Friday, April 22, 2016

Come See Me Half Marathon Recap

Last weekend I was supposed to run the Runapalooza Half Marathon with my Jersey runner besties. Because I have been traveling so much, and will be traveling more in the weeks to come, I decided to run locally instead. I chose to run the Come See Me Half in Rock Hill, just a few towns over and part of a large week long festival they have every year.
The packet pick up was the night before at their local YMCA. I had to do some pretty serious research to find that out. There were no emails prior to the race and there was no info on the race page. I posted at my local MRTT page and was told the info could be found at the website of the timing company. Ummmmm ok.....

Anyway, it was a very nice facility and a pretty decent drive, and while I  was there I even hit up a few Little Free Libraries. They were mostly at Elementary schools, so I got rid of about 20 books, but only ended up taking 2. 

The actual packet pick up was very organized and the swag wasn't too shabby, so I was optimistic about race day!

On race morning I got up way too early and made the drive to Rock Hill. The start was at a high school and we got to use real bathrooms at the football field. Score!
It was about 5 minutes to race time when I realized we had to walk over to the tennis courts to start. I must have missed the announcement! I rushed over and there were about 100 people ready to start. I tried to power up my Garmin, but it wouldn't start. I didn't have time to bring it back to the car, so I just left it on my wrist. Dead. Sad. 
I hate running naked. Ugh!
The race started 7 minutes late because they were timing the start with the train schedule so we would not get stuck at the tracks. 
And then we were off. This race was hilly! And speedy! I ended up being last for the first 10 miles people. For real. Check out the top right photo in the collage. Those guys were my besties and they were breathing down my neck for ten.long.miles.
So let's talk about those miles. They had signs at almost every other mile. Mile 2, mile 6, mile 8, and mile 12 had signs. Mile 4 had a timing clock. Mile 10? Nada.
The water stops were every 2 miles and there was a volunteer at every odd mile. They sort of clapped and gave a half hearted "you can do it". It was disheartening to say the least. The police officers at the turns were very nice and all very enthusiastic. 
The cows, horses, and goats were a nice change of scenery from what I'm used to. The farm smell? I'll get used to it eventually! It's not unpleasant but it's not the ocean either!
My goal entering this race was to beat last week's time at Raleigh. Under 3 hours would have been ideal. I couldn't find any time limit listed so I was hoping that I would finish in time.
At every second Mile I would check my fit bit to see if I was on pace for that 3 hour finish, and it seemed as though I was doing well. There were a lot of curves and for much of the race I felt very alone. Every once in awhile the road would straighten out and I could see that there were 4 people that were not too far ahead of me.
I had a mission.
Catch up with those 4.
Beat those 4.
Last would have been fine with me, but that mission kept me going.
For ten miles.
At around mile 8, I started to catch up with the man. We leap frogged for about a mile or so, and then I started to pull ahead for longer stretches. By roughly mile 10, I was ahead of him and catching up with a very tall woman. We chatted a bit. She was very funny. It made the time go by a bit easier. I noticed at about this time that the two girls I had been leap frogging with were gone. 
By mile 12 I was alone again, with 4 runners behind me. As I approached the football field, a cyclist started waving me on and riding ahead of me, my very own escort. No chance I would walk now. He kept me going right up to the track and my final lap. 
I was very happy to see the finish.
Very happy to see the clock still started with 2.
Very happy to receive my medal.
Very sad to see that all they had at the finish was small cups and a water cooler. 
No food.
And they were taking down the tent. 
Four people still behind me.
I went to my car and got my clothes to change.
I was starving and thirsty and glad that I had a power bar and some iced tea in the car. 
Luckily, some volunteers who used to live in NY stopped me to comment on my Giants cap.
When I mentioned lack of food, they pointed out a small table hidden in a corner behind a truck. When I went over, the volunteers offered me a stale piece of everything bagel. They kept all the other food closed up,and I was too tired and annoyed to ask for some mini muffins. I did ask for a bottled water though which I was grudgingly given.
The four behind me left with nothing.
I paid $65 for this race. Not much compared to some, but I have paid way less and gotten far more in the past. Needless to say, I will not run this race next year.
That race I blew off? I paid less for it, and they have an expo at the finish. Tons of food, drinks and finisher photos as well as some course photos. 
Just sayin.
But hey! It was my fastest time in a year, so there's that little ray of sunshine for my day!


  1. Nice job on a speedy race, but that really sucks about the finish. I hate when the BOOPs (back of the packers) don't get any fanfare, water, or snacks after the race. It's not fair; they paid the same amount and deserve the same treatment as the early finishers!

  2. Wow, that doesn't sound like a fun race! But good job getting a sub 3 time!