Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Green Bay Half Marathon Race Report

Warning***Long Post Ahead***

Finally getting around to writing this report. This was, by far, my favorite race to date! I had an amazing weekend with my family. It was great to be back in that small-town city :)

The Trip:

Husband and I weren't as ready as we thought we were for this trip. I had planned to be all packed and ready to leave when my sister got here Friday. Buuuuuut, a healthy dose of lazy and a large dose of school-time reality prevented me from packing much of anything. So, of course, when Sister got here I was running around like a mad person trying to pack for myself and Bentley, and reminding Husband about what he had forgotten. Oh....and I forgot to mention that we didn't have any power. The small storm that had rolled through that afternoon managed to knock out our electricity. Nothing like packing for a vacation in the dark!

After dropping off Bentley at SIL#1's house we were on the road for a quick 3 hour drive north. After meeting up with my parents at the hotel we grabbed Sister's Boyfriend (referred to hereafter as FBIL-future brother-in-law....they aren't engaged, but it's gonna happen) and headed off to dinner. A quick chow-down at Noodles & Co and we were back to the hotel for a good night's sleep.

*Random side note* The restaurant next to Noodles in Green Bay is known as El Serape. Unfortunately they were also experiencing random power outages just like we were at home. The really bad part is that the power outage only effected certain parts of their sign. So, instead of the sign reading El Serape Mexican Restaurant it read Rape. oops.*

The 5K:

I had talked my parents into walking the 5K on Saturday morning. All races that weekend went through Lambeau Field. My dad is a big Packers fan and I knew he'd really enjoy the lap around the field. The weather was crummy and cold, but we dressed as warm as we could and set off to enjoy ourselves. Husband, Sister, and FBIL were our champion spectators that day. The race was pretty uneventful because we were walking, but that worked well for me because I needed to save my legs for the next day. As we entered the field I made sure I got some great shots of my parents. I even made my dad do the Lambeau Leap!...sort-of. As we came out of the tunnel and rounded the corner for the finish line I was talking them through finish-line poses and decided they should jog in. My mom wanted no part of jogging, but I ended up racing my dad to the finish. We were full out sprinting :) He's such a good sport!

The Expo:

After the race we hit up a rather small expo. I didn't really want anything special from the expo except maybe a shirt. But the official race gear was not very good. So I skipped out on it. I did, however, buy a sweet 13.1 magnet for my car :) I figured that I would have 2 halves under my belt and that would make me legit enough for a car magnet! Husband bought a few packages of sports beans, and he wasn't overly impressed with the expo either.

Our hotel was nothing special. Just a cute little joint out by the airport. We decided to head to the Titletown Brewing Company for dinner. Husband and I went their for our 1-year anniversary a few years back and loved it. They brew a special 26.2 brew every year for marathon weekend and Husband and my dad wanted to try it. I enjoyed their special Snow Cap root beer. (pretty sure it wasn't GF, but oh well.) Amazing salad, great conversation, and then some ColdStone ice cream for dessert. Early to bed for us racers.

The Race:

Weather conditions were decent. Temps were in the 50's. It wasn't raining. But there were 20+ mph. This was going to make running difficult. Again, I was super emotional before we crossed the Start line. This was the second biggest thing I've ever set out to accomplish and again I had Awesome Husband at my side. Super Sister was also with me. This was bound to be a good day. Husband and I kept pace with each other for the first 5 miles. I stopped for a quick bathroom break at that point and quickly lost him. We need to run our own races anyway. I was amazed with how great I felt during this race. Not once did I feel exhausted. Not once did I find The Wall. I was pretty darn impressed!

*Interesting Thoughts While Racing*
- It's nice to run through all these neighborhoods. Watching people as they cheered for us from lawn chairs in their front yards was fun.
- There were lots of great signs:
- "Chuck Norris wouldn't quit!"
- "That guy stole your wallet ---->"
- "We're proud of you total stranger"
- "This wind totally blows!" (ha!)
- "Chuck Norris never ran a marathon!"
- Ran past a house with "Go Bears" signs in the windows. Thought they were very brave to live in Green Bay with such nonsense written on their windows.
- This race isn't as crowded as Chicago. The air even smells better.
- I wish I could eat bratwursts at the end with everyone else. Damn celiac disease.
- Why aren't there more photographers? I look good and someone needs to capture photos of this :)
- Why don't I live here?

At mile 12, the marathoners split off from the halvsies. I yelled and screamed as best I could for those braves souls who were heading off to battle the 20+ mph headwind for 8+miles. Yuck. I also wished quick steps for my sister. Back toward Lambeau we went. Coming through the tunnel I passed Husband on his way out. I surprised him :) He didn't expect to see me. The lap around the field was great. I yelled and screamed to make sure mummy and daddy saw me....they did. I didn't sprint around the final turn because I knew I had a great time already.

I clocked a 2:12:27! Couldn't have been happier!

Final race thoughts: This was awesome! I can't wait until I can train for another year :)

*****Got an e-mail the next day saying that there was a course error. I suspected one when I heard all the GPS watches around me beeping at least .1 before the mile markers. Hmmm. So many people complained that they remeasured the course. Sure enough they had added an extra 800 feet between miles 3 and 4. Oops! This didn't effect me too much except that it did effect all the marathon runners who were aiming for Boston that day. The race directors worked out some formula and called the Boston people. They were able to "correct" everyone's times and qualified a bunch more people who missed their BQ by a matter of seconds because of the measurement error. I just got a more awesome time! The now "official" time for me is 2:10:57!!!!!! Holy heck! I am more awesome than I thought :)*****


Found Husband after the medal, water, and t-shirt pick-up station. We got our photo snapped together. We look hot! Then we found the family and our bags. Got in line for for "beverages" and then made our way to the atrium to warm up. 30 minutes of stretching and photographing later we found a spot in the stadium to watch Sister finish her race. Her time update texts were slowing down and I knew she was struggling. Finally we saw her come through the tunnel. I was a smidgy emotional at this point too. There was my awesome sister. Finishing her second marathon! I wanted to scramble over that wall and run her to the finish. But I was all wrapped up in that silver plastic thing. I would have made a fool of myself and probably gotten in big-time trouble for climbing down stadium walls. Instead I booked back down the steps and made it around the corner just in time to hear the announcer mispronounce her name as she crossed the finish line! Yay sissy :)

All my students asked me if I "won" the next day at school. I laughed. They all wanted to see photos, touch my medal, and hear about the race. I love them.

Now I need to focus my energy on school for the next few weeks. I also need to get a work out plan going. I'm not aiming for major mileage this summer because I'm planning on taking on a passenger....if you know what I mean ;) But I am looking to improve the tone in my arms and abs. Any good workout ideas?

Happy Running!


  1. My students always ask me if I won too. Too funny. Nice job. Love that your time got better! Half marathons are fun. Loved the bit about you and your dad sprinting for the finish too of the 5K.
    I am doing a 3/4 next year because my principal has turned the whole school multi age. Not a choice. Lots of anxiety believe me. Do like my new team though.

  2. Your husband is sooo tall! :) But once again, congrats on an awesome race!!!

  3. My students always ask if I won too! I always say, of course, finishing is winning!

    Great race!!!!!

  4. Aww thanks sissy!! and FBIL is a great nickname :) It was a great day!! Wanna make it a tradition?

  5. um...yes! Wouldn't it be awesome if I could do next year's 5k with a stroller :)