Atlanta 1/2 Marathon Race Recap

I have said it before, and I will say it again.  I have mixed emotions about racing at home.  I worry about forgeting things and seem to not really care about running a 1/2 marathon.  And yes, it is easier now, but it is still 13.1 miles.  I hadn’t run this race yet and figured since I would be in Atlanta for Thanksgiving I may as well.  After all, the start is about 5 miles from my house.

Wednesday/Expo
This too wasn’t far from my house.  Except it was downtown.  Which means pay to park.  I paid $9 freaking dollars for 15 minutes in an expo.  I get in and realize that they don’t have the right size women’s shirts.  Like none.  Somehow M’s and L’s weren’t ordered.  I ended up with a men’s small that was more like an XL on me (I later tweeted the Atlanta Track Club and they ordered more and I can switch sizes–which is awesome).  There wasn’t a single thing that I needed at the expo (no freebies either) so I headed home.

I made this dinner for me and P (yay for delicious carbs) and got all of my race stuff together and went to bed.

Pre Race/Start
P got up early to take me to the start.  I met up with Allison and we had a few minutes before the race began.  We did a warm up run, snapped a pic, and parted ways to our corrals.

War Eagle!

I was in Corral B, which seemed surprisingly crowded.  I tried to stay towards the back of the corral to try and take it easy.  The goal was 1:50-2:00 and to not over do it.  It was a little chilly, but perfect for racing.

Miles 1-8
Hills, hills, hills.  This is what I remember. We ran through West Midtown and Midtown towards Piedmont Park.  It is nice to run in my own town-I knew what to expect on most of the roads.  I skipped the first waterstop and felt as though the course was really crowded.  It was hard to get liquids at any of the stops and I was constantly having to watch my step for other runners.

Mile 6-7 was running through the park and I knew Chris (the bro-in-law) would be there with my “nephew” Zeus.  I missed the waterstop because of the crowds and hoped I would be okay for another few miles.  I saw Chris and Zeus and he barked quite loudly when he saw me.  I turned the corner to head up another hill and back through Midtown.

I knew I would soon see Michelle, a local half fanatic, at the water stop at mile 8.  A GU, quick hello and a drink and I was off again.  All I wanted was to get to the finish.

Miles 9-13.1
I was honestly getting bored at this point.  I don’t know if it is because it’s a Thanksgiving day race or because of the location, but the race is quiet.  Not a huge crowd watching, lots of turns throughout the course, and I guess knowing where I was, ended up being boring.

At mile 12 a volunteer said, “You got it, last hill!”  Well, he lied.  The finish had an uphill (technically ended on a downhill but there was still an UP).

Please look at all 3 of our faces.  We look miserable.   Looks like we are starting a downhill after a long uphill.

As I ran through the finishers chute I heard nothing.  I literally felt like I was in a movie and the sound was off.  The finish was actually crowded but no one was cheering.  I almost did the hands in the air to tell them louder but decided to let it be.  Didn’t want to be “that” girl.  I crossed the line and headed to the finishers area to wait for Allison to be done.

Note to self: DO NOT attempt to show off guns while running.  It leads to TERRIBLE pics.  All over the course.

Race Results

1:50:14
1842/8524 overall
480/4316 females
75/629 females 30-34
I just barely hit my goal-but honestly didn’t feel like the effort was that hard for me.  I guess that’s a good thing.

Garmin Results

earned my turkey!!
Post Race
Allison ended up having foot cramp issues and didn’t have the race she hoped for.  I texted her and she said she was okay so I continued to stretch and enjoy the pretty day.  As I waited, I started to notice the pain in my hip/piriformis.  
Allison finished and we snapped another pic and headed home.  She dropped me off and I quickly showered and threw on some casual clothes and headed to her house for Thanksgiving.  It was a very low-key turkey day and I loved every minute of it.  Allison, Chris, Suzanne and I enjoyed a fabulous lunch and laid around all day.  

This is when I made the tree skirt.  We took naps around 10pm and headed to the mall at midnight.  Yes. We are those people.  I could really tell walking in the mall that I had screwed up my hip and ended up taking the entire weekend off from running (which later led to physical therapy…again).
Overall:
Favs:
Local race
Running with Allison
Powerade and Sports Beans
post-race food
Weather

Not so Much:
The shirt
The medal
The course
The crowd support

The Bling:
It has sooo much potential!!  I think it is a pretty boring race medal overall.  I mean, the race is on Thanksgiving…there are so many ways to make the medal more fun.  I do like the lanyard and the weight of it.

Final Thoughts:
If you are looking for a Georgia race, choose another one.  If you happen to be in Atlanta and want more than a turkey trot on Thanksgiving-this is your race.  It’s a good race.  Not great, not bad.  Just good.  It isn’t exactly cheap (I think I paid $70) and there isn’t even an Atlanta Track Club member discount (which should be a member perk if they happen to read this).  The shirt is okay (like the medal-has so much potential but sorta boring).  I will do this race again if I am in town, but won’t adjust my holiday plans just to run it.

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Elizabeth

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5 Comments

  • pretty great pace since it didn't feel too bad and with hills! 🙂 i feel the same way about alot of our local races. they have potential then there is just something lacking. maybe it's just the curse of me being way too into races haha

  • I think that's a great time for this race! It is def hilly like all downtown Atlanta races.

    What's funny to me is the shirt and the medal are exactly the same as last years! The medal ribbon was blue instead of red but it is the same medal. Oh well, they have come up since 2007. The course was different back then (straight up Peachtree from Chamblee). The medal then was the size of a quarter and they gave out a hideous cotton shirt that I have never worn.

    I still have a special place in my heart for this one since it was my first half.

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