I can’t believe I kept this race for a secret for as long as I did! I registered for it in March thinking that it would be a good training run since I already had 24 miles on my schedule for the day. Matt agreed that it was a good idea so I went for it. About two weeks ago when I was going through my whole mental breakdown I emailed the race director asking if I could downgrade to the half marathon. Then I met with Matt the Wednesday before the race and he told me it would be better for me to run the full AND not run the half. I told him I had already bugged the race director into letting me run the half and I felt bad for switching my race again. Matt said I should just try and ask him if I could run the full. What was the worse he could say? No? Wednesday night I emailed the poor race director again and thankfully he let me back into the marathon.
Ian: If you are reading this…THANK YOU!
The entire weekend was a complete whirlwind. I left Spokane at 4:15 pm and drove to Wenatchee. I arrived a little before 7 pm and easily located the conference center where the bib pick up was at. Ate a random, but yummy, dinner of sweet potato fries and coconut shrimp while waiting for Becky to arrive. I was really excited to get an opportunity to hang out with Becky since I had missed out #NuunKOTB in July.
After dinner we chatted as we got ready (made my Nuun Kona Cola and put on my Nuun tattoos) and then hit the lights good night. As I fell asleep I couldn’t believe that I would be running marathon #5 in the morning. YIKES!
Woke up around 6:45 on race morning and ate my stale Starbucks coffee cake while I got ready. We left the hotel about 7:30 and found front row parking by the starting line (love small races!). I think that Becky was concerned for my well being before the start because I didn’t seem excited to be running. I really was excited, I freaking love running, but I tend to shut down on race day and just be in the zone. Sorry to freak you out Becky! Even though it was just a training run, it was still a freaking marathon. 26.2 miles is a long time to be on your feet!
I LOVE Running!!!!!
I ran with my heart in Boston. Normally I would have worn my Brooks arm warmers, but I couldn't not wear my arm warmers I purchased in Boston.
Love my Brooks Pure Flows
Becky and I before she started the half marathon
I was a little worried about how they were starting the race, but once it started it actually made sense. The half marathoners started at 8:00 am and the marathoners and 10K’ers started at 8:15. It REALLY messes with your head when you start a marathon with 10K’ers! I had my eyes glued to my garmin to make sure I wasn’t running too fast. I kept having to tell myself to slooooooow down. I could have raced, but that wasn't the point. This was only a training run and mostly I needed to know that mentally I could run 26.2.
The plan was to run the first half with an average pace of 8:30 and then slowly pick up the pace for miles 13-22. At mile 22 I could decide if I wanted to run/walk/jog/or crawl the next 4.2 miles.
The course started out with an out back that was 6.2 miles. Once we crossed the finish line we had two full loops of the marathon course to run. I have never run a marathon course that didn’t consist of a point to point race, but I actually liked the loops. I knew what I was getting myself into the second time around.
The course was BEAUTIFUL, I really enjoyed running it. My watch went on the fritz, but I at least know what my average pace was. I hit mile 22 and decided to walk & run the remaining 4.2 miles. There was no way I was going to walk the whole thing! I started to actually pass people so that got me excited! Becky was so sweet and ran the last mile with me. She was really encouraging- I hope that she didn’t think I was whining too much. My feet were hurting pretty bad. I ended up with multiple blisters.
As soon as I crossed the finish line I had to get ready to drive to Portland and make it in time to surprise my BFF at her “dirty 30” surprise birthday party. Portland is about a 5 hour drive from Wenatchee so I knew that I would be cutting it close. I quickly grabbed a rice krispie treat, threw on some warm clothes and then dropped Becky back off at the hotel and hit the road!
Becky and I after the race
Ended up 2nd in my AG, and 10th place female OA...not too shabby for a training run!
Official time was 3:52:XX
Marathon #5 is a wrap AND I made it to my BFF's surprise party just in time to really surprise her!
I did a lot of driving over the weekend...close to 900 miles! Every mile was worth it.
What I loved about Wenatchee:
Course was well marked
Plenty of food at the finish line
You could do race day bib pick up if you were coming from out of town
Easy and accessible race day parking
Race photo downloads were included in your entry fee (Um, hello other race directors...did you read that?!)
My dislikes about Wenatchee:
They need to do a better job updating their website
I wished that they would mail the AG awards to the winners. Even if we paid for the shipping that would have been nice. I couldn't stay for the awards (didn't even know I had placed until that afternoon) because I had to be in Portland by 5pm.
As you can see my dislikes were minor. I absolutely loved this race and would run it again, but probably just the half marathon. The marathon course is certified so you if you train for the race it would be an excellent BQ course. The same organization puts on the the Leavenworth marathon and half marathon in October. Makes me very tempted to run that race too!
PS- THANK YOU BECKY for letting me stay with you!!!!!!!