October 26, 2013
This event takes place in Muncie, IN which is approximately 1 1/2 hours northeast of Indianapolis. Muncie is home to Ball State University. That is where my husband graduated from and also where David Letterman (yes, the late night talk show host) graduated from.
I participated last year and I signed up for the 2013 race at the end of 2012 before the fee went up so it was only $40. This is a very small race (127 half marathon participants this year; 61 females and 65 males. Quick math says that doesn’t total 127 but that’s what the website says) and they also offer a 10K & a 5K. I think there is also a 1 mile family or kids walk/run.
Last year I stayed in Muncie the night before but in an effort to save some money, I decided not to do that this time. However, I did drive up on Friday for packet pick-up because the start location for the race had changed and I wasn’t sure where I needed to go and wanted to have a better feel for it rather than searching race morning.
Packet pickup took place at The Arsenal in downtown Muncie. It was only from 5:00pm – 7:00pm which was going to put me in a pinch with getting back home on time. They looked like they were set up at 4:45 so I went in. Oh my gosh…that was an awful place to have packet pickup because they were having a CrossFit class going on at the same time. It was so obnoxiously loud and you could barely hear the person you were talking to even though they were right in front of you. They weren’t technically ready – they didn’t have the bib assignment list with them – but they called and I was able to get the correct bib. Then they tried to give me verbal directions to where the start line would be. It wasn’t helping. Then…OnStar was out of commission and wouldn’t load so I tried MapQuest on my iPad. The bad thing was that I didn’t have the actual address of this Tuhey Pool place. It was sheer luck that I eventually found it. So glad I did this investigating the night before instead of stressing about it race morning.
The alarm was set for 5:00AM Saturday morning but I allowed myself an extra 30 minutes and didn’t actual get up until 5:30AM. I made it a little further than the usual 10 minutes from my house before I had to stop for a restroom break. Obviously traffic at 7:00AM on a Saturday isn’t very heavy so I made pretty good time. The sunrise was beautiful on my drive up to Muncie.
However, I made it up there a little later than I’d hoped however. Not sure if it was because of the potty stop or what. Luckily I found a place to park only a block away. I still had to get my ankle timing chip and make one last visit to the porta-potty. They had three of them but the line was looooong. I was still standing there during the invocation and the National Anthem.
I was going to be a cold and windy run today. Don’t I look cold in this pre-race photo! After the girl took the picture for me I put my jacket back on.
Since I ran this last year, I decided to put my phone away although I wish I ‘d taken some pictures last year so I was pretty sure I’d want to take them this year. I was just going to wait to see how my race was going.
The race was to begin at 9:00AM. There was no timing mat to actually start your race time. It was a gun start. And by gun start, I mean a cannon. That thing was loud. And even though we knew it would be a cannon we all were startled when it went off. Because of this I wasn’t sure when to start my watch. Once we left this side road, the race followed the same course as last year. We ran past some of the fraternity house on the Ball State University campus. Shockingly, none of those young men were up early to cheer us on. Sadly I can’t find turn-by-turn directions but after the first 2 miles we were running on paved trails. I think one of them was called the Cardinal Expressway. With all of the fall colors on the tress this area was very pretty to run in.
Some “action” photos turn out better than others!
The wind wasn’t too bad until we would come to a clearing in the tree row and then it would cut across you. I had a couple of girls that I was chasing for most of the race and I finally passed them for the last time around mile 10. However there was the girl in the plaid running hat that I did the back & forth dance the entire last half of the race. Sadly I must report that in the final chase she passed me. Well, played Plaid.
According to my watch, I barely recorded another PR but I was going to wait until the results were posted to make sure. So I went and got some of the food the were handing out (grapes, water, vanilla crème sandwich cookies – which were DELIGHTFUL!) and went to my car and sat in there for awhile. Plus I had brought my own chocolate milk and wanted to drink that. Eventually I meandered back to the finish line area and they were just posting the latest results. Yep, I got a new PR by 0:00:22 seconds! And I placed 3 in my age group so I hung around to get my prize.
The second place finisher didn’t stick around.
So after I got my award, I got in my car and drove back home. I didn’t have much time to waste since I had a 5K later in the evening.
But before departing Muncie, I stopped and took a picture of a street sign that I noticed on the drive in. Cornbread Road – the perfect name for a street next to a cornfield out in the country.