Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Santa Hustle Half Marathon Race Report

The Santa Hustle race information showed up about 2 months ago on my facebook feed and I was so excited about it!  I signed up right away and tried like hell to get my friends to sign up too.  It is a new race series with a 5K and Half Marathon option.  You get a red sweatshirt, santa beard and santa hat as part of your race swag.  Christmas music and cookies would be found on the course.  I thought for sure I could get a bunch of friends to go with me and dress up.

But no one did.  It's a gimmic-y, costume-y, silly kind of race like the Color Run but there was a half marathon option which IMO made it more legit.  I still couldn't get anyone to bite.

Whatever.  I was going to go anyway and have fun all Santa-like without them.  Even though I am a grinch.

As the date got closer, I found that my friend Jim, was coming and he was going to help me get my sub-2.  Yay!  Then the week before the race I got my hometown running buddy to sign up, and another one from home and then all of a sudden there were tons of people I knew who were going!  All of who were on a mission to get me under 2 hours.

The race was supposed to start at 7:00 a.m. which was perfect other than I had to get up at 4:15 to get ready.  It's still pretty damn dark at 4:15, in case you were wondering.  I got dressed and headed over to pick up my local running buddy, Stacey.  She so kindly snapped a pic of me buying my pre-race fuel so that she could make fun of me on facebook.

don't be hating on the xmas outfit.  I rock the candy cane skirt.

Stacey refused to dress up and wear the red tights and tutu I had for her.  She did agree to the santa hat so there's that at least.

They had all kinds of xmas crap set up once we got there.  Inflatable snowman, inflatable reindeer, actual reindeer, candy and of course Santa Hustle gear to purchase.  

We walked around checking stuff out and met up with our group.  We started out in the 8 minute mile area but looked up to the 6 minute mile area and there was no one.  So we went there instead.  Cause that's how we roll.

Everyone I was running with was faster than me, but they were all either training or just taking it easy today so the mission was SUB 2 FOR MICHELLE.  I have to say, it was pretty awesome having my own pacing team.

 pre-race with Leslie photobomb!

The group posing is the group from Boothbay Harbor.  We also had a Mrs. Claus and Buddy the Elf running with us that somehow missed this photo.
best costume ever!  people kept yelling, "I hope you find your dad, Buddy!"  The irony is he's never seen the movie..... hahaha

And I also ran into my other running buddy, Leslie, who ended up finishing SUPA FAST in like 1:35 or something like that.  Whatever.  It's her stupid long legs... she has an unfair advantage.

The race was supposed to start at 7:00 but finally got going around 7:15.  I guess there was a traffic accident or something that the police needed to deal with first.  At 7:00 a.m. on a Sunday.  Weird. The temperature was perfect to start, probably in the 30's?  Something like that.  A bit cool but perfect for once you got going.

Mile 1:  8:31
Mile 2:  8:27
Mile 3:  8:33
Mile 4:  8:42
Mile 5:  8:42
Mile 6:  8:44
Mile 7:  8:56
Mile 8:  9:01
Mile 9:  8:53
Mile 10:  9:03
Mile 11:  8:57
Mile 12:  8:53
Mile 13:  8:49
.1:  :45

Total Garmin time:  1:54:58
Bib time: 1:55:00

131/466 overall finishers.  71/341 females.  11/56 in my age group.

This is BY FAR, my strongest race ever.  I felt great the entire race.  My splits were all pretty even and I never once needed to stop, I never got a cramp, felt tired, wanted to die... not even once.  This is the first time that I could ever even believe for a moment that I might, just might, be able to finish a marathon.

The whole race, I ran at a pace where I could (and did!) hold a conversation.  I never felt winded or out of breath.  I really feel like if I had wanted to step it up a bit, I certainly could have.

The race course itself, was pretty ugly and boring.  It was around the mall area in Portland and near the airport so there was some traffic and noise and nothing really worth seeing.  However, the course was flat so that probably contributed to the ease of this race for me and honestly, people did not sign up for this race for a pretty view on the course.  It was all about the santa costumes in this race!

I love this photo!

At the finish there was the usual water and bananas, but also mini M & Ms  yessssssss! and cookies! We got a cool santa medal as well.

All in all, I really enjoyed this race!  It was well organized for being a first time race here in Maine, there was good swag, good snacks, a medal, a PR, and perfect weather day--really just a great race overall.  There was plenty of parking, porta potties, volunteers and police support.  The only thing that was a little annoying was that the sweatshirts were really tiny!  I mean like a ladies M fit my 11 year old daughter who weighs 80 lbs......  I haven't tried it on, but really, it's pretty dang small.  But if that's the only complaint, well, I suppose the race is a winner!

If you get a chance to do a santa hustle in your area, I would totally sign up for it.

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