Considering that I ran this race almost a month ago, I would say this post is a tad over-due. The bf did his recap a looooong time ago. You can read it here and perhaps it will help fill in the parts that I am a bit fuzzy about. (Note to self: Don’t wait one month to write a race recap.)
I was originally signed up to run the half but decided to change to the 5.7 mile run because I wasn’t trained properly and it was rumored to be a tough course. It turned out to be a good decision on my part, so go me!
Just like the Kona Chocolate Run, the race was forecasted to have less than ideal weather with cold temps, wind and rain. The morning of the race the bf and I took a ferry from Mackinaw City to the island. There were a ton of runners waiting to ride the same ferry so we were happy that we arrived when we did although it appeared that the ferry line added an additional boat once ours got full.
At this point in the day it was already cold and windy so the ride over to the island was a bit rocky but not awful. We got on the island with enough time to visit the shops before we picked up our packet.
Packet pick up was busy but uneventful. The starting area was a bit unorganized and chaotic, however Chris and I did get to the area at the very last-minute so I guess we are partly to blame. It just seemed that spectators were blended in with the runners so there was no clear indication where we were supposed to go. We did eventually get into place and even got to help sing the National Anthem. According to the announcer, they way they do it on the island is to have the runners sing it without a dedicated singer or a recorded version being piped in. Works for me.
Once the race started Chris and I immediately got separated. We knew it would happen so it wasn’t a surprise as we planned to run our own race and meet up at the finish.
The first hill of the race was almost immediately after crossing the start line. It was a HUGE hill. San Francisco sized even. (Ever since I ran the Nike Half in San Fran, this is how I size up hills. You haven’t ran a hill till you have run one in San Fran.) After that hill we went into the woods and spent several miles on trails with many small rolling hills. Being in the woods was nice because it shielded us from the wind and because of which the weather was actually perfect!
About mile 3 we came out of the woods and back onto the pavement. The remainder of the race was flat and paved. This section also ran alongside the water so the views were amazing! We also ran by arch rock twice. Once before the woods and once before the finish line.
Near the finish line there were a good amount of spectators but the rest of the course didn’t really have any, which was fine by me. Once I crossed the finish line, I got my awesome turtle medal!
It is definitely one of my favorites!
Not long after I crossed the finish line the bf crossed as well. I finished in 59:53 and Chris finished in 1:08:35.
We spent some more time on Mackinaw Island and then took the ferry back to Mackinaw City. The ride back was super scary! We were being tossed all over the place to the point where I even felt sick to my stomach. Blech. It was super windy so it wasn’t the fault of the ferry line.
Other than the unusual ferry ride, I would highly recommend this race. Great course, awesome medal, nice shirt and great post race food. It is a must do!