Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Race Review: RunRaleigh Half Marathon Raleigh, NC April 2012

The Race: This was the first  year for the Run Raleigh Half Marathon,   It was purposely limited to a relatively small 1500 racer limit because 5 miles of it were on the Raleigh Greenway Trail system.  It started at Cameron Village in Raleigh.   Here I am ready to leave the house at 5:30am.

And so was Avery, my littlest cheerleader.

What a good sport she was letting us get her up way before she normally wakes up.

It was a comfortably cool morning when we showed up at Cameron Village

One last bit of support from Avery and I went to wait in the port-a-potty line for one final go:
The line for the restrooms was super long.  I would say there was at least 100 of us all still in line as they announced one minute to start time.  We all reassured each other that the event was chip timed so we could always start after the gun and it wouldn't matter for our time or placing (btw we were wrong due to chip time malfunction grrr).  So the gun went off and we all still waited.  I got to use the rest room and then was able to hop in with the very back of the pack as they crossed the mat to start.

I saw my husband Jim and Avery set up on the course at mile 2.5 and surprised me with this sign:  Totally made me grin ear to ear!

My husband was my "course support" by taking my jacket at mile 2.5, providing a new hand-held water bottle for mile 5 and of course having Avery ring a cow bell and yell "GO GO MOMMA!!" at four different spots on the course.  Usually, both my husband and I run the same race, so having a cheering section was a really nice perk!

It was a tough hilly course and even though the net elevation gain was zero (since it started at the same location where it ended), the total elevation gain along the course was about 2,000!  There was also a huge steep hill at the beginning of the final mile where almost everyone was walking.  The best part was the downhill stretch to the finish where I was in a full sprint to the finish line in sight!
Spectator giving me a high five!
Both feet off the ground in full sprint down the hill towards the finish!

My finish time on the clock was 1:58:33, a new PR by 17 minutes!  However I really ran it faster because the race timing company said due to "human error" the start line didn't pick up the chips so nobody got a chip time.  Considering that I started in the very back of the pack (due to long port-a-potty lines), I finished at least 30-60 seconds faster than that but we'll never know the real time.

Afterwards, I enjoyed a beer at the finish area

The Finish:  There definitely was a nice downhill finish, but there wasn't much of an after-party like at other races.  Just a very small beer garden (and the beer wasn't even good!).

Overall, an average race that could definitely stand to make improvements for the future.  Especially in regards to the amount of port-a-pottys at the start and the chip timing system malfunction.  It was a nice scenic tour of the city of Raleigh.

Grade: C

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