Race Recap: 2018 Eugene Half Marathon— Eugene, OR


I had heard it before, but everyone was right. It’s a great feeling to run the track at Historic Hayward field and cross the finish line after a running a tough race. I finished the Eugene Half Marathon on April 29th and despite the forecast of rain, the weather was perfect!

Jason also ran the race as did my friend Ryan, who made the Eugene Half Marathon his very first half marathon ever. It was so exciting to go through the whole race experience with him.

Ryan and I both had interrupted training, which never leads to great pre-race feelings, but I was determined to put my knee injuries behind me. I knew I had to take the race slow and I also knew that Ryan was likely to run at least a 10 minute mile. Ryan decided he wanted to try to run with me despite my slower pace, at least for a little bit, so I developed an unorthodox race plan for the day

I knew I could finish the race, so I decided to go out harder for the first 4 miles, running with Ryan and then back off to a slower pace. When Ryan was still running with me after the four mile marker, I did switch my interval timer to a better ratio for me, but I still tried to keep my pace fairly high, since I was running with a faster running buddy.

My finishing time probably doesn’t reflect the effort I put into this race, but I raced hard at the Eugene Half Marathon.

I really started feeling the struggle once we passed Hayward field to head out for our last few miles. Jason, who had already finished, managed to cheer us on, pancakes in hand. “Ryan’s killing me,” I joked as I ran past.

The wind didn’t want us to take this mile 10 photo, but I swear the banner ahead is mile 10.

At mile 10, we stopped for my super quick, traditional mile 10 photo. What followed were 3 painful miles, the most beautiful of the race. We crossed the river twice and ran on pathways through the park. In view of Autzen stadium, the course met up with the faster marathoners, as we all headed back to Hayward field to finish.

With only a few blocks to go, I finally convinced Ryan, who was feeling great, to go for it and race to the finish.

I lost sight of him almost immediately he started running so fast!

Despite how tired I was, once I set foot on the track at Hayward field, a big grin spread across my face.

I felt like I could fly, but after racing hard, my legs did not agree and I didn’t really have a sprint left in me.

I crossed the line hearing a grandstand full of cheering people to receive an awesome finisher’s medal.

I think I thought I was running faster than I was at the finish line

Ryan, somehow gained minutes on me in less than a mile, so congratulations for an awesome first half! He’s sure to get a massive PR on his next race.

Post-race, we were handed a goodie bag and a water bottle, which was a nice change from having to balance a bunch of stuff in your arms immediately after running.

Pancakes make me happy! #eugenehalfmarathon #eugenemarathon

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I don’t advise my weird race plan and it certainly wore me out. As a result, the pancakes at the finish line tasted amazing, even though I don’t usually like pancakes.

We also aren’t sure how we got so lucky with the weather, which stayed cool and overcast, but didn’t rain a drop on us.

Celebrating a Half Marathon Finish.

All in all, a beautiful race!

Ran With: Ryan, for his first half marathon!
Time: 2:50:39
Moment of Betrayal:
There was plenty of cheering, but hills were still hard. They say the Eugene Marathon is fast and flat, but that day, I felt like the Eugene Half Marathon wasn’t. Just saying.

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Race Recap: 2017 HoHo 5K —Tigard, OR


Katie wore her penguin tights and I donned my holiday shirt and sparkle skirt for a fun holiday-themed run.
So many great races run through Cook Park and the HoHo 5K was another one.

Katie and I used the race as an excuse to catch up, and chatted our way through the course, not particularly worrying about our time or pace.

Unlike some holiday races, it was a small race with locals, but the post-race was awesome. They provided HoHos and Snowballs and never have ridiculous Hostess snack cakes ever tasted so good. I don’t think I ever had a snowball before though, and it was a bizarre food item. I’m still not sure what I think about it!

Ran With: Katie
Bizarre Holiday moment: Finding out that one of the raffle prizes is a fruitcake that you can return the following year for a free race entry. Some of them have circulated for nearly 10 years.

Race Recap: 2017 Monterey Bay Half Marathon— Monterey, CA


The 2017 Monterey Bay Half Marathon was probably one of the most beautiful Half Marathon I’ve ever run.

Running the Lighthouse 5K was a wonderful preview for the Race and I was pretty excited that morning.

Ready for the start of the #MontereyBayHalf! #montereybayhm

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I decided my goal for the race, since I was running it solo, was to have as much fun as possible and just enjoy being out and running. I wanted to set a good pace and not slack, but I was certainly not going for time. Instead, I had a blast posting photos on instagram mid-race!

Made it thru psychedelic tunnel to meet this guy! #montereybayhm #MontereyBayHalf

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The course was mostly an out-and-back course, following the bay. It took us through Cannery Row, past the Monterey Bay Aquarium, through Pacific Grove and past the lighthouse before heading out to Asilomar State Beach.

I had to take a picture with the Sunfish and Jellyfish!

I was really looking forward to running past the aquarium because on the previous day, a staff member who saw our 5K medals told us she’d be out cheering. A ton of aquarium staff were there, making it a really fun time!

The fun thing about an out-and-back course is spotting friends— I kept my eye out for Jason, Jason2 and Melissa the entire time, cheering them on if I spotted them. Since Jason is so much faster than me, we really enjoy our mid-race moments on these type of courses.

Once out of town and on to the pathway, the main attraction was the bay. It was gorgeous weather and I spent plenty of miles just gazing out to sea, looking for whales— after all, the race announcer promised us at the start line that he booked some whales as entertainment.
I didn’t see whales, but I did see a sea otter. Other than that, simply feeling the ocean breeze and warm sun in the middle of Novemeber was a special treat.

Beautiful! #montereybayhm #MontereyBayHalf

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Around mile 8 I could start to feel the miles, but I pushed back any negative thoughts and kept a big smile on my face. It was too nice of a day to do anything else! One tiny, yet steep, hill nearly killed me, but it wasn’t long until I was rounding the bend to the finish line!

Bling and Boats— I had to show off my medals by the marina.

Jason2 and Melissa both PR’d on this fast course and all four of us earned our Ocean View Challenge medals. Despite my goofing around, I was also pleased with my time. I had kept up a great pace the whole time and was very happy with my performance.
Overall, I loved this race and would definitely do it again!


Time: 2:46:10

Ran With: A solo run this time!

Unexpected awesomeness: I’ve seen interesting mile markers before, but the cartoonish signs in this race never failed to make me smile every mile.

Shout-out to: Random girl scout who allowed me to switch my medal from one with pink lettering to yellow lettering (seriously? Why make them different?)

Best Playlist Moment:
Running past the beautiful bay views, as the Moana soundtrack is singing out “See the light as it shines on the sea? It’s blinding…”

Race Recap: 2017 Pacific Grove Lighthouse 5K— Pacific Grove, CA

We’re at the starting point, but the course is visible in the background along the shore.

I went to Monterey expecting to run a half marathon, but the Pacific Grove Lighthouse 5K on November 11 looked so darn fun!

Jason and I took a road trip to San Francisco and Monterey for the Monterey Bay Half Marathon. We were going to run it with Jason2 and Melissa. Although we knew they were signed up for the Ocean View Challenge, we didn’t really think much of running a 5K and weren’t interested.

That, of course, was until we got there. The night before, we decided to dress in our extra running clothes just in case they had day-of-race sign-ups. The day of, we were dressed to run, but still unsure. I looked out at the ocean, with the sun shining and thought “I’d much rather be a part of the race than just watch.”

So Jason and I signed up and ran! It was a beautiful prelude to the half marathon, despite the fact that I missed seeing the lighthouse both times we ran past. We even got t-shirts that they had left over!

Later that day at the expo, they kindly upgraded our bibs to the Ocean View Challenge in light of the fact that we’d already run the 5K.

Ran With: Just me!
Time: 35:44

Race Recap: 2017 Run Like Hell 10K—Portland, OR

After spending all my energy on a major project at work and working overtime hours, the Run Like Hell 10K on October 22nd was the perfect stress-buster of a race.

I didn’t have as much time to think about costumes and I wasn’t excited at all about the costume theme (rock stars). Nevertheless, we pulled together an outfit of sorts. Kelly, Mom and I pulled out our bright blue sparkle skirts (the legacy of the Hop Hop Half Marathon), wore some beads and in a nod to the theme, I wore my Rock ‘n’ Roll Vancouver running shirt.

We even avoided most of the rain, although it started coming down after the race.

The race was almost all gentle uphill for the first half, which meant the second half was entirely downhill. It takes me about 2 miles to warm up, but once I did, I felt pretty good. After being stuck behind a desk, it felt good to run fast. I enjoyed seeing all the costumes and Halloween spirit and there was entertainment on the course.

Considering the first half was entirely uphill, I was pretty happy with my time.

I flew to the finish, where I got a medal, and free cider! The blood orange cider was delicious, but the real surprise was the pumpkin cider which was way more delicious than expected.

Post-race fun at the 2017 Run Like Hell!

 

 

Ran With: Kelly, Mom
Time: 1:17:00

 

Race Recap: 2017 Greenway Park Trail Trial 10K— Beaverton, OR

Fast finish on a hot and humid day!

In a first attempt to get a fast 10K time, I ran the Greenway Park 10K on September 4th, 2017. Luckily, the weather wasn’t too hot, but smoke from the Columbia Gorge wildfire soon lowered the air quality. I think the poor air quality is the reason I had a headache the rest of the day.

The race went off in waves, in a time trial format, to prevent overcrowding on the narrow pathways.

I ran part of the race with Kelly, before peeling off to see if I could run faster. Overall, I wasn’t disappointed with my time, and it was awesome to get free loaves of bread.

Free bread! Truly the best part of the race.

Ran with: Kelly
Time: 1:13:42