Running is fun! I know a few people might disagree with that statement…I might even at mile 24 next week, but really I feel so blessed every time I finish a race. Most people get teary at the finish, I get teary at every single start line because I’m thrilled to be there, be healthy and be doing something that makes my heart sing.
RUNNERS HIGH - If it didn’t exist we wouldn’t do this crazy races all the time!
Team Odwalla was out in full force today. It was so exciting to see people on the course and to be rooting for teammate Elaine who was hoping for her first sub 2 hour 1/2 marathon (which she got!!). I also talked a lot with wonderful Amy B, who was running with her sister (Kate a Team Marathon Ambassador) and mom!! I love reading about all of these families that run together, it’s so cool.
Top right: Kate, Amy and mom Kathleen; sporting my super star Odwalla Jacket (might be brighter than the Saucony ViziPro); Elaine and me heading for food; Elaine, me and Jon; me and Amy; me with a large surfboard.
I may love running, but I do not particularly care for 4:30 am wake up calls. The race started at 6:13 and was about 40 minutes away. So truly I wok up, put on clothes and headed out the door with a protein shake!
The course itself does spend a great deal of time running out and back along the water. So if you are not from Florida it is truly beautiful and a course that is well worth running! My only complaint was that unlike most races where you are crowded at the start and then it loosens up…this one was fine at the start and felt more constricted as the race progressed because we were down to one lane. I spent a lot of time trying not to clip the person in front of me or dodging in to the lanes of traffic and back when it was safe.
As most of you know my goal today was to smile from the start to the finish, not to push and to come out of today feeling like I can run 26.2 next weekend in Philly… SUCCESS! We faced some major ocean winds for about 6 miles, but I felt really good the whole time...and really when you get to look at the ocean, the beach and the blue skies…you have to be a little forgiving of some wind gusts!
I decided not to look at my Garmin during the race, so that I wouldn’t be tempted to push or slow down. This plan allowed me truly to run by feel and proved once again that when I get my brain out of the way my body can do so much more than I expect. I crossed in 1:55 which is faster than I planned, but felt easy and fun!
One of the best things about 13.1 Fort Lauderdale is the finish area. This race finishes directly on the beach, which means you can truly just hang around for hours relaxing!
If you like adult beverages there is a rather large area of free drinks for all finishers. Michelob Ultra and Barefoot wine are the major sponsors…I might have had a little mimosa with friends. :)
Lora and Bryan are two of the fastest runners I know, so I of course need a picture with them to try and help it rub off on me. Speedy Lora is a sweetheart (she won the Komen 5K I did recently) and this was her first ever half marathon! I can’t wait to see her progress in the coming months because she totally inspires me!
Drinks are definitely the focus of the post race. Minus the black beans, rice and chicken I didn’t want much else from the food tent…but then that isn’t why I run races, so no biggie to me!
If you love the beach, love flat courses, love medium sized races, love running in shorts in November…well this is a great race! Unless the weather does something crazy, it looks like I am up for 26.2 next weekend… WOHOO.
I am grateful for easy race day parking
I am grateful for organized shuttles
I am grateful for speedy gear check
I am grateful for my Sweaty Band
I am grateful for running along the ocean