fitness · Uncategorized

Santa Hustle Half Marathon Recap

I hope you all had a spectacular weekend – it was quite the winter wonderland here!

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I had to brush two inches of snow off of my car before teaching my Saturday Zumba class and the snow just kept coming down!  I actually really enjoy big snow storms (when I don’t have to travel) and finally convinced Tim that playing in the snow needed to happen.  I think we ended up with 6-8 inches of the fluffy white stuff and it is beautiful outside.  Snow is a magical thing!

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Sorry for the crappy quality phone pic 🙂

The snow was really stressing me out on Saturday because I was supposed to make an hour drive to pick up our packets for the Santa Hustle Half Marathon (there was no race day pick up).  Most of the area was under a snow emergency, so after a few emails to the race team we arranged for our packets to be held at the on-site store the morning of the race.  I was impressed by the speed of service and how helpful they were in making sure we received our packets!

My sister, her fiance, and I left in the wee hours of the morning to make it to Sandusky for the run.  Luckily for us, the highways were completely clear and we made it safely.  We picked up our packets and within a few moments were ready to run!

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Our packet included a festive long-sleeve tech tee, a beard, and a Santa hat!  We were going to wear the beards to keep our faces warm but found we kept breathing in the fuzz – that quickly made us change our minds.  They were fun to wear and I know we will put them to good use in the near future 🙂  I made my sister and myself the tutus and wore my PROCompression holiday socks for some added holiday spirit!

The race had a later start at 9am and the start was well organized and they sent us off in waves.  We took off in the third wave and had little trouble with crowding.  We took a turn and started heading out to Cedar Point, where most of our miles would be racked up.

The most challenging parts of the race were the snow-covered roads and the wind that decided to attack us on our way back.  It started snowing when we started the race, which just added to my holiday excitement!

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We got in an extra-good half marathon workout – it felt like we were running in sand for the whole race!

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“Santa would be proud!”

Overall, we didn’t do bad!  Considering the conditions and the fact that none of us really trained for the event, we did great!  It was my slowest half marathon time ever at 2:20:54, but I really don’t care.  I was just happy to not walk and to finish strong.  The best part of finishing was getting to cross the finish line with my sister (her second half) and her fiance (his first!) and seeing my fiance’s smiling face as he cheered us on!

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The race course had several water/gatorade stops and a few candy/cookie stops.  I nabbed water several times and a ‘shot’ of MnMs around mile 9.  I wasn’t able to get many down, but it lifted my spirits to taste the sugar!  My IT band was sore for the second half of the race, my sister wasn’t really feelin’ the elements (but she champed through it!), and for every step forward miles 10-12 we were being pushed two steps back by the wind.  That wasn’t exactly great, but my mantras for the race were:

-You signed up for this.
-A half marathon isn’t supposed to be easy.
-There are people in your life who aren’t able to do what you’re doing.  Stay POSITIVE for them.
-Running in the snow is just making you stronger.
-You’re responsible for how you want to tackle this.  You can be negative and feel poorly, or you can slap a smile on your face and be happy about it.  (For the record, I chose the latter even though there were times I would have rather gone the first route).

Overall, the race was good!  The volunteers at the finish were super smiley (always a bonus in my book!), the start was incredibly smooth (which isn’t always the case even in huge races), and the race team did the best they could to help us have a positive experience.   The only thing I wish I would’ve known is that the roads weren’t going to be well-plowed.

I’m very glad we decided to brave the elements and just do it – you never regret a run 🙂  It was a great last race of 2013!!!

Have a great Monday!  

What do you do to stay motivated during a tough run or race?  Do you have any mantras you find yourself saying over and over?  

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2 thoughts on “Santa Hustle Half Marathon Recap

  1. That race sounds awesome, congrats on finishing a Half in those conditions! And I love your race mantras! I also ran a super slippery and snowy run yesterday (details are in my blog post) and I knew about halfway through it that I was using way more muscles than usual just because I was so focused on staying upright! You’re right, it did feel like running through sand. I loved running in the snow though, it’s so beautiful!

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