Sunday, May 9, 2010

Kirkland Half Marathon

Not sure if it is Lindsay's fault or my fauit... or some kind of co-dependent thing. But Friday afternoon on the way home I signed us up for the Kirkland Half Marathon, and we ran it today.

It was a glorious day -- perfect half marathon weather, with a cool but bright and sunny sky and it didn't get too warm until the very end. (Hence perfect HALF marathon weather...).

Picked Lindsay up and carpooled to Kirkland, colonizing an empty parking lot when we arrived. Lots of milling about pre-race, both of us a bit surprised by the numbers of people who were there. They let the walkers go at 7:05, and sent us after them at 7:35. We dropped ourselves in the 10-minute "corral" and both commented on how surreal it was that we were there.

With little fanfare an airhorn sounded and we were off. The map had shown two big hills before mile 4. The first one was within the first mile, and wasn't too bad. I started to think that I had worried too much about hills... until mile 3, when we saw The Hill. We started running up it, but then decided that there's really no shame in walking up a steep hill -- especially when the apartment complex half way up calls itself "The Ascent".

But we hit the top, rounded a corner, and hit our first water stop. Then we ran for miles and miles along a road... at least a few of which were a long, slow, uphill. So I guess, when the man at the shop said "I hope you like hills!", he meant it.

We loped along, mocking the other runners as needed, getting cheered on by a lovely aging lesbian couple (yes, in a Subaru...), thanking the cops and the volunteers, all the way down to Bridle Trails Park -- which was right around the half-way point. At the water stop after mile 7 we ate a gel each. Me: chocolate Hammer Gel. Lindsay: tri-berry Gu.

Then we started going downhill fast. Thump thump thump past the garbage dump -- and the nice young man with his electric guitar and tiny amp, playing "Chariots of Fire". Nice.

We crossed 405 on one of those pedestrian bridges (oh, so THAT's who uses those!) and then thumped farther downhill. A few more twists and turns and we were suddenly on the waterfront near Kirkland -- and the 10-mile point. Hooray!

We skipped most of downtown Kirkland -- running through the waterfront park rather than on the roads -- and then we were off again. We passed two cops who said "Last hill! You're looking great!" We asked for permission to walk up the hill, which they granted. Of course, a few blocks later, we came to another hill. I guess you can't trust the cops.

Some more winding through Kirkland 'hoods, past megamansions and the final water stop. Suddenly we veered off into a park I didn't know existed, and then we hit the 12 mile marker -- yay!

We ran along an old road that's now a pedestrian boardwalk through a nature preserve, turned left at the Michaels, and hit the home stretch. We crossed with a clock time of about 2:33 -- but no final results yet. Oh, and we both got shout outs as we entered the chute.

We turned in our chips, grabbed bottles of water, and an apple each... and then decided to bail. Both of us needed the restorative powers of a Diet Coke. Weird omission: no medals? Really? I was pretty sure Lindsay and I tied for #1 in the Most Awesome Division.

A few random memories: three people wearing the Vibram Five Fingers shoes; the identically dressed duos, and of course, leather legs. Ew.

So, with the result, I can now join the Half Fanatics and hold my head up high. Thanks Lindsay for being my totally awesome running buddy!

1 comment:

  1. Oh Sunny! What a fun Mothers Day with you. Thanks for the crazy last minute adventure. I would not have wanted to do it with anyone else, except Wil of course.