South Hero, VT
Half Marathon #70
Weather - very chilly with strong winds, overcast (very light misting mid-race)
L and I are not on the same flights. I booked as soon as I found reasonably priced legs. By the time she booked, the same flights were NOT the same price, so she was on completely different airlines even. My first leg to ORD (Chicago) left Denver at 8:47 am. I left the house just after 6 and got there in plenty of time. First flight was on time. I somehow got put in premium seating. This was one of the best flight experiences of my life. I had a footrest, a super reclining seat. My own tv with FREE movies (I watched Rock of Ages - best movie I've seen in ages). To tell you how much room I had, I could stick my legs straight out in front of me and not touch the seat. Also, I had to unbuckle my seat belt to reach stuff under the seat. Honestly.
We land on time in Chicago and it is FREEZING AND COLD AND RAINY. Blech. My flight out? Delayed. Obviously. We left about an hour late. (L's connection was in Midway, also Chicago, and her flight left on time and landed early). So L had to wait for me in Hartford. The car rental facility was off site (of course). By the time we got the car, it was 5:40 pm. We had about a 4 hour drive to Burlington, Vermont, and we still had to stop and get dinner.
Luckily, we found an Applebee's in Massachusetts. They were packed, but we were able to get seated at the bar. I have a cold, so I didn't notice, but L said the food tasted funny. Great. Since L had come straight from work to the airport, she had not slept in some ungodly amount of time. I had the drive to the hotel. Thankfully, it was all interstate, so we didn't get stuck in traffic of any kind. We stopped at ONE Walgreen's just inside the border of Vermont and were able to get our souvenirs (way too easy). We arrived at the super classy Econo Lodge in Shelburne just before 10:00 pm. Not impressed with the weather forecast:
The race was about 30 minutes away, but didn't start until 8:30, so we did not need to get up crazy early. We did, however, have to make sure we were packed and ready to go since we would not have time to shower after the race. Yuck.
We got up around 6:15 and left about 20 minutes later. We have gotten really efficient at getting ready after doing this so many times. We stopped and put some gas in on the way to the race. They information we had received warned about parking filling up close to the start/finish area, so we wanted to get there early so we wouldn't risk the "up to one mile away" parking. No time for that. We got the LAST SPOT in the close parking lot. We went inside and got our bibs and pretty cool long sleeve shirts. Nothing to do now but sit around for an hour.
|View from the best parking spot - PRETTY trees!|
The course, as I found out the day before we left (yeah, yeah, I probably should have LOOKED at it), was an out and back along the bay (a bay?). It was VERY windy and very chilly. By the end of the race, L would say that it was our coldest yet.
Anyway, the first 2 miles were on road, and then we moved to a hard dirt packed road. It was pretty hilly, which we expected. Again, we we were NOT prepared for the freezing cold gale force winds.
L had custom designed shirts for us and we had TONS of runners and volunteers congratulate us and want to talk to us about our journey. It was pretty neat. There was thankfully a downhill finish, and we crossed the line together for state 50!!
Official Time - 2:31:04
Overall Place - 279/313
Division Place - 49/59
Garmin Time - 2:31:25
Garmin Distance - 13.18 miles
Garmin Pace - 11:30
Mile 1 - 10:46
Mile 2 - 10:35
Mile 3 - 11:21
Mile 4 - 11:15
Mile 5 - 11:32
Mile 6 - 11:12
Mile 7 - 11:15
Mile 8 - 11:37
Mile 9 - 12:35
Mile 10 - 12:16
Mile 11 - 11:36
Mile 12 - 12:49
Mile 13 - 10:50
Mile 13.1ish - 9:55
We got our water, grabbed our bags out of the car, got a random kid to take pictures of us with our medals and headed into the school to change. The bathrooms were locked, but we found an unlocked janitor's closet and changed there. (I could not make this stuff up). We left the school at 11:20. We estimated about a four hour drive, and L's flight left first at 5:10.
Thoughts on the race:
- Plan for cold and wind. It IS October. I don't know if this weather was normal or not, but I'm really glad I had a throwaway. At first I was concerned I hadn't brought capris, but that ended up being ok.
- Aid stations every 2 miles. Very well stocked with water and Heed. They gave Hammer gels at mile 4.
- VERY friendly volunteers.
- Easy and basic pick up (but if you want a close parking spot DO get there early, or you are parking further away and ON the course so it is harder to get out)
- Inexpensive and still got a unique shirt AND a medal - this was the 42nd annual running of this race, they must be doing something right.
- VERY VERY pretty scenery. If you can get past the cold and the wind.
- Would recommend, just maybe make better travel arrangements than I did :D
The travel gods were on our side and we got to Five Guys (20 miles from the airport around 2:40) with "plenty" of time to get burgers and cajun fries. We ate in the car, and dropped off the car around 3:20. PLENTY OF TIME.
Breezed through security... until my bag got flagged for additional inspection. Ha ha, the joke is on you. Go ahead and take out my race clothes. Blech.
Had about 20 minutes until L's flight left (her connection was in Charlotte). My flight left on time, and I was pretty distraught to learn it was almost a 4 hour flight to Dallas. Gross. We watched the Amazing Spider Man, and then... 2 hours still to go. I couldn't sleep. Arrived on time in Dallas. I got some food at Pizza Hut (I eat GREAT when I travel), then found an outlet and watched Netflix until boarding time.
At which time I discover the gate has been moved ALL THE WAY TO THE OTHER SIDE OF THE TERMINAL. Run over there, only to realize... delayed. OF COURSE. I was already on the latest flight out. That figures. Our 10:25 flight didn't take off until after 11 pm. I think I dozed for about 30 minutes, and we landed (late) at 11:45.
I had to wait 20 minutes for a shuttle to my car and by the time I got home, it was 1:15 am. (Which was GREAT considering I had to get up at 5:45 to shower - remember, I still hadn't showered after the run, and get to work).
LONGEST (yet shortest) weekend ever. Waiting for me when I got home?
|I GOT AN AWARD!!|