April 12, 2014
Sheesh, I should have blogged about this WEEKS AGO but am just now getting around to doing so. #bloggerfail.
This was the 4th annual race but the first time I’ve ever done it even though it is not that far from where I live; maybe 30-45 minutes away. They also offer a Marathon, Marathon Relay and an 8K. I should probably start tracking how much races cost up front but I paid $52.63 including taxes and fees and with my Half Fanatics discount. It was probably around $60 and I definitely registered before the price increased.
The expo is held the night before - there is no race day packet pickup – and takes place up at the Monon Center in the city of Carmel, IN. I don’t make it up to Carmel very often but it is known to be a “wealthier” city, has an Arts & Design district and the Center for Performing Arts. You can read more about the city HERE.
The Expo was pretty good size with merchandise and other vendors. Getting my packet was super easy and we made a quick loop around checking out all the booths. My husband and I saw a guy from our Hendricks County Runners Club and while talking to him, I signed up for the Indianapolis Women’s Only Half and saved $10 so I got in for only $40. SCORE! Another walk around to make sure I didn’t miss anything and we noticed that our podiatrist was speaking so we sat & listened to his presentation. All total we were probably in and out in 45 minutes.
We then headed to a pre-race party that my friend A.L. invited me to that was for Half Fanatics and Marathon Maniacs. And one of the guys there (JD) was celebrating that tomorrow’s half would be his 200th! WOW – that blows my getting to 50 in a couple of races completely out of the water. The house that this party was held in was gorgeous and the lady & her husband paid for all the food & drink. We didn’t stay too long but since we were in the area, we thought we’d take a chance and drive up to our friends G & M’s house because we haven’t seen them in FOREVER. Luckily they were home and it was just like old times, sharing stories and laughing. We stayed a lot longer than we thought we would AND THEN…I realized that I’d left my purse and the other party. UGH! Luckily it was on the way home, they were still up and had been keeping an eye on it for me. All the while they were wondering how on earth were they going to find me to get it to me because only A.L. & JD would have known how to get me and that would have been through Facebook. But both of them were long gone from the party. All's well that ends well.
Race morning came way too quickly after that long night. I wanted to leave the house early enough to get there for the group photo(Marathon Maniacs & Half Fanatics) but 45 minutes wasn’t enough time and I missed it. Not being completely sure of where I was going to park was a factor as well but I got lucky and followed some other vehicles with 13.1 & 26.2 stickers on them and got a great place really close to the start finish line.
Sat in the car for awhile gathering stuff and adjusting my iPod shuffle and then headed to the porta-potties. The temps were cool; right on the edge of needing a throw away but I didn’t have one.
There were plenty of porta-potties and I got lucky getting in the one on the very far end which had the shortest line. You get to hear some pretty funny conversations while waiting in these lines. At one point some geese passed overhead and someone said, “They had to make some cuts this year so there’s your fly-over.” FUNNY.
Took a few pre-race photos and then just waited on the start.
The race starts by the Center for the Performing Arts and runs east on 126th street for about the first 2 miles and then dips into a neighborhood for the next mile. The were a few people out from their houses to cheer us on and one lady sitting in a lawn chair banging on a pot with a wooden spoon. That made me chuckle. It reminded me of something my mom would do to ring in the new year! Back out on 126th street for about a half a mile and then the half marathoners turnaround and go back west while the marathoners continue on east. On my way back west, I got to see my friends A.L. (she was doing the full) and JD who was also running the half.
Yep, that’s the guy leading the marathon passing us mid-to-back of the packers just after mile 6.
Between miles 7 & 8, we head into the Hagan-Burke Trail. It’s a nice paced running route that was also somewhat tree-lined.
I actually saw these people out on the course earlier but didn’t get a picture so I was glad I saw them again. God bless people who dress up to come out and cheer on runners.
One other thing that I saw while on this path was probably the sweatiest person EVER. And it looked like he was wearing a cotton T-shirt which was drenched! You could see the sweat running down his legs. I felt sorry for him. Made me feel better about thinking that I sweat a lot. I was going to take a photo of him but thought it best not to.
I saw another girl that I know from the Hendricks County Runners Club near mile 11. She was helping direct the half marathon runners to the left and the full marathon runners were to continue straight ahead.
From about mile 11 to the end, I had become mentally disengaged. Near mile 12 when we were back in what I would call “downtown” Carmel, there were some more interesting things to look at but I didn’t take any photos. I thought that if I really wanted them I could just drive back up here in the next couple of day. Yeah, that didn’t happen.
I was thankful when I crossed that finish line. Got my medal and an ice cold chocolate milk but wasn’t interested in any of the pizza. Grabbed a few of the other snacks and then walked to my car.
I’m not sure why I was expecting more from this race visually. Maybe because Carmel touts themselves as being all that and a bag of chips. However, the medal is really good.
Not sure if I’ll do this one again next year since I’ll be focusing on less races but more that are out in states that I haven't done yet.
Side note: I did learn later that some of the full marathon runners were “treated” to a flasher on his porch on the last half of their course. Hmmm…probably not sorry to have missed that.