Sunday, March 3, 2013

E Murray Todd Half Marathon

Two weeks ago, I checked the weather for this morning's Half Marathon, and it said low 50s. NICE!
Last week I checked the weather and it said low 40s. Not great but do-able.
This morning it was 30*. Seriously. Let's throw in the wind chill, and it was probably 20s. It.Was.Cold.

I met my friend Eileen in the parking lot at about 7:20 and we picked up our bibs and long sleeve shirts.   Luckily, registration was indoors at Brookdale Community College's Athletic Building! We did some laps on their indoor track and stopped for a potty break. Just before it was time to line up, I ran into some friends and we stopped for photo ops!

First, with Sherri, who I met through this blog! So great to meet a fellow Half Maniac at such a small race!
Then, I got my photo with my friend Eileen, who I have run a bunch of races with, and will be running more with this year! LOVE her, she has definitely pushed me to run better races!
Lisa is a fellow Half Fanatic, and Jersey Girl! We met through FaceBook and have met up at a few races, and will luckily be meeting up at even more this year! She is also a Half Fanatic, what an awesome bunch we are!

After the happy photo ops (there will be *no more* of those!) we lined up for the race. It was chip times, but only at the finish, it was a gun start with no starting mats. I started my watch at what felt like the start, and we were off. No worries tho, after the photos, I put on a running cap and gloves. Good thing, it was soooo cold!
The first few miles were very nice, rolling hills, but the wind was brutal. And then the steep hills started! They also didn't rope off the roads, so we were running on some very small or non existent shoulders with cars zooming by. Eek!
I stopped at mile 5 and walked while eating my Honey Stinger Waffle, and was dismayed to find that the mile 6 water stop was closed because they ran out of cups. Really? Now I am thirsty, the hills are INSANE and the next water stop isn't until Mile 8.
Many steep hills later, and one really bad step that left me with a sore knee for the rest of the race, brought us to the mile 8 water stop where I finally got my water! Whew! After the that, the hills were more rolly, and we were in farm country. Beautiful farm country. LOVED it. My friend Lisa caught up with us at this point (she was always right nearby, she was run/walking so she would pass us, we would pass her, and on...and and stayed with us for the last miles.
After farm country we entered Thompson park, and some windy roads. There was a nice water stop there, and also Dave from the JSRC playing his trumpet. I *love* Dave and his trumpet! Races without him just are not the same!
After the Park, which we mostly walked through, since Eileen and I were nursing sore knees, we approached the College again. It was such a relief to see the finish line ahead! The three of us staggered over the finish line one after the other and headed over to the "food" table. We got bottled water, and they had oranges and bananas. I really wanted actual food, so I didn't take either. They also had jars of European "Peanut" Butter to try, so I took one. I haven't tried it yet though, lol.
As bummed as I was with my finish time (around 2:50-2:55) I am also thrilled overall with my finish. It was a crazyhard race. The hills were nuts, the wind and cold was insane, and I was wrecked by the end. I had a lot of fun running with Eileen and Lisa.
My whole body aches, especially my butt muscles lol. My head hurts, even after an Excedrin for Migraines, and even after a hot shower, I was still cold an hour later!
Things I was disappointed in? The lack of water at mile 5, the lack of food at the finish, and the lack of bling. Also, the fact that the roads weren't closed and many roads had no shoulder. It was a $30 registration though, so I wasn't expecting much, but after Disney I am a little spoiled!
Things I loved? Dave and his trumpet, the presence of Police and Park Rangers on the course, and the course was pretty well marked.
Will I run it next year? Maybe not, I haven't decided yet. I loved being able to run a Half so early, so maybe so, lol.
13in2013 Race #2 DONE!!!!

Have you ever had a bad race experience?


  1. oooooooooooooohhhh cookie butter....BEST.THING.EVER

  2. Oh and I have had many a bad race experience but I will say I wish I had a friend there with me during them.....when you are not alone it can't be that bad :)

    1. It was so nice to have a friend for the whole race, and 2 friends for the last 4 miles. Definitely helped!

  3. Nice job on such a hard day!!! I ran the race too and was miserable in the cold and hills. The biscoff is delicious, you are going to love it :)

  4. Great meeting you yesterday. Sorry to hear that you had a bad experience.When all is said and done, you tackled all of the obstacles that were placed in front of you and finished.For that, you should celebrate.

    1. Thanks! I started feeling a bad cold coming on last night, and feel worse today so that probably contributed to some of the ugly I was feeling! It was so good to see you yesterday, I hope we end up at another race together soon!

  5. stumbled across this blog w/help of a friend's alert.... embarrassingly-loving the trumpet & Dave comments :)
    I'm very glad to know I was a positive part of your (and other runners) race experience - all the more worthwhile for me to get my butt out there !
    I got to the park early enough to get in my own 9 mile run before playing... believe it or not, I even raced E Murray Todd in 2012 !

    - Dave DeMonico :)

    1. OMG I am loving that you posted! LOVE seeing you out there, and super impressed that you ran 9 first it was *so* cold that day! Next race I see you at, I will have to get a pic with you. I am pretty positive that this was NOT the first time I mentioned you here! Everyone loves seeing you at races, I have even read another blog where you were mentioned :) You are famous :)

    2. Have thought a few times about running the race again, until getting injured the past year or so.... then again, my one time racing on that hilly course was enough for me - it beat the hell out of my legs, that year ! Then again, I entered it at the last minute, hadn't done any hard runs longer than 9 miles that winter & wore old racing flats, because I didn't want to mess up my new ones on a rainy day - NOT a smart way to race !
      Yup - stop for a pic, next time ! I often get that at races - too funny, when it happens !
      Famous - or, infamous ? :)
      What racing is next for you ?

  6. Infamous maybe? lol nooo definitely famous! I am doing Atlantic City April Fools and Runapalooza in April :)

  7. I've been playing at Runapalooza for several years, now - start playing at about 8:37- 8:45 in either Bradley Beach for two years or Avon, the past two years - as the half marathon headed out past me... and for those who chose the 3 loop course, that meant playing for 6 passings !
    And then later in the day, the 5th leg of all the relay teams from Seaside start passing me... and I end up playing my last notes between 1:00pm and 1:30pm - a LONG day of playing with beat-to-hell lips that usually take most of the week to heal up !
    I ran for a team (MacGowan Agency) I think 5-6 years at the Relay, before the playing years....
    Different races & courses, this year... I think I'l be setting up around Asbury/Loch Arbour bridge or thereabouts - Bob Both (race director) told me I'd be able to be at about the mile mark & 4 mile mark for the 5 miler & also cover the other racers..

  8. I know this post is from a few years ago, but did you ever run the race again? If so was it a better experience? I am thinking of running this race. I normally run the NJ half in Long Branch.

    1. I have run it every year since, actually. It's freezing and hilly and very low key. There is a medal now and the shirt is comfy. I won't be running it in 2016, but only because I'm moving