305 Half Marathon 2019

I’m promoting 305 Half as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to find and write race reviews!

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Let me start by saying I have ran this race/course for the past 7 years and every year it still feels as challenging. Some years I have sub two hour finishes, some years I’m a few minutes behind, some years I just want to finish alive. This was my first half marathon back in 2013 and even though those bridges are challenging, I continue to sign up year after year.

Last year the race was more Miami than usual with a pots and pans PR station because everyone in Miami goes out in the streets with their pots and pans for the home team victories. This year was much like last years with the 305 feel with cafecito by the starting line and lots of great food vendors afterwards. There was a major hiccup that happened a few days before the race, the race medals were on a train for California and not Florida so the race management hustled and put together a temp medal till we can get the official 0 medal to complete our 3 year challenge. Also due to the UPS mistake they gave out $5 Starbucks gift cards as well as a code for free UPS my choice premium membership for a year. I look forward to getting my 0 medal in the mail in the next couple weeks.

Now back to the changes and things that were really helpful. Usually the port a potties are lined up at the end of the starting corral but this time they were actually put into the hard packed sand across from where the finish line was and there were huge lights to illuminate them. That is perfect, well almost lol, some sand got into my sock which was kind of annoying BUT I did like the fact that it was out of the starting corral area which really clogs up the area for runners.

The iRun pacers were great as usual, I tucked in behind the 2:00 finish time pacers and managed to stick with them for 8 miles, the pace was a little faster than I expected. But after the brief rain shower at mile 7 the humidity was getting very thick. The sun burning the rain off the pavement was just a bit much for me when I had to trek up one of the final bridges back to Miami Beach, the MacArthur and so I decided to take a little walk break up it or risk fainting from the humidity. After that the flat running was working well for me and I stopped slacking a little. I got to see my favorite running buddy, Harolyn at the mile 10.5 water stop, she ran over to cheer on her friends and ended up helping out at the water stop.

I got caught by a few photographers this year which doesn’t always happen when I am running with a pace group. One caught me when I was ascending the 2nd bridge of the course, caught the grit on my face haha. I really do not like hills/bridges because I am used to training in my very flat Miami neighborhood and don’t get to make it out to Key Biscayne for tackling the large bridge anymore with a toddler. Training is a lot different now than it used to be.

I hope that next year I will be getting a course PR during this race, that is the plan at least! Possibly a new half PR that is if I can get in some bridge training this year.

Onward to the finish line, where cold water, cold towels and temporary medals were handed out. After that you head into the post race party zone after getting some fruit/protein bars from the athlete food tent. At the back of the food tent was a chicken and rice food area, but I did not stop and try out that. I actually did not want to smell any food after finishing the rest.  In that tent I prepared my Nuun so that I could hydrate back to human. Tucked a banana securely into the pocket of my Oiselle pocket jogger shorts and my water bottle in the other pocket.  That is where we picked up our Starbucks card and letter from UPS about the medal mishap. I went immediately to the Florida Storm Series tent and picked up my category 4 medal, that didn’t take long at all and then walked around to see the different vendors. I ran into my Oiselle teammate Daniela’s parents who ran the 5k/half marathon at the Air Relax booth. I walked around and got some shaved ice from the Kona Ice truck and then went to the Yasso truck and had a greek froyo bar in my favorite Yasso bar flavor, chocolate chip cookie dough. After saying hi to a few more friends in the finisher area I walked back to my car and headed up. Everywhere in Miami seems to be under construction lately and Miami Beach was no different but luckily the traffic was not too terrible when I left at 9am.

I will be signing up for the 2020 race to complete my 3 year challenge, but I know that I will continue signing up for this race as long as I am able to run it. Claimed my results on athlinks right after the race and then by that evening the FREE race photos were available on the app! Sign up now for the best rates for next year’s 305 Half Marathon!

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305 Half Marathon, Are you in? (discount code too!)

Disclaimer: I’m promoting 305 Half Marathon as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to find and write race reviews!

305 half marathon

Have you ever wanted to run a race that was mostly along the beach boardwalk/walkway and also over some challenging bridges? Well then the 305 Half Marathon is your race!

This was actually my first half marathon EVER, but it was called a different name back then in 2013. I trained for 3 months to get to this starting line and had no idea about these bridges but still somehow managed to pull off a 2:03 finish without even hydrating during the race. I did some things wrong during that race but did learn about taking in fuel at the right times, I started burning out at mile 9 that day, it was a great learning experience. Now I run with the pace groups (iRun)  for this race to keep me on pace for an under 2 hr finish.

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This year we will be earning our “0” medal to be almost done with the “305” medals! After the 2020 race we will have a complete 305 medal for this 3 year challenge of sorts. But don’t worry if you missed last year’s race for some reason you can purchase the 3 and run a half marathon on your own time to “earn” it so you can have a complete series when you run this year and next year’s race 🙂

Haven’t signed up yet? You are in luck, I have a discount code to save $10 on the half marathon and/or $5 on the 5k race that morning. Both races are taking place at the same time so unfortunately you cannot run both to get double medals 😉 Use this code : BIBRAVE305

You’re welcome and I hope to see you out there in a little over a month!

 

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Have you ever ran this race before? Or one of the other names this name has gone by in the past, Michelob Ultra Miami Beach Half Marathon? Allstate Miami Beach Half marathon? What do you find challenging in running a half marathon?

Miami Marathon 2019 Weekend

Disclaimer: I received free entry to Tropical 5k race & am promoting Miami Marathon as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

Let’s start with Friday, Miami Marathon expo opens at Mana convention center in Wynwood, a district known for art galleries and hipster bars. I really like this area for the expo, even though parking can be a hassle it is generally cheaper than when the expo was held at the Miami Beach convention center in the past. As part of the VIP experience we had complimentary valet parking but I chose to get to the area early and scored a very close spot, on the street beside the Mana parking lot. Also as part of VIP we were able to enter the expo one hour before the general public. I got there around 11:30am so I had a nice walk around the displays for 30 minutes before it got pretty crowded. I checked into the VIP lounge and headed to the packet pickup area in the back of the convention center to pick up my race bibs for my two races. VIP participants get to walk a red carpet to pick up their bib, and it will probably be my only opportunity to walk a red carpet so that was a fun perk. Pickup was easy breezy and I received my VIP bracelet & swag bag to wear all weekend to take part in all the VIP events. Some things I knew that I could not attend like the cocktail party on Friday night since I was running the Tropical 5k early the next morning, plus I really don’t partake in alcohol so close to race days.

After I got my race bibs for Miami Marathon and Tropical 5k I took a walk down the AthlEat street to try out some new things and had a taste of my favorites like MaraNatha almond butter and Harmless Harvest coconut water. I walked back to check out the VIP lounge to rest my legs whilst charging my phone with the sofa! I sat down and checked out my swag bag containing a very nice full zip jacket with the Miami Marathon logo on the back, a stainless steel Miami Marathon branded tumbler, and a lotion/chapstick combo pack in a nice sized reuseable tote. After hanging out there for awhile I walked around to visit some friends who were working at the expo and ran into a couple more friends while walking around and checking out some of the booths. I got to try out the normatec boots, which I have always been curious about but never had the opportunity to try them out, I got a chance at the expo for 10 minutes while meeting another Bibrave pro. I returned to the lounge one last time, that’s when I discovered that I could’ve used the Normatec boots without a wait in the lounge. Facepalm. Okay, so now I know for the future if I sign up for the VIP experience again next year. Also they had massages available as well as treadmills to use to loosen up the legs while in the lounge. I picked up a vegan salad to eat while there as well as a Ten water for electrolytes. I am always terrible at hydrating the Friday before my race weekend so it was much appreciated. I stopped by the official merchandise booth and got Phoebe a Future Finisher tee (the same one I managed to lose last year at the expo) and tucked it securely in my Oiselle spike bag. The expo was getting pretty crowded when I left just before 2pm to head back home to get as much rest as possible with a toddler.

Saturday morning I woke up to torrential rains and cold weather. I put on my new Miami Marathon jacket over my Bibrave singlet and headed out, making sure to put my running shoes in a bag to carry to the car to keep my feet as dry as possible for as long as possible. Parking was easy at Watson Island, right beside the Children’s museum and waited around an hour till it was 7am and I had to get out of the warm and dry car to use the bathroom before the race. By that time the rain had pretty much stopped so I took of my poncho as soon as I finished in the port a potty and after crossing the starting line I threw it to the side to one of the spectators. Just before the 7:30am start it started sprinkling, which later turned into a more steady rain once I was around mile 1. It reminded me of the 2017 Miami Marathon weather, where it was 55 and raining the whole 26.2 miles. Ran into a couple friends along the course but hurried through the miles, reminding a young runner to watch running along the slippery white painted street lines. Pretty much ran across the finish line, grabbed my water and a medal and headed to the finisher photo opp quickly, got a pic and went to Nikki Beach for a bagel and banana and ran to the buses back to Watson Island. Usually I like to stay longer and take some pics on Miami Beach with my medal but with the weather being so horrible I thought it was best to head back as soon as possible to dry off and prevent any possible colds the 22 hrs before Miami Marathon began. Funnily enough the bus driver got a bit lost on the way back to Watson Island and hopped a curb but eventually we made it back to our cars safely. Then it was mom mode the rest of the day, went home,  showered and took toddler to swimming class before heading home and trying to slightly carb load and stay dry the rest of the day. It rained all of Saturday and the rain continued through the night, everyone I knew running the race was preparing for another 2017 sort of weather conditions.

Packed my race bag the night before and had my throwaway jacket ready as well as my rain poncho,  I figured I would use it at least for a few of the first miles. Alas race morning came and it was another soggy morning with a steady rain as I left my house for the AAA, where I would park. A week before we had received an email that being part of the VIP experience we would be able to park free on race morning but when I got to the ticket taker she said I should’ve had a neon yellow parking pass. I was not given one at the expo so I paid $5 like the past years. That was kind of annoying but at least I was prepared for it. I gathered all my stuff and headed to the 1000 Miles Run Club tent in the charity village to gear check my stuff and meet up with running friends for a group pic. We had a VIP gear check also but I just wanted to check my stuff with my running club tent instead since I would be heading back there post race to change into dry/warm clothes. Getting to the tent in full rain gear and a warm hoodie I began to notice that it was wayyy too warm to be wearing the hoodie was the rain was beginning to stop and the humidity was starting to creep back in. After dropping my post race bag at the tent I went in search of my Every Mother Counts teammates and said hi to them before heading back to the AAA again to use the bathroom.

Getting into the B corral was not as big of a problem as getting into other corrals in the past, that was another perk of having VIP, having an early corral so therefore an earlier start. Was able to wait and dispel my nervous energy with way too much chatter with my bibravepro teammate, Mike, sorry dude! I ditched my hoodie and rain poncho on the fence of the corral as soon as I got in there, it was getting toasty already and not raining at that point. I thought that it was both good and bad in the sense that we got to start earlier so the sun would be less brutal than say 10-15 minutes later start but then you had to think about all the super speedy runners in the same corral who would be passing you and the C corral. That was a big crazy, I didn’t get run over or anything but it did cause my brain to think that I was not running fast enough even though I was holding back a few of the first miles till I was hitting my marathon goal pace. The first couple of miles flew by as I ran up the McArthur and heard the sounds of the bagpipers at the very top, through South Beach, around the golf course and through the Venetian Islands. When reaching Downtown again right after the Venetian toll booth I was met with lots of cheers and lots of familiar faces. One of my Ragnar teammates, Shirlei handed me a cold mini bottle of water, I carried that water for a couple more miles, it was very appreciated. I also saw the young daughter of our Every Mother Counts local leader cheering me on with great force, those miles were faster miles as well, miles 11-12. For me mile 12 is kind of annoying to hear all the spectators screaming “ALMOST THERE!” when you still have another race to go. The cheer squads from Nike and Lululemon were out in full force for that mile so that kept the hype up. Right after the split between half and full marathon the streets become quiet without the spectators and you are fully able to open your arms. It is kind of a surreal and peaceful feeling, which is good because you still have 13.1 more miles to go before you are done. Then you see that bridge, and thinking hmm, was this a good idea? Don’t worry you will be seeing that bridge again, later on, prepare your mind for it. I also was hoping to see another Ragnar teammate, Esther at mile 14 as she had told me online she would be there with water and fuel if needed. And right under the mile 14 sign was my cheerful and vibrant friend, ready with a mini bottle of water and a piece of a banana. I gratefully took both and kept heading down Brickell, passing this extreme wind tunnel in front of the Fortune building (where Brickell Run Club meets every Tuesday night). I particularly enjoy the popsicles on the corner just past that every year and I continued on to till I got to Rickenbacker. At that point my energy was running a bit low even though I had been taking in my honey stinger chews every few miles like I had trained. Then as if a musical miracle Queen with Bowie playing Under Pressure started on a nearby speaker and anyone who knows me knows just how much I love Queen! I was jamming to that song the rest of that mile, as I ran farther from it but continued singing along with it as I went, the photographer caught me doing a bird like motion as I was hearing it. One of the great moments where music can help push you through what seems like impossible, with 10 miles to go things were looking brighter again. I don’t run with music very often anymore but at that moment I missed it. Onward through the grove, along Bayshore drive memories flooded in of running along that path for many, nearly all training runs in 2014-2015. One of the reasons I love Miami Marathon so much is because of all the great memories it brings back as I run along the course, from pre runner Lisa to runner Lisa times. Going through the downtown Grove area is always fun and scenic but the smells of breakfast foods was making me a bit nauseous. Guessing because my stomach was not in eating mode, but rather in running mode so I was not hungry and did not want to smell or think of food at that time. I took some walking breaks through those miles as my mind was getting tired, more than my legs. Through the Grove neighborhoods with families out in their front yards with water and snacks for us was fun, I didn’t see any beer stands this year, not that I would’ve been able to stomach that either. At mile 24 I finally found the pineapple chunks I had been looking for at mile 12, I must’ve missed them back there but I got these. Something else I remembered to do this year that sometimes I have forgotten to do in the past was thank the volunteers at all the stops. They are volunteering their time and for long hours they are on their feet so that you can have that hydration or fuel so always try to thank your race volunteers. Volunteering at a race a couple months ago changed my whole idea of volunteers and how important they are. It was at that point I made the decision that no more walking was allowed, no matter how much my mind was telling me I needed to walk instead of run. I breezed through the next couple of water stops and trust me I hit most of the water stops on my second half of the race that day. Just before mile 25 was the GoRun Miami crew with the owner Doug out there cheering me on, then not far after the iRun crew was out in full effect with one of their owners, Hector cheering me on! Also Alicia got some moving pics of me when I ran through there, love those peeps, maybe one day I will be able to make it to run clubs again and run with those speedsters. With less than a mile to go I came back to that bridge where I tried to help another 1000 miles member up it without stopping but she was having major leg cramps. I figured that I would walk up it but with the adrenaline pumping, knowing I was so close to the finish line, I climbed that bridge as fast as possible and got through it. A few more turns through the downtown buildings and I was in the finishing chute, I never try to encourage the crowd to get more cheery but this year I did, raising my arms to get more cheers from them and it was amazing!! As soon as I finished my friend, Oscar was there to help runners through the finisher chute, not to catch bandits like I originally thought. He congratulated me and even presented me with my 26.2 medal and walked me over to the food tent where he grabbed a vegetarian post race meal for me. Such an awesome race day and I didn’t even notice the humid windy weather as much, apparently I was so focused that I did not even see an Oiselle Volee teammate along the course who screamed to me. I tried to keep moving after but was stuck in a finisher photo line for a little bit but got to meet another VIP experience lady who I was able to direct to the post race tent.

I headed to the 1000 miles tent and got to talk to a few of my favorites before changing in their mini changing room. It was then that I noticed my left foot was covered in blood, apparently along the race I got a blister, it popped and that was where all the blood came from. I had no pain so just changed socks and shoes also and headed over to the VIP tent to see what they had. I don’t know how many others have this issue but for a couple hours after running a marathon I am not hungry at all. I walked around and looked at all the yummy food that I had no plans on consuming, they even had Belgian waffles and lots of other hot dishes. I chose a strawberry and a bagel, can you believe it, I picked a bagel from all the yummy food, a race staple from every race, small or large, haha. I brought the bagel home with me since I could not think about eating it yet, I did eat the strawberry while in the tent. I walked over to the massage/normatec boot tent area to see if I could get in some recovery treatment but the line was long and I did not feel like waiting around awhile so I walked back to the AAA. In the past my IT band has been sore after the marathon and I am usually walking pretty slowly back to my car but not this year. I don’t know exactly why I was feeling less creaky after the race but I think possibly it had something to do with not sitting on the side as soon as I finished like I saw a ton of marathon participants doing, I kept walking around for over an hour. Even after arriving home from the race, I did not feel like I was going to fall down when I got out of the car like happens a lot after long distance races. Drank my Ripple protein shake and got my shower so that I could take my daughter to visit her great grandma for a couple hours. I did get in a mini nap while there, 45 minutes and was eventually able to eat some pizza afterwards.

Something I did different for the race that you are really not supposed to do is wear new gear for race day that you haven’t trained in. Well I got some new Oiselle summer rogas in a douglas fir color and decided a few days before the race to wear them. I have ran in rogas for many years and love them dearly so I knew they would probably be fine and they were fine and worked well in the humid weather. Usually it’s not advised but these had a lot of pocket space so I knew they would be perfect for marathon distance, I highly recommend them. Now on the other hand my Every Mother Counts singlet did not treat my skin so well, and I train in it pretty often, chafe disaster under my arm. The singlet is a little big on me so it scraped me pretty well in the humidity but it will heal quickly, just momentarily painful.

I had to adjust my goal time since the weather was not a cool 55 like was originally expecting, nor was it raining, which could have helped also. My A goal was 4:00:00 finish time but my B goal was under 4:30:00 and would you believe it, I got my B goal by seconds! And I do mean seconds, 2 seconds to be exact lol.

I am already signed up for Miami Marathon 2020 and I urge you to sign up right now too since the prices are as low! Apparently they were lower if you signed up while at the expo but I didn’t even think about it, but next year I will sign up while at the expo. Also I really enjoyed the VIP experience and think that if you can afford it, it is filled with awesome perks that will make your race experience even more fun.

That’s a wrap, Miami Marathon 2019!

Want to read my previous race reviews for Miami Marathon:

Miami Marathon 2018

Miami Marathon 2017

Miami Marathon 2016

Apparently I didn’t review the 2015 race?

Miami Marathon 2014

Tropical 5k 2013

 

Run Virtually using Zwift app & foot pod – A review

Disclaimer: I received an zwift foot pod to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

The Zwift app is a very, very cool option for runners/cyclists. It allows you to train while competing against others from all around the world and all you really need is a bluetooth enabled treadmill or footpod and the app! It’s like a video game for athletes that will allow you to run in different places while running against friends/strangers to keep your motivation up. Also you are able to customize your avatar to look pretty much like yourself and along the run/miles you log you will get more clothing/gear options for your avatar.

This is definitely something that I am going to take with me on my cruise next year so I can train but not get totally bored while running on a treadmill. Also will help my weekday runs become not so boring. Just hoping that there is an app option for the amazon fire by then, crossing my fingers here!

There is so many stats that you can watch while you run virtually on here and I imagine it’s the same way for the cyclists, I am tempted to try it out on my bro in law’s stationary bike to see how it looks from a cyclists point of view. You can watch your place and see your mile splits as well as watch yourself on the leader board change, all while running through some crazy places. In the 6 miles I first tried it out on I was running by a beach, through an aquarium, through a forest, around a mountain and then on a path while it was snowing all while actually sweating it out in 80 degree weather on a treadmill in Miami! I do not know who came up with this concept but I love it and I’m pretty sure most people will like this, especially former gamer/now athletes.

Their slogan is serious training made fun and I have to agree that it was fun but there were a couple of issues along the way that I ran into, sometimes my foot pod would not read that I was still running so that slowed my pace down considerably. I have to try a few more things to see if maybe it is on my laces too tightly and not reading my steps properly.

Ran a schedule group tempo run with my BibRavePro friends and everything worked out and ran some pretty quick paces to keep up with the group. I liked the workout format and the fact that it was telling me when to speed up on the treadmill and when I should slow to cool down a bit before I finished. It was like being coached in person but this required some reading, which on an iphone 7 while running 9:00 min miles was not the easiest task. I think that if you are going to try this app out, let it be on a laptop or tablet or just anything bigger than a phone.

Also even though you can still run and cycle on the Zwift app to get more interactive with others and sign up for certain runs/training you should also get the Zwift Companion app to get the most out of it. So that is two apps, one to sign up for scheduled events and one to actually do the running/cycling. Now I am definitely a fan and going to take this with me on an upcoming trip where I may possibly have access to a treadmill. Going to get in some real training and not just easy road runs while on winter vacation.

Use “BibRave15″ good for 15% off the cost of the Zwift RunPod at Zwift.com. It is good for 1000 Pods only.

UnderArmour HOVR Sonic NC

“Disclaimer: I received a pair of UnderArmour HOVR Sonics NC shoes to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!”

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So first thing is first, I really did not expect to ever own a pair of white running shoes but here we are and they are very white! The color aside I was not sure how I would like them. It did take a few runs before they felt broken in for me, which wasn’t too bad but I have been spoiled by some other running shoes that felt broken in out of the box. I think also it might have been my feet had to get used to the higher drop on these shoes. I am used to a 4 mm drop and these are 8 mm drop but after a couple of runs in these I didn’t even notice it.

These shoes are made with a lightweight fabric upper and lots of ventilation holes on the sides so they are perfect for warm climates like Miami. I have never felt my feet heating up in these shoes like other running shoes I sometimes wear. I do not like feeling sweat in the bottom of my shoes after a long humid run, worst feeling and good way to get some feet blisters, something I have definitely never encountered while wearing these shoes!

Responsive ride and neutral shoe so perfect for those who do not over pronate and are looking for something with some bounce but still want a firm running shoe. I will admit they felt heavy the first few runs in them, but that may have also been that sometimes I wear them for my 2nd run of the day and at that point my legs are pretty tired from early morning runs and working all day.

I would have brought them on my recent vacation but decided against in so that I could keep them white as long as possible. When running in Aruba white does not stay white for more than a few seconds, half of the roads I ran on were dirt so basically trail running most of the time. Dust is everywhere so I didn’t bring them with me but I did miss them which surprised me a bit.

At this point I have put in between 50-100 miles in these shoes and they are still remarkably clean but maybe that’s because I tend to not wear them on rainy days. Either way these shoes really have changed my mind about UnderArmour running shoes. So if you are looking for a quality running shoe with a low break in period of time, snatch these up.

Also there is a connect version of this shoe, which basically means you can track your steps, pace, stride length, distance and cadence with the connect version using the map my run app. Pretty cool and that version of the shoe only costs $10 more dollars if you are into all the tech and like to run watch less but want to know all the stats.

 

Miami Marathon 2019

“Disclaimer: I received free entry to Tropical 5k and am promoting Miami Marathon as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!”

I am all signed up for both races of Miami Marathon weekend once again! This is the 3rd year that I will run both the Tropical 5k (as my shakeout run) and the Miami Marathon the next day 😉

Going to share a few of my favorite pics from my Miami Marathons/Tropical 5ks of the past (2013-2018)

 

Save $10 off registration with the code: BIBRAVE19 at checkout!

#NotRunningWithoutYou

305 Half Marathon – A Race Recap

Disclaimer: I’m promoting 305 Half Marathon as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

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Race day attire (arm sleeves were not required)

Going into this race morning I was a bit tired, had ran the DRI hope for a cure 5k on Saturday morning and ended up taking my daughter into a pediatric urgent care later on for a fever after coughing for a week. Spent a few hours there and ended up leaving with antibiotics and nebulizer liquid for her with instructions to give her treatment every 4-6 hrs and bring her back immediately for anymore fevers. Exhausted and not going to sleep till closer to 10:30pm, I woke up at 3:30am to get ready and head to the 305 Half Marathon. Luckily I had laid out my clothing/shoes and race bag was ready to go so I basically just got up, jumped in my clothes and ate some cereal before heading out.

 

By some miracle we had cool weather at the start, I was debating on checking a bag or not but ultimately changed my mind, also changed my mind about needing arm sleeves for the race (good choice!) I did sit in my car for awhile in my Every Mother Counts hoodie to wait as long as possible before heading out into the cool weather. This wasn’t the 55 degree weather was predicted originally on the weather channel app but rather 60-62 degrees. Not bad but when the wind whipped through the buildings/hotels on South Beach it could feel quite nippy. Not bad though as usually this race is quite warm or even kind of rainy, in the past 6 years, this has been the coldest it’s been for this race. So I basically walked quickly to the port o potties and peed before meeting up with another running friend, Stephanie (TheCookieRunner) at the Miami Beach clock and she gave me a cool Momentum bracelet that would remind me later in the race to Just Breathe. We talked for a little bit and then I headed into the starting corral, where it was warmer with all the people crowded in. Talked to my friend, Carmen before the start and vowed that I would try to stick with the 2 hour pacer as long as possible. Starting I felt fresh and the cool air helped me in staying ahead of the 2 hour pacer at least for the first 7 miles of the race. They gave the pacers speakers filled with Miami/running related songs and just general anthems to pump you up: PitBull, Enrique Iglesias, Beyonce, Cake, AC/DC to name a few I heard while running with the group. At mile 6 I saw our Every Mother Counts South Florida ambassador, Esther and was cheered on by her. I think the ascend up the MacArthur Causeway slowed me down a bit but then a friendly cheer from my friend/mayor, Harolyn around mile 10 helped me get back out of my head and speed up a little for the final 5k of the race. Along the way lots of iRun runners were cheering us on and at the end Frankie Ruiz was running back to find his fiance to cross the line together, got a high five from him as I passed. Then Hector from iRun was about half a mile from the finish line and urged me to go faster, so I followed his instructions and sped up to even kick it up a bit and not let some other runner (guy) pass me at the finish line!

Something I did different during this race that I haven’t done before in a half marathon was not take in any nutrition. I think it helped that I had half of a bowl from Chipotle the night before and cereal race morning that helped fuel my race. I brought my Honey Stinger chews with me but never took them out of my back pocket of my awesome pocket full Oiselle pocket jogger shorts. So weird but somehow it worked, I do train with them generally and use the starting at mile 6 but this time I just didn’t need them.

I crossed the line in just under 2 hours, like literally 40 seconds or so before the 2 hour mark, I pushed at the end a little and my splits show it but I did not feel totally depleted. The course was slightly different at the end, which I did not realize until we were running it, I’m glad because that running straight into the blazing sun at South Point Pier is no fun after 12 miles!  Right after the finish line after collecting your medal and water there was a pots and pans PR station where you could hit the pots and pans together in celebration for a new half marathon PR. I had no PR but saw a couple people taking advantage of hitting the pans. It’s been a couple years since Miami has celebrated in the streets with pots and pans from a Heat championship win or Castro death, haha So some folks were very eager to hit them. After that was a long line to take pic in front of the official finisher backdrop, but I had no time to stand in the line but I think it would’ve been nice to get that free photo. I got some pretzels and the food tent had the regular runner food: bananas, fruit cups, pretzels, cookies, bagels and then pastelitos, empandas and some other little hispanic dessert cups. Very cool but I was not really in the mood to eat anything and no sweets after the race. I really just wanted to get home to my sick toddler and get some rest time. I went to the Storm Series tent and collected my category 4 medal before looking around at the other sponsor tents and then heading back to the car. Took a couple pics first and headed back to the finish line for a cool pic of my medal when Frankie Ruiz and Carla Duenas were crossing the finish line together, caught a few pics and then headed back to the parking garage. The weather was awesome for the cool down walk back to the parking garage, almost a mile away. Did not have the extreme soreness when I got home and got out of my car after sitting down and driving for 25 minutes from South Beach like I was expecting.

Great race and afterwards got an email from Athlinks to remind me to claim my new half marathon result and check out my pictures later on that evening. If you do not already use Athlinks, you need to get create a profile and add all your race results from the past. You can have all your race results on one site incase you ever wonder what was your PR for a certain distance or how fast/slow you ran for that race. You can also add friends/rivals and see what races others in your area are doing, so cool. Plus the Athlinks people are super helpful and only a tweet away from solving any issue you may run into.

If you are interested in doing this race in 2019 right now the prices are the lowest they will EVER be. Register in the next 2 days and only pay $60! That is extremely low for a half marathon! I am posting below exactly how affordable prices are for the next week or so for the half marathon and the 5k option. So hurry so you can get your 3-0-5 medals and oh if you somehow missed this race but want the whole set of medals you can purchase your 3 medal when you register for the 0 in 2019!

305 savings