Tacoma Narrows 1/2 Race Recap

The Details:
We finished!!!  2:21:17 for a 3’ish minute PR for Michelle!!! 
The Event:
I loved everything about this race from start to finish.  Registration and packet pick up were quick and easy.  This one can get expensive if you don’t register early though.  The more participants the more the price goes up, so opening day registration is almost a must as it’s still pretty pricey even with early bird pricing. 
We didn’t use them, but there were shuttles since it’s a point to point race.  It seemed like that process was going smoothly and that there were plenty of them.
They said there would be plenty of outhouses at the start line…not so.  The line got crazy long weaving all over the landing field of the airport.  It was confusing too, were there two lines, or just one crazy long one?   People were jumping in and out of what they thought was a second line, which we did and it ended up being shorter but got a few dirty looks for it. 
The aid stations were exactly where they said they would be, all the volunteers, officers, and other runners were awesome!  So much encouragement and support along the way!  
The finish line/tents and festivities were fun.  I never really stick around all that long, but what I did experience was great.  I did make a stop by the Fleet Feet VIP tent to say hi.   
I would totally do this one again.  My only hesitation is that it’s an August race.  I know in years past it was dangerous hot, this year not so.  I would not want to do this one in high temps since there is little to no shade.  I will be mulling this one over until registration time next year! 
Waiting at the start line.

My Race:
What a fun day!!!  I’m happy to report I have my running mojo back!!!  I felt amazing and was having fun clear through to the finish line!  Not to say there were not a few things that were starting to hurt but it was normal running pain. 

It’s no secret I went into this one with a fair amount of worry and self doubt.  But, thankfully I felt optimistic when I woke up and saw the overcast sky and cool temp.  My favorite running weather for sure!  I had zero aches or pains when I woke up, and my pre-race prep was picture perfect!  It all added up to me feeling really confident when we toed the start line!

Early morning drop off!

Oddly enough the part of the race I dreaded the most ended up being my favorite!  We were so good about sticking to a pace we knew we could handle that the incline over the bridge was not bad, and the hill into war memorial park wasn’t too bad either.  It’s short at least.  Plus, I knew Dad was waiting at the top of the hill with ice/oranges/and Nuun.  Knowing he was there totally gave me something to look forward to! 
It was pretty flat with small little hills here and there after that.  There was a hill leading into the 10th mile that I had no idea was there and it was hard, really hard.  Afterwards talking to other runners that hill got a lot of people.  Even though it caught me off guard I felt pretty strong getting up it.  After that it was literally all down hill with the last mile being a fast downhill finish. 
Wearing the visor worked until mile 8.  It was driving me crazy so I ditched it at mile 8.  Elya was waiting there for us with a blister surgery kit just in case (didn’t need it) and she was kind enough to take my sweaty visor for me.  It was nice though to tuck a few ice cubes under the band of the visor around my head and let them do a slow melt at mile 4.  Even though it wasn’t hot the body temp still gets up there and I wanted to stay cool.   

Elya’s picture of us at mile 8. 

The water bottle worked great.  I took in 9oz of fluid in 9’ish miles.  That is a ton more than I normally do.  Usually it’s a small sip at every aid station, so every 2 to 4 miles depending on the race.  This time I was drinking every mile if not more.  I started feeling antsy with it though and since Dad was waiting for us again mile 9.5 I took the last of it and tossed the water bottle to him.  I felt great and knew I could finish with just taking water at the last aid station.  Drank some and dumped some. 
I skipped the GU this time and just went with Power Bar Gel bites.  I took 2 at 4 miles, one at 7 (I think) and one last one at 9.5.  Never felt like I was losing energy and no issues with muscle cramps.
I was so proud of Michelle towards the end.  The last 1.5 got dicey and I know she had to dig deep and really focus on putting one foot in front of the other.  It paid off because she got a PR out of it!  Not bad at all since she wasn’t even going to run this race until a few weeks ago!  Now we just have one more the end of Sep and we will be Half Fanatics!!!! 
There is such a long list of people to thank for getting us both to the start line and through this race!  In no particular order:
Elya – I know it was hard to be there watching Michelle and I run what was going to be our second 1/2 towards our Half Fanatic goal.  Thank you for being there with the “just in case” stuff and for being excited and happy for us.  When you’re ready after this sweet little girl arrives we will run those 3 races together that you need!  Maybe, just maybe we can get you to your PR goal as well…that is super fast for me though.  🙂 
Dad and Val – Thank you for making the drive from E WA just to watch me run past you a few times.  It means a lot to me that you wanted to be here and be part of it!  And, knowing that Dad was there at miles 4 and 9.5 totally gave me something to look forward to and made me smile.  Plus, the ice was perfect! 
Sky – For being the best little training partner ever and yelling “go, go” and “run, run” when I slow down. 
Mark – My early morning runs mean no sleeping in because Sky wakes you up.  And, my night time run means you come home from work and are on instant dinner and Sky duty.  Thank you for the support and encouragement and for being at the finish with Sky this weekend.  It meant the world to see my babe and my baby there waiting for me.  Love you!
The Fleet Feet Staff and Family – Every single word of advice and encouragement makes a difference, especially with this one because I was so worried after See Jane!
Bob – For suggesting Michelle register for this one!  And, for supporting her so she can get her training runs in! 
Michelle – I love you girl.  You know someone differently after you run a race with them…we truly are Sweat Sisters!  This is such a challenging and fun goal and we are doing it!!!  Together!!!!  Can’t wait for the next one!  
Eleanor – For being at the finish line before you had to dash off to work!  Your excitement, support, and understanding of what we are going through as runners mean a lot.  Thank you so much!
Amy – For being so encouraging and excited to see us at the start.  I LOVE how much you love to run, it’s infectious! 
To those that sent personal messages and emails after See Jane with suggestions, advice, forums and boards to help me figure out how to run in the heat…Thank You!  Everyone that offered words of support it made a difference!  I was so worried going into this one, and you all helped make it better! 
Now for a little rest, vacation and starting the training cycle over to get ready for #3! 



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