Thursday, February 7, 2013

Jeff’s First Half Marathon

Yep, you read that title RIGHT!

During the summer Olympics I was so pumped up with the track and field events that I did something slightly crazy for me…I signed Jeff and I up for our first half marathon. 

Fast forward a few months when we found out that I was pregnant.  I made the {so sad} decision to back out of half training, but my wonderful husband decided to push forward on his own.  He took about a month off of running but started again in January (yes, only 1 month before the race). 

We picked the Surf City Half in Huntington Beach mostly because the reviews said it was an out and back that was relatively flat.  We knew the weather would be cool since it was by the beach and the view pretty awesome. 

We headed down to the expo Saturday afternoon to pick up Jeff’s packet.  Our good friends Jack & Cari were also running the half – this was Cari’s first too!  They live super close to the beach so we lucked out with a free place to crash for the evening. 



The expo is pretty small considering how large the race is (approximately 17,000 half runners).  We picked up everyone’s bibs and Jeff got a new pair for shoes (for after the race) and I bought some of my favorite headbands.  Seriously, love those things. 

We ate at La Fogata for dinner and ended up crashing pretty early Saturday night.  We set our alarm for 5:30am the next morning and woke up bright and early.  I was soooo excited for all of them but I tried to tone it down since I wasn’t the one doing the hard work. 

We left the house close to 6:45am and lucked out with some valet parking at the Hyatt.  We parked smoothly, visited the restrooms and headed down to the start so they could line up. 

I left the 4 of them (Cari’s friend Molly ended up running in my place so Cari wouldn’t be alone) to find a good spot at the start to catch them all.  First were the wheelchair racers-they were amazing!  And then it was the elites. 



I found one of the Oiselle ladies early on.  Head up, wings out!


Soon it was Jeff’s wave and I caught the four of them going by.  Sorry for cutting off Jeff’s head in the video, I put my hand up to high five him.  Smile

While the 4 of them were running up and down Huntington I had some time to kill.  I was tracking them on my phone so at any given point, I knew exactly where they were on the route.  (LOVE THAT!)  I follow some bloggers who were also running either the marathon or half so I made my way over to the finish line chute to try to catch them coming in.  I saw had a front row seat to see some wacky costumes.  One guy was dressed in a body suit with a tux painted on hit. 


Another guy had a Hawaiian tourist costume. 


I only found one blogger who I follow, Sarah from OUaL


By now my tracker was telling me that Jeff was coming up on Mile 12 so I made my way closer to the finish line to cheer him in. 

About 5 minutes later I caught Cari and Molly coming in.  I don’t think Cari heard me but at the last minute Molly saw me and raises her hand.  Molly was also wearing a bright neon orange top that was the EASIEST thing to spot in a crowd.  Spectators: force your runners to wear bright colors, it makes a difference finding them!!

I walked along the finish line chute following C & M.  I saw Jeff and Jack waiting for the girls and we were all able to reunite pretty quickly.  Immediately after, Jeff said his legs started to cramp and all he wanted to do was head home.  He passed up FREE beer he was that much in pain.  We took one more pic before heading back to the car. 

All my half marathoners after the race! 


Jeff’s official finishing time – 2:28:25


I thought that after that pain Jeff would be done with halfs – he’s more a tri guy.  But no.  The Surf City is one of 3 “Beach Cities” Halfs that you can complete in one season.  You finish all 3 halfs and get a special medal. 

Guess what we are doing our anniversary weekend, our last anniversary alone without a kid…