Baltimore Half Marathon Recap
Baltimore is not far from DC. But after dropping off a friend last year, we knew that getting a hotel room would be a smart choice. At the 2012 Baltimore Running Festival we left DC at 5:45am and still did not get there in time to drop a friend off at the start. She had to run an additional mile to get to the marathon start and only just made it into the start as the gun went off.
So using my Priceline Negotiator skills I scored a hotel in the inner harbor for a steal. Turns out it was the Hyatt Regency on Light Street, which is directly across the street from where the half corrals line up! So perfection!
We didn’t get to the expo at the convention center until 7pm on Friday. It wasn’t too crowded, but it was started to die down. We grabbed out bibs and gorgeous highlighter green Under Armour Long Sleeve Tech Tees. Michael wanted a fun Baltimore themed shirt to run in like Christine and I had… So he picked up an “I steamed the Crab” shirt (which is wears all the time now…)
After the expo we headed to noodles across from our hotel. This is wear Christine realized they handed her the wrong race shirt size and she ran back to the expo to straighten it out. At this point we were all exhausted. Traffic getting into Baltimore was a mess and a trip that should have only taken a little over an hour, took almost 3. So we settled in a the Hyatt and called it a night.
The half marathon started at 9:45am, so we didn’t get up till 8:30am. For a half marathon… that’s awesome. I am terrible at pre-race fueling. I’m either nauseous or dizzy. So for this race I tried some of the Powerade chomps/chews… eh something like that. And i nibbled on a whole wheat mini bagel which is the photo below it appears I’ve decided to wear as a ring.
So after the race began, Michael went on his merry way and Christine I are started. We bumped into our sorority sister Sabrina with her husband Michael at the start and ran for about 5 minutes with them before we lost them in the crowd. Since, I was sick (I would find out 2 days later that I had a sinus & upper respiratory infection) we decided to take it easy. We also discovered that Sabrina had bronchitis, so after they left we had a feeling we may bump into them at some point.
The atmosphere was electric. The half begins around the same time the marathon is hitting the half way mark. It’s extremely motivation knowing that the person next to you has run 15 miles and you’ve run 2! There is plenty of water, sports drink and a buffet around the lake. (yeah we’ll get to that)
There are a lot of hills during this race. So Christine and I came up with the plan early on to walk up and run down. Great Plan. At one point we actually shouted, “I love gravity” while running down a hill. Who cares if fellow runners look at you like you’ve escaped an asylum? Spectators were so friendly during the race. Since Christine and I coordinated our purple outfits, people assumed we were team Ravens. In Baltimore, that’s plus. We even had a little girl run with us for 2 blocks and tell her parents she was now part of team Raven. Christine did most of the talking. I’m terrified of stranger’s children… what do you say to them?
My other race buddy Justine, came out to support us during this race and supplied much need emotional and Advil support. She stayed with us in the hotel the evening before and we saw her at the beginning of the race. But my favorite is when she showed up in the middle of who knows where, inner city Baltimore, with her new friend Mondo. No really, to give us Advil & Nuun. Thank you!! Thank you!! Also I’m so happy Mondo didn’t chop you into little pieces and hide you in an alley.
We eventually ran back into Sabrina around mile 5ish. Turns out she was also walking up the hills and running down. At this point though we were being pretty liberal with what you’d consider uphill. We jogged and walked till we hit the lake with a buffet around mile 7.
Christine is a hungry runner, she fuels liberally. At mile 3 she was already hungry. Much to our surprise there was a full spread at the far end of the lake. There were potato chips, bananas, GU, and Power bars. I grabbed a potato chip, thinking the salt would help and immediately regretted my decision so I gave it to some spectators who were eyeing the food. They seemed happy about it. Time for my Espresso Love GU!! YUM!
Later that afternoon, I mentioned the lake was my the favorite part of the race. Christine remembered snacks and had no idea we even ran around a lake.
The rest of the race continued to be hilly and there was a misty rain. It made the weather just perfect. We ran until about Mile 11 with Sabrina and her husband then we lost each other again.
We kept a consistent light jog for the last 1.5 miles and just really tried to enjoy the crowd. Christine and I crossed the finish line 3:08:10. There is not group race photo because I literally ran out of my pants. The leg was ripping, so I had to run to the merchandise tent and grab pants before our post race brunch with my in-laws, the girls, hubby, and brother-in-law with his fiance!
But I did take this before I realized there was a pants problem!