Thursday, February 23, 2012

ING Miami Half Marathon Recap

I ran the ING Miami Half Marathon on Saturday January 29th.
I woke up that morning feeling terrible, and in fact, I vomited before leaving my house that morning.  I had been sick for a couple of weeks so I think my body was just tired of the yuckiness.
So that was a great start.
I really wanted to get back in bed and forget about the half.
But then I remembered I was running those 13.1 miles for Gabby.
I figured if a little girl could tough it out through chemo, pills and everything else she has had to deal with this year, I could stand to do something for 3 hours.

In the end, I was really glad I at least completed the course.  I didn't feel great and it was not easy, but I got it done.
I do love this course and think this is one amazing race!
It has grown quickly over the past few years, and for good reason. 
It is a SCENIC, FAST, FLAT course.  Last year I had a 10 minute PR.
Pay no attention to my results from this year.
I really don't think there is a more beautiful run on the east coast.  Absolutely awesome.

It begins outside of the American Airlines Arena (where the Miami Heat play), immediately takes you onto the MacArthur Causeway (the only hill on the course and at .4 miles in, it does not feel like anything at all) into the beach, on Ocean Drive, Washington Ave. and then back into downtown along the Venetian Causeway.
The last three miles of the half are in downtown and it is pretty entertaining with bands, music and marching bands entertaining you along the way.
The finish line is at Bayfront Park, about a block away from the start line.
The marathon will break off at mile 12.8 and head down towards Coconut Grove (the turnaround point) and along Bayshore Drive, Key Biscayne and back into downtown for the finish.  I have never done the marathon, but can tell you the second half of the course is just as beautiful as the first.  That is where I do all of my long runs on the weekends.  Gorgeous.

This year was the 10th anniversary and we got this sweet medal:
They also had awesome shirts - ladies fit!
I even picked up a beach towel.  I loved that I could buy something different!
I love orange.
Everything about this race is super organized.  The expo is great, the bag check is great, finish line area (while crowded) is organized.
Well, the only thing that is less then awesome are the start corrals.  They are there, there are signs, but I have no idea how to get into them.  I was in corral H, but I do admit I had no intention of starting there.  The only thing that meant to me was "H, like Heather".
I knew I wouldn't get to the start super early and I knew it would be hard to find the entrance into the corral, so I just hung back and jumped in with F when they were passing by.  That worked just fine.
The water stops (especially for the first 6 miles) were kind of a disaster.  Lots of garbage, more than I had ever seen before.  To be fair, I have since seen pictures of the NYC marathon water stops and they looked similar.  I guess a lot of runners = a lot of trash.
Oh! One other thing... there wasn't a water stop until mile 3.  I thought that was a little too long to wait.  It was simply to humid that day to wait for water.  Mile 1.5 or 2 should have a stop.

Aside from really small annoyances, I really love this race and will continue to do it as long as I live in Miami.  
Anyone want to join me next year?


  1. That race sounds awesome...and that shirt and medal are great!! Way to go!!

  2. This race sounds great - that medal is GINORMOUS. holy cow. And I also love orange...

    Thanks for running the Team Gab Virtual Race!

  3. That medal is awesome!! I agree- love the orange. I'm so sorry you were sick, but good for you getting it done!