On January 14, 2017 I ran in the Charleston Half Marathon in Charleston, SC where I live. This was not on my scheduled list of half marathons for 2017, but it happen by way of Mother Nature. The weekend prior, if you follow my blog, you know that I was supposed to have run in the Mississippi Blues Half Marathon. We actually made the 700 mile trek (1,400 miles round trip) to Jackson, Mississippi only to have an ice storm, stuck in our hotel room, and not run a race!
On the return trip home, one of my running partners shared a Facebook Post from the Charleston Marathon Race Director, in which they were offering a discounted rate for those that had their races cancelled (Mississippi Blues Half Marathon & Walt Disney World Half Marathon). Since I was frustrated for not only not getting my race completed for another state, but also for not getting in my mileage, I decided to sign up for the Charleston Half Marathon.
I am glad I did. Since it was a local race, I got to run with a lot of my friends that run; however, don’t get to see on a regular basis. At the start I got to see the Cavalliers. Grace was running her first half marathon and knocked it out the park. I got to see Jim Madden who was doing his first marathon in a long time, and smoked it at a 3:25!
The race started near the Charleston Riverdogs Stadium in downtown Charleston. The first 8 miles were in downtown Charleston where I work and most often do my training runs. So I was well versed in the route. I knocked them out at a pretty good clip, maintaining an 8:15 to 8:20 pace throughout.
We saw our Wednesday run’s Fearless leader in Dave Bundy at mile 1 as his daughter’s musical group performed for us. About miles 2-3 we ran down “The Battery”, which is always awesome, training run or race.
Finally, I got to see Emily M. along King Street. They were going nuts cheering us on, and it was very welcomed and much appreciated! At the end I was able to meet up with Becky (my Disney running partner) and Amy (The Tiny Terror). Both Renee & Amy PR’ed in the half marathon, and Becky actually placed tops in her age group in the 5k.
Then the scenery went bleak and with that the cheering fans. Once we got to about miles 7 to 11 there wasn’t much to see. It is a long stretch along train tracks and areas far less scenic. At about Mile 11 we enter into Waterfront Park in North Charleston. This is on the old Navy Base and is a beautiful park. It was a nice change of scenery along the Cooper River. We then wind through some newer renovated areas of North Charleston and on to the finish near Park Circle.
From about mile 9 to the finish my times dropped off a little as it started to get a little warmer. I ended up finishing the race with a 1:57:18, which was my best half since last May in Minnesota.
I felt really good in the race and was really excited for my time. It was Mississippi or a chance to color in another state for my 50 By 50 Challenge; however, it was far better than just doing a training run for 13.1 miles. With this one I got a medal for my 33rd half marathon.
It was a great weekend for a race. It was great to run with friends.
The only downside of this race was at the end when we went to get on the shuttle to get transported back to the start. The only exit was blocked by a stopped train for 15 minutes. Obviously, the race directors did not relay to CSX that there was a race with lots of people was going on. Sitting after a race for that long got me really stiff in the legs.
So that is half marathon #33 in the books.
Up next, in just six weeks, will be my next attempt to mark another state off for my 50 By 50 Challenge. I will do a quick weekend jaunt to Little Rock, Arkansas to run the Little Rock Half Marathon for state number 18!