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That Time I Ran a Half Marathon In Arizona

Posted Jan 24 2013 8:45pm

As my crafty title suggests, this is a post about the time I ran a half marathon in Arizona!

Here is the winning bib number!

Here is the winning bib number!

I ran this race with my running buddy, Molly.  Her older sister lives out in suburban Phoenix, so we crashed with her (thanks, Sarah!). This was my first trip to Arizona and it couldn’t have come at a better time.  It’s FRIGID in Chicago and nice and warm in AZ. It’s amazing what a few days of SUN can do for your mental health!

SUN. PALM TREES. HAPPINESS.

SUN. PALM TREES. HAPPINESS.

Race conditions were pretty ideal.  Upper 40s to start the race and low 70s by the time we slowly finished. It was a lil hot towards the end of the race, but it was 100% better than the last race I ran…

New Years Day 5K in Chicago... it was like 15 degrees.

New Years Day 5K (1.1.13) in Chicago… it was like 15 degrees.

The course started and ended on ASU’s campus, which was pretty cool.  I hail from the cornfields of central Illinois, so I can’t imagine going to school in the middle of the desert. So much different than anything I’ve ever seen.  ANYWAY, back to da race. I hardly trained (I’m in week 3 of training for the Illinois Marathon), so the longest run I did before this race was 6 miles. Ha.  I just went out there for a nice, slow run. No expectations.  It was actually kind of relaxing. No pressure.  Here’s a mini recap, in pics.

Palm trees in the start coral?! Ummmm yes please.

Palm trees in the start coral?! Ummmm yes please.

This was the view while we ran up a hill at mile 9er, which would have sucked if we didn't have that view.

This was the view while we ran up a hill at mile 9er, which would have sucked if we didn’t have that view.

Down hill view wasn't so bad either.

Down hill view wasn’t so bad either.

And the official Garmin results.  I’m probably the fastest person you know!!!  PYSCH.

BLAZING 10:53 min/mi pace!!!!

BLAZING 10:53 min/mi pace!!!!

The day after the race, I hiked my first mountain, South Mountain , outside of Phoenix. We were pretty sore from the race (our Midwestern hamstrings don’t understand hills), but had to live it up while we were out there… so we hiked.

Let me tell you something…. hiking with sore legs is hard. But because I’m so good at sports and all things athletic, it wasn’t thaaaaaat bad. The hardest part was paying attention to the trail because there were so many loose rocks and uneven surfaces.  Probably didn’t help that we didn’t have hiking or trail shoes.  I hiked in my running shoes.  Ha. Idiot.  We hiked up the Mormon Trail, which according to the City of Phoenix’s website , is 1.5 miles (3 miles out and back) with an an elevation change of approximately 1,000ft (which means nothing to me). Again, the weather was perfect (meanwhile it was like -10 in Chicago) and the views were pretty awesome.

Somewhere at the bottom

Somewhere at the bottom

Making our way up

Making our way up

Made it to the top! And we look cute, but...

Made it to the top! And we look cute, but…

This how we really felt

This how we really felt (unintentional pic taken by Sarah)

This was one of the coolest things I’ve done (I don’t get out much) and can’t wait to do it again.  Who knew I was so outdoorsy? Oh and we also found the largest cactus in the history of cacti.

Unreal!!!

Unreal!!!

After we dominated South Mountain, we drove into Tempe to watch the sunset from atop “A” Mountain on ASU’s campus.

That yellow thing is an "A"... for ASU.  Those Sun Devils are so creative, aren't they?

That yellow thing is an “A”… for ASU. Those Sun Devils are so creative, aren’t they?

The sunset was pretty cool – it was my first mountain sunset view.  Nice way to end the trip.

View while looking northeast.

View while looking northeast.

And the southwest view. Not bad.. not bad at all.

And the southwest view. Not bad.. not bad at all.

Then we went home. It was sad.  Arizona is pretty.  Even the airport is pretty.

This was the view while waiting to board the plane. NBD.

This was the view while waiting to board the plane. NBD.

So now I’m back in the tundra. And back to winter marathon training. Maybe sometime I will blog about how my training is going… but until then, goodbye!

 

 

 

 

 


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