Yes, I ran it. My second half marathon. I know I owe you a post on my first one but this one was this past weekend and I figure I’d better post about if before it gets away from me like the first one did.
I live in the Bay Area but that hike to SF is no joke. So to go over there and pick up my race bib then go over there again the next morning for a 6:15am start time, just the thought was stressing me out. So I whined.
But my race buddy wasn’t having it. We were gonna suck it up and do the back and forth thing. Then I remembered a post on our local Black Girls Run page – a runner was visiting from ATL and offering to share a hotel room in SF. So I reached out to her and bam – we had a place to stay, and a new friend.
The next thing was to check into the hotel -OMG what a cute little artsy spot, Hotel Zeppelin. I’m in love! Unfortunately being the eve of the race we didn’t take advantage of the complimentary wine, but this was one cozy little spot that served it’s purpose perfectly and made us feel at ease not having to worry about driving in the morning.
After getting settled into our room we ventured out for dinner. Sometimes when you live in a place you forget how awesome it is to those who come from all over the world to experience it. This little staycay was an opportunity to renew our appreciation for SF.
We took a brief walk from the hotel and ended at a restaurant highly recommended by the hotel valet – E&O Kitchen and Bar.
Described as Asian fusion, I didn’t find the rice and veggies I was expecting for a perfect pre-run meal, but the food was delish.
The next morning we got up bright and early, no, dark and early (3:50am) to head to the start line. One bonus – because I’m so slow I got an invitation to start running before 6:30 to make sure I finished before they had to re-open the Golden Gate Bridge. I’m wise. I took took the invitation.
At about mile 2, I stopped to take a selfie. That’s when I lost my run buddy. LOL.
Then shortly after that I encountered this group that looked just like Deee-Lite. I love me some Deee-Lite. Of course I HAD to get a photo.
There was a mad dash for the bridge because we had to cross it before 7:45. I’m guessing that’s why my run buddy left. Me and my selfie addiction. Oh well. 🙂
The race got a bit emotional as we approached the bridge. The course was lined with flag wavers in honor of those in public and armed service who lost their lives in the line of duty. Countless photos of slain heroes were present. It was beautiful and sad at the same time.
Finally I reached my goal of crossing the bridge and without getting rerouted to the short cut. I must say I’m proud.
When I crossed the bridge on the way back I looked around and saw NOBODY in front or behind me, not one runner. Then I spotted a race volunteer who informed me that I was the last runner to make it before they rerouted all the other runners behind me to a shortcut so they could re-open the bridge. Somehow I missed that. Guess I was busy taking pics. Whew. For a minute I thought I was off course. LOL!
I signed up for the SF Rock n’ Roll half marathon to get a chance to cross the bridge AND get a medal for doing so. I got so much more than that. What a sense of accomplishment to go literally from bed to half marathon. What an opportunity to make new friends. And what bragging rights to say yes, I ran across the Golden Gate Bridge.
Finally, after nearly 4 hours of running, jogging, walking, stretching, singing, dancing, limping, and photo taking, I crossed the finish line. I stopped looking behind me at about mile 11 because I was convinced I was dead last. But to my surprise, when walking back to the hotel, almost 45 minutes after finishing the race, there were people STILL approaching the finish line. Hey, all that matters is that you cross the line, and if at all possible, cross it upright.
To conclude our SF staycay we had a post-run meal at Farmer Brown because I love catfish and grits, especially theirs.
I’ve heard people say that during a half marathon you swear you’ll never do it again. So far I’ve not felt that way. I find myself planning the next one while I’m actually in the middle of a run. Call me crazy but I think the newness of physically accomplishing something other than walking is just really exciting to me.
What’s your experience with running? Are you doing it? Interested? Or is that just not something you think you’ll ever do unless you’re running from danger? This is my 3rd big run and I do recommend it, hills and all. 2017 Registration for this race is open right now and deeply discounted.
My next run is Run Like a Diva SF. You won’t cross the bridge with this one, but you won’t have to deal with hills either. Who’s in?? What are you waiting for? Get that bling girl! Register here, and I’ll see you there!