I decided to do the Lake Lowell HM after the race company, Final Kick Events, contacted our chapter with a discount code. Let me say from the beginning, this is not a barefoot friendly race. Most of the course is rough chip seal. But as some of you may remember, I run in Luna Sandals and am not a barefooter.
Race morning brought cool temperatures (about 40f) and wind. And I don't mean a little breeze but kick your butt wind. Yuck. I agonized over what to wear for two days prior to the race. I finally decided on my kilt (with shorts under), long-sleeved tech shirt with short-sleeved over top, ear band, ball cap and gloves. Turns out I chose just right. I brought toe socks in case I wanted them, but it turns out I brought two right footed socks. So, no socks. It worked out just fine without but it would have been nice to have them going back and forth to the registration area and bathrooms.
We started right on time at 0900. I played tag with quite a few folks doing walk intervals for the first few miles. One lady passed me and commented on my sandals saying she was impressed. It made me smile.
This is an out and back course that started downhill. It was all on roads with traffic whizzing by. There were some pretty good hills, but the ascents were gradual so they weren't bad. Most of the run was through the country with many farms adjacent to the road. I think I only saw the lake about three times.
When I was almost to the halfway (turnaround), I was running with a young gal and a we saw a young girl about 10 that had already made the turnaround. I commented that I hated it when little kids kicked my butt. Actually, I love seeing the kids out there but was surprised one so young was doing the HM. I ran past the turnaround to the porta potty, only to find it occupied. Oh well. It was good not to have a headwind anymore.
From miles 7 to 9, I ran with the same young gal. It turns out this was her first HM and she was my daughter's age. We had a nice chat. I lost her at a water stop as I carry my own. Too bad, I enjoyed chatting with her. I took some organic baby food (sweet potato/apple) at this point. It tasted really good. I finally got an unoccupied porta potty at mile 10.
Cruised along pretty well until mile 12 or so. The last mile is so long sometimes. I wasn't slogging it out or anything, just ready to be done. Got to the uphill for the finish and could have passed another lady but held back in the chute. I not a racer and a few seconds wouldn't have changed anything for me. I just felt like it would have been bad form to pass at the last second in a race neither of us would win or lose. This was a good run for me. I felt strong throughout.
The finish area had hot dogs, chips and pretzels to eat, water and powerade in big coolers and about two cases of beer that wasn't in a cooler. I thought it was strange that there was no bottled water to be found. So I mowed down a couple of hot dogs without buns (paleo), had some water and hit the road to come home. You actually drive on the course for a couple of miles when leaving the finish.
I don't think I'd do this run again. I wasn't crazy about the course, finish area food or the shirt. But it was a good run. I'll probably do the Famous Potato HM next on May 17.
Lake Lowell Half Marathon 4/13
Blog entry posted by PB Junkie, Apr 15, 2014.