Thursday, November 22, 2012

Widdle Waddle Half Marathon race report

Quadzuki, day one... we decided to take the offer of the early start at start our half marathon at 8 rather than 9 -- even if that meant we would have our time recorded as 3:00:00. Who cares? Today was just about getting through it.

Our strategy -- which makes it sound as if we really thought about it a lot -- was to run the first 4 miles of this race and save our legs for the next three. We then plan on running the first 6 of the next race, the next 8 of the race after that, and then the entire half marathon on Sunday. Oof. Tired just thinking about it!
We got to Gas Works Park relatively early so we could pick up our numbers and -- surprise! -- cute hats. Yay for the hats! I will say that it would have been funny if they had embroidered "drumsticks" on the side -- where they would have sort-of looked like wings AND made the hats look a bit like a turkey. Well, a bit. But the hats were warm, fit our beast-sized heads, and were a cute surprise. So yay to you, Chief Giblet!
Only a few people took them up on the offer of an early start -- I think we had about 7 or 8 of us with big blue circles on our bibs. The rest of the runners at the 8am start were the full marathoners -- also not a huge crowd, but some folks. We walked around the park a little bit, enjoying the use of a proper restroom rather than a porta potty and posing for some very fine action photos:

After a brief course talk, where most of us pretended we knew what he meant about the turnaround, the route up the hill, etc., we got started. The half runners were asked to line up at the back .. and at some point, were told to just run straight up the hill and back. But we weren't really sure what that meant.... so we ended up going up and over the hill. Oh, great, already we were lost...

But eventually we just got onto the Burke-Gilman Trail, and settled in to a run. I had worried about crowding, but the little run up the hill (and the fact that so many of the runners were running either the Quadzilla or Quadzuki) meant that paces were slow and people were stretched out. 

We spent most of the time pretty much on our own -- which was fine. And when we hit mile four after about 37 minutes, we made ourselves stop and walk. This is surprisingly hard to do... both from a pride standpoint (it's hard to let yourself be passed) but also from a physical standpoint. Because you've been running, so it just makes sense to keep running. But walk we did. 

Our walk gave us the opportunity to chat, plan our remaining half marathons (very exciting!), and just enjoy the surprisingly dry day. 

Because I didn't really listen to the course talk, I had assumed we would turn around, well, at the turn-around point. But Wil reminded me that the full marathoners would only have an additional 6 miles at the end... so they had to run longer. Oh. Well then, I wonder where we were supposed to turn around? We saw a half marathoner heading back toward us and asked her -- she said she came to a crossing where there were big yellow turn-around markings... So on we went, and right around 6.55 miles, we found it. So we turned around and headed back.

Toward the end of our race, we saw the runners from the normal start coming toward us. We waved and smiled.. and felt a bit funny about having started early. But, hey, we wanted to get things done early. So we were quite happy to stroll hand in hand across the finish line in about 2:45... or 3:00:00 as the records will show.

We took a post-race photo, had some potato chips and chocolate milk (ultra kibble!), and then happily headed home for a quick hot tub and some Thanksgiving preparations. Quadzuki day 1 in the books!

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