Well the third time is a charm as they say. I have to say that the highlight of my spring is heading down to Oak Island in April for a weekend with the family. Not only is this run very fun and challenging, it’s a great first half marathon for anyone wanting to try it.
Packet pickup last year was at the Chamber of Commerce building. This year they decided to have it at the airport. It was a little hard to find for any out of town runner like myself but I found it. My wife has a great sense of direction. The T-shirts this year are way better this year then last. They fit way better. I actually ordered a 2X cause I thought it was going to be like last years tight fitting shirts.
I was a little worried going into this race cause I had pulled a muscle in my back on Wednesday and then pulled it again on Friday morning at crossfit. So I was in pain. I took some anti inflammatory pills and was feeling better but was I feeling 13.1 miles better?
The morning of the race I was feeling confident. This was my third year running this race. I was a seasoned vet at this point. The race moved locations and now no longer required you to run over that big bridge but now required you to run to the NC Baptist Assembly and then turn around and come back.
The buzzard went off and the race began. I kept a slow pace to the mile one marker as always so the crowd would start to thin. So many people this year. This race has grown so much in popularity over the years. Then I moved to my 8 minute pace and stayed there. I could feel my body getting comfortable with my pace. I smiled and I knew at the 3 mile marker that this was going to be my race.
I ran faster and stronger then ever before. I stopped at ever water station and walked as I drank my water and then resumed my race like a boss. Soon I coming close to the turn around at mile 7 and it felt like forever for me to get there. Finally I reached it and I knew that now was the last phase of this race. I had to keep it together.
On the way back I saw all the people I passed. They looked tired as I felt. I cheered them in as I passed them. Soon I was back in the residential area around the end of mile 8 and I knew I was almost done. Residents crowded along the streets with signs and yelling for us to have a great race. I was having the best race of my life.
Soon I was on the way back to the road closest to the beach. I released I was on mile 12 and this was most over. I texted my wife and barley said “1mile left”. That was how it looked. They say the last mile is the hardest in any race and they are right. It seemed that mile took forever.
Soon the finish line was in sight and I made it. My wife and kids greeted me and they handed me my find her medal which was a huge margarita glass.
I loved the new course and the fact that I walked away from this race with a new PR for a half marathon. The medal is not an ideal finisher medal but great for a Jimmy Buffet themed race.
After the race I changed clothes and we grabbed some taco and rode to Carolina Beach and got donuts at the magical place called Britt’s Donuts.
Great weekend and a great race!
Now on to the next race…The Mother’s Day 5k!