When I moved to North Carolina I was running a lot. I had quite a few half marathons ready to go – most of them in Florida. My first year in North Carolina had a lot of time flying back down south in order to complete some of those commitments. Others I just gave up on.
My second year in North Carolina I decided to go ahead and start extending my state reach. I ran in Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Kentucky, and Ohio. Funny though, because the close states – South Carolina, Virginia, and West Virginia – I haven’t ran in. More importantly, I haven’t ran a half marathon in North Carolina. The only races I’ve wanted to run here might as well have been in another state because they were far enough that I’d have to make a weekend out of it. You know, it’s 90% about that medal.
About three weeks ago I realized that there was going to be a half a marathon near my house. So I decided there’s no time like the present and signed up for it. Did it matter that I hadn’t ran since I did Space Coast in November? Of course not!
Instead I continued to go to OrangeTheory and then ran with my dad twice while I was home. I decided to bank on the fact that my body has gotten through a ton of these things.
Which then led to the day of the race. I didn’t realize that this was the first year they were doing it. There were clearly some kinks to be worked out. For instance: the start line was in line with the parking. The race started at 7:30, but at 7:15 they were still putting the start line together. And they didn’t have a microphone. So when the race started we actually didn’t hear it starting. All of a sudden people were just running. It wasn’t a large crowd which was really nice because the course was just on the side of the road while traffic was still open so for the most part I wasn’t running into people. The only time it was a real issue that we were only slightly coned off was when people were running in two directions. Another sign it was year one: the first two water stations were out by the time I got to them. And look, I know I’m not the fastest runner, but water is necessary in a race like that. It was super hot and humid. In the past I’ve trained and ran in hotter weather, but it’s been a long winter here and no one has trained in heat like that prior to this weekend.
It wasn’t all bad though. The course was pretty flat which was nice. And while I hated that it ran through Trump National Golf Course, I was able to listen to Eminem shit talking Trump during my run which was super amusing. The organizers also made a huge effort to get more water to the later stations for us slow pokes. Also, because the race was on the smaller side, my boyfriend didn’t have to deal with a million people at the end when trying to get a picture. Instead he had to deal with me hauling ass at the end. It was only .1 of a mile, but I was running a 5:36 pace for that last little bit. I was lightning. And I was hot. Mostly hot. I just wanted it over.
All in all, I paid $85 for this race – granted it was last minute. So if you’re considering a mostly flat NC race, sign up early! It has a medal so you know I was happy. But honestly the shirt was so incredibly soft so I’m already starting to forget about the things that made me mad. Even better: I finished. And another state is off my list.