get there and I always find parking..FREE parking.

I left later than usual and even thought I didn’t park in my usual spot, I still managed to park close to the start line.  Then I got my bib and met the Oiselle girls for a picture.

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Let’s go back to my bib.  I gave the volunteer my name and she found it on the roster.  I remember hearing the number 24 or something like that.  Once I got my bib, I didn’t look at it and just went to meet up with the Oiselle girls.  I have a Fitletic belt and use the toggles for my bib.  Again, I did not look at it.

I talked to Heather and Kathleen for a few minutes and then we lined up.  It was already sunny and HOT.

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This race is not a big race but there are a few people cheering for you.  There is just something about running in a small town for a race.  I knew I wasn’t going to get a PR.  I started off too fast and then paid for it at the end.  Still, I don’t think it was too bad.

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I did walk a few times because I also got too hot.  I didn’t have a visor with me because that morning I checked the weather report and it was supposed to be overcast.  Luckily there was some shade and that helped.

This course has a few hills.  Not too many but the worst one is right before the finish line.  I know this but I curse every single time.  🙂

At the finish line, I got a water bottle and an ice cold washcloth to cool me down.  I was sweating a lot.

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.I walked for a bit to cool down before going home.

In my car is when I had a feeling that something was wrong with my bib number.  I remember hearing the number 24 but not 25.  I just wanted to get home to shower and eat.  I knew there was nothing I could do about it so I decided to handle it at home.

Yep, I got the wrong bib.  Once the results were available on Athlinks,  I couldn’t find my name but did find my results with the bib number I used to run the race.

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I emailed the race director right away and explained the situation.  After a few emails back and forth, the problem was resolved.  

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I also checked Kim’s name and she was given a new bib number to run.  Glad that worked out too.

I highly recommend this race to everyone.  It is always fun and the perfect way to start off the holiday.

Linking up with MarciaPatti, and Erika for Tuesdays on the Run.

TuesdaysOnTheRun

Soldier Field 10 Mile Recap

Disclaimer:  I received a free entry to the Soldier Field 10 Mile as part of being a BibRave Pro.  Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review, find and write race reviews!

This past Saturday I ran the Soldier Field 10 Mile.  This race is one of my favorites.  The first time I did this race was in 2009 and this year was my 7th time running it.

I had to stay late at work on Friday so I couldn’t go to Fleet Feet to get my bib.  Thankfully my friend, Claudia, got it for me.  I like the color of the shirt.

It was supposed to be a HOT one.  Man, we complained for so long about the winter and Mother Nature came back with a vengeance.

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Saturday morning I woke up, got ready, and drove to Soldier Field.  I love that they offered FREE parking to race participants.  I met Claudia to get my bib and then we used the bathroom.  There were plenty of port-a-potties outside but we went inside the stadium (the start line was inside).  No line…ever better!

My left leg had been bothering me so I wasn’t sure how do running 10 miles.

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The race began at 7am.  I was in corral K but moved to L to start with Claudia.  We had to wait about 15 minutes before we could start running.  It felt good inside because it was shaded and there was a slight breeze.

As soon as I got outside, I could feel the heat. I knew it wasn’t going to be a good race.  I don’t remember it ever being this hot on race day.  I was feeling OK for about 3 miles and then it went downhill.  The sun felt so hot and I took my time by walking and running.

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At the runaround point the announcement teased us by saying that we looked like we could use some ice (while the song “Ice Ice Baby” was playing).  I thought for sure we would get some ice at the next water station.  Nope.  It was Nuun and water.  I did get an extra cup of water to pour over my head and that helped a little. 

At this point my goal was not to pass out and just to finish.  I didn’t care about my time.  My left was hurting even more but I kept running and walking.

Did I tell you how hot it was?  I was happy to cross the finish line and to get my medal.  It was cool to finish inside Soldier Field. 

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I stayed for a little bit to see Heather and Claudia by the finish line.  Then I went home.  I was hungry and tired.  In the past I’ve stayed a bit longer to hang out with friends and enjoy my free beer.

Love that Athlinks provides FREE race photos.  However, I will admit that I cringed when I saw the photos and almost did not post the one below.  All I see is my big, bloated and round stomach.  🙁2018SoldierField10Mile-18

My finish time is 2:17:21.  That is definitely my worst Soldier Field 10 Mile race.  According to Athlinks, my worst time was 1:55:45 in 2017 and my PR is 1:41:56 in 2015.  

Facebook reminded me of the first time I did that race.  I was thinner back then.  Sigh.  

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Another race done and another medal.  I have now completed 160 races.

Linking up with MarciaPatti, and Erika for Tuesdays on the Run.

TuesdaysOnTheRun