Seaside Heights Half Marathon Recap
This race holds a special place in my heart for 2 reasons. The first being I grew up in this area of the Jersey Shore and the second this would be the race where I qualified for the Half Fanatics!! I was able to stay with family for this race and we made a weekend out of it.
Unfortunately, larger races have spoiled me. And I need my water, sports drink, and GU. In a nut shell, it was not a good day. It was the worst race I have ever run.
So let’s get right to it. This will be short. I have run enough races this year, to assume there would be frequent water stops. Wrong. At the beginning of the race it was windy and maybe 40 degrees. We picked up our bibs in the morning at Beachcomber on the water. If you didn’t know earlier that month Funtown Pier experienced a devastating fire, burning down where the race starts would have been, packet pick up, and the Sawmill. This was even more upsetting due to the fact that the area was finally recovering from Super Storm Sandy. It was a heartbreaking scene. Therefore I will not be too harsh. They did the best they could with the situation and resources.
During packet pick up with discovered that we had a 3 hour time limit. no pressure. I also was trying out new compression pants, that I thought I could wear when I ran a marathon the following month. Yes. I did that. I broke the number one rule of racing. Never try out something new on race day. Well these supposedly amazing pants were way too big. I wound up having to pull my pants up every hundred feet or so. It was wildly uncomfortable and painful in the end.
The first 1.5 miles are on the Boardwalk and the last 1.5 miles are on the Boardwalk. These miles were great. It was the rest that sucked. We ran on a road out for 4ish miles and back for 4ish miles. It was a road with trees. Nothing else. The 40 degree weather quickly turned to 65 degrees in direct sunlight.
I also learned during this race, that I don’t function without sports drink. Apparently, I lose salt very quickly. On this particular, day my hat and face were covered in salt crystals.There were maybe 4 water stops and they were giving out baby cups. Teeny tiny water cups. There was one sports drink stop at mile 6.5. (Much needed). Thinking that there would be more stops or sports drink, I didn’t wear my belt. Huge mistake.
Sadly, I don’t remember much of the end. Christine ran most of it next to me. worried I may fall over. She was right, it was stupid but, I was moments from passing out. I’m pretty sure I was hallucinating at points. I almost DNF’ed twice and looking back I should have. It was risky and reckless to keep going. We finally made it to the end. We were both having a terrible time and felt just awful.
We finally crossed the finish line at 2:59. My husband was so proud (and worried from my incoherent texts). But thankfully he finished first. I promptly crossed the finish line walked 20 steps to the left and fainted in the parking lot. I allegedly looked at him and said, “I’m going down,” which gave him enough time to catch my head.
Afterward, I sat for a while and re-hydrated because I refused to let an EMT come near me. I was feeling well enough to get out of there in about 20 min. So we headed out to get some good ole fashion Jersey Pizza at Pete & Elda’s. If you’ve never heard of it, do yourself a favor and go. Right Now. It’s amazing!
But this race taught me a few important lessons.
- Always test out gear before the race
- Check finish times
- Hydrate properly by bringing what I know I need
- & Don’t just make assumptions about race support
But we came, we saw, and we conquered! I’m now half fanatic #5176 and by hubby is #5177.
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