Since I have never run a marathon in my hometown, I decided it was about time to run a race in my old stomping grounds. Fortunately for me, Best Damn Race holds a race about 2 miles from my parent's house. Can't get too much closer to home than that. Cape Coral is in South Florida, about 7 hours south from where I currently live. The race was a good excuse to take a weekend drive down and visit the family.
The expo was held in a field adjacent to what would be the starting line. Thankfully, the weather was nice. Otherwise, it may have made packet pick-up difficult. On the upside, I was able to bring the dogs to packet pick-up. With my packet in hand, I headed back to my parents house to relax.
Race Day - 12/13/15
Well rested and ready to run!
It was very nice only having a 3 minute drive to the starting area. (Yes I could have walked the few miles, but I wanted to stay fresh for the race.) I hung around race village for a few minutes, then made my way to the corrals. The marathon and half marathon course are the same, with the marathoners enjoying a second loop. Since I had just finished Space Coast a couple of weeks previous and the weather was going to be brutal again, I planned to run/walk an easy pace and enjoy the day.
And we're off!
Most of the race ran through neighborhoods I was very familiar with.
Best Damn Cheerleader!
My lovely DisneyBride brought me cold Gatorade, ice, and snacks along the course. Magnus offered me enthusiastic barks and slobbery kisses.
Mission accomplished! The weather turned out to be even more brutal than I had expected. My Garmin recorded temps at 93 degrees. Following the race, I wanted nothing more than to get back to my parents house and jump into the pool to cool off.
Pretty solid finish line pic.
I did manage to finish within about 2 minutes of my PR. Eventually, I want to have an opportunity to run a marathon with close to ideal temps. My luck, it will be at Disney, when I just want to take pictures with characters and hop on rides! Ha!
I am hot! Really, I am very hot! It was 90+ degrees.
- The aid stations were well manned. Special recognition to the volunteers from Cape Coral High School! Once a Seahawk, always a Seahawk.
- Flat course.
- Well marked course.
- Ice on the second lap. This was great to help keep the beverage in my polar bottles cold.
- The finish line had plenty of food and beer. Pollo Tropical is a South Florida chain of cuban style food. Beans, rice, plantains, roasted chicken. They had much so that my Wife, Mother, and Grandmother were all offered food to take home.
- Finish line beer. Cold and delicious, the perfect finish line beverage. They also had a hard root beer, I tried a couple of sips. It was just too sweet for me.
- I'm going to call her the 'tutu volunteer'. A woman with a boa and a colorful tutu was cheering on runners at about the 1.5 mile mark. She was beyond upbeat, not only first thing in the morning, but just as excited and cheerful at the completion of my second lap. Thank you awesome volunteer!
- Free race photos. Yep, no paying extra for photos.
- Super Hot. Not the race's fault, just an observation.
- Not enough volunteers to manage traffic from side streets. Too many drivers going far too fast, far too close to runners.
- Nuun. This is more a preference issue. I don't think Nuun has enough calories for me. I also seem to remember that the website advertised a different beverage (Note: I can't find this now. Perhaps, I remembered wrong.)
This might be my favorite pic of the day. Ben and Magnus rode with DisneyBride in the car and were my furry cheerleaders. They had air conditioning. I didn't. Life ain't fair.
To continue with my fairly aggressive race schedule - I have a half marathon on Jan 3 - my last longer distance race before Dopey Challenge.