Rehoboth Beach 1/2 Marathon Race Recap

Half Marathon #28
State #20

Gosh, it’s been a LONG time since I’ve been able to post a 1/2 marathon race recap. The backstory on this race…Stephanie and Jess ran this race last year and it seemed like the perfect Delaware race. Jess and I made plans in the summer for this to be my comeback 1/2 marathon and to have a #renuunion. The course was perfect for a comeback post surgery– flat and several miles of “trail” so it would be easy on my hip. I definitely planned this race LONG before I knew that Auburn would be anywhere near the SEC championship game, but the trip was worth missing the game.

Pre-Race

I flew into DC to spend Thursday night with Jess and her family. It’s highly entertaining to go from a home of one to a family of 5. Let’s just say I was laughing the entire time I was at her house. We had the night out at her running store and grabbed dinner and it was great catching up.

Friday morning Jess taught pilates and I was able to take her class, we went home and got ready and hit the rode to drive to Rehoboth Beach. The weather was NASTY. Rained the entire drive, and what should’ve taken 3 hours took over 4. We did stop a few times which was great so I could do my stretches (I was a bit crazy making sure my hip didn’t tighten back up from all the sitting).

We stopped at packet pickup before heading to the hotel (It’s really just a packet pickup with one vendor). Our hotel, The Avenue Inn, was amazing! Literally 2 blocks from the start, free breakfast, free cookies, and a great staff.IMG_5353

We did a little shopping to loosen up the legs and then grabbed dinner with Michelle. I had my first Nicoboli at Nicola Pizza (kinda like a calzone but way better) and then we were back in the room to get ready for the race.IMG_5354

I was NERVOUS. I tried my best to not let my mind get the best of me and stay positive that my hip would be fine. The weather predictions were chilly-around 38 at the start with winds around 16mph. I decided on my lululemon shorts, oiselle luxe layer shirt, nuun hat, and pro compression socks. We got ready for bed and before I knew it, it was 5:45am.

Race Day

Back to the usual routine: bagel with peanut butter, nuun, and a little coffee this time. Michelle came down to our hotel for the start and we met Stephanie in the lobby. It was around 6:45 and we headed to the start.

the group right before the race
the group right before the race

Miles 1-8

I was anxious and nervous and Stephanie helped calm me down. We started together, and had a goal of starting out slower (Corey knows me too well and gave me some goals to try and reel my emotions in).IMG_5365

Well, I kinda sucked at that plan. I just felt GOOD. I couldn’t stop smiling. There was no pain!!! The first few miles were through the neighborhoods and the actual oceanfront and were part of an out and back. The course passed the finish line area and went through more residential areas towards the trail/path. The course was well staffed with volunteers and plenty of water stops along the way. I took my Salted Caramel Gu (which rocked my world and race btw) at the last water stop before hitting the path/trail.

I was excited to hit the trail part of the race. I use the term trail loosely, it isn’t really technically, just dirt path that had rocky areas here and there. No climbs-nice and flat. The only downside was the mud and puddles. It had rained a ton the day before and there was a lot of puddle jumping and hoping to not slip in mud, but it was beautiful out!

Miles 9-13.1

I felt like the race really flew by..there is something about an out and back race that keeps you entertained because you have other runners to look at and cheer for on the other side of the course. I loved seeing Jess and how well she was doing. The out and back on the trail was around mile 8.5/9. You exit the trail, hit a neighborhood for a turn around and hit the trail again. I still felt great. Enjoying my music and the other runners. The race seemed to just fly by.IMG_5387 I figured the trail would be a bit more muddy and difficult on the way back since so many runners had been on it. There were several times towards the end of it that you had to go single file (or jump in a mud puddle) and that was fine with me.

With about 1/2 a mile or so left in the trail I told myself, “you did it without falling!” and literally, BOOM. I ate it. BAD. Two women were super nice to check on me but I got up quickly and kept going. My right hip was stinging but it was so cold I couldn’t feel how bad it was cut. Thank goodness I had on long sleeves, they saved my arms. I cut my knees, and hip and bruised my shoulder. A minute or so back into the run, I said, “that really sucked” and told the woman who helped me to go ahead on the single trail. She said, “No, I’ve been chasing you this race, you go ahead.” That actually made me feel pretty good. I didn’t let the fall do me in, or slow me down (pace was consistent-splits in garmin stats below).

This gives you an idea of the fall, this was taken 2 days later and its been well over a week and it's still purple.
This gives you an idea of the fall, this was taken 2 days later and its been well over a week and it’s still purple. Some of those are cuts and 2 of the smaller pink marks are actually my scars from the surgery.

Once we hit the street again I knew I had less than 2 miles to go. It was go time. I never really hit a pain place in this race, I just ran comfortably. The last mile I did my best to keep up with a girl and I thanked her for pushing me (spoiler-she beat me out by a few seconds). I heard my watch hit the 13 and knew I was close to the finish. I could see the white tents and was so excited to be done.

Official Results

1:52:56 
309/1184 overall
134/778 females
25/63 Females 30-34

Garmin Results Screen shot 2013-12-12 at 7.21.20 PM Screen shot 2013-12-12 at 7.20.55 PM Screen shot 2013-12-12 at 7.20.44 PM Post Race

I grabbed my medal and went straight to the medical area. I asked for ice (my hip was sore from the fall and bleeding a little) but they didn’t have any. A medical area without ice. They told me to go inside the finisher party tent and ask for ice there. Thank goodness someone found one of the race organizers and she went in and got a bag of ice for me. I couldn’t find Jess and I was freezing so I walked back to the hotel to get my warmer clothes.IMG_5368

Turns out Jess was on her way to find me, so she came back to the room and we regrouped and decided to go back to the finish party to watch the marathoners and get the free beer. Jess told me she PR’d and was 6th female (after planning on just running to see how she would do-no goal in mind and she ran a sub 1:30)!! It was obvious to me that she placed and we waited around for her to get her award.IMG_5376

We finished up our beers and were able to spend time with Mary and Katie from the Oiselle team before heading back to the room to shower up.IMG_5378photo (14)

We spent the afternoon walking around the town and then at Dogfish Head Brewpub watching the Auburn game. It was an amazing weekend!!IMG_0329 IMG_0328photo (13)

Sunday we drove back to Virginia and I had a little time in the snow (which I’ve only seen about 8 times in my life so I was really excited).IMG_5403

Overall

LOVED this race for so many reasons. It’s small, well organized and Rehoboth is a great town.

Yay

The race course-flat and fast and partly easy trail
The organizers-great private facebook group with tons of involvement and help
The post race- free beer and tons of food (pancakes, burgers, mac and cheese, fruit to name a few)
The town of Rehoboth-small, affordable, and great character.
Our hotel, the Avenue Inn

Nay

If I’m being picky…

No ice at the medical tent
Unisex shirts

Bling

LOVE it. It’s huge. The lanyard has the year and logo on it as well. IMG_0334 IMG_0335

Final Thoughts

This race was truly the perfect comeback race. I spent it with one of my running best friends, had a great course and a great time. My body is back to running and this really showed me how much I will be capable of when I actually do speed work and train with a good base. I know I didn’t run a perfectly even paced race and my splits were kind of all over the place, but I just ran with my heart. And had fun. This race, to me, is what running should be about. Small, local, community, friendship.

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Elizabeth

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