Sunday, July 13, 2014

Drop 13 Half Marathon

Drop 13 was held Saturday, June 14th, 2014 in Big Cottonwood Canyon.  It was organized by On Hill events.

On Thursday I got an email with all the details and electronic information. It was all advertisements for other races.  There were more race details on their Facebook page.

Packet pick up was held at Wasatch Running Company.  Since I already got all the electronic stuff I just had to get my bib number and shirt.  They didn’t have the usual packet extras I’m used to from other races such as the free pain relief, gel packet, or coupon for free food, etc.  I walked into the store, picked it up, and walked out in a matter of minutes.  The shirts are just normal running tech shirts, nothing special.

Race day I got up super early to get to the finish line.  I was on the second bus up.  Because I was so early I got to sit inside Silver Fork Lodge.  It was cold up the canyon and I was glad to be  inside where it was warmer.  When I walked out of the lodge a few minutes before start time there were people all over shivering and trying to stay warm.  The few minutes I stood outside waiting for the bathroom and to wait at the start line, I was cold.  Once I started running I started warming up quickly.

The race started on time and we were off.  It started really early because they closed the canyon for part of it.  As people spread out then cars were allowed to come through.  It was nice to not worry too much about traffic.  The course was all downhill. All the miles except the last two that were in the canyon.  The course was beautiful in the canyon.  It was nice and shady with a slight breeze and very scenic.  At times I was amazed at all the beauty around me.

The aide stations were filled with enthusiastic volunteers. If you volunteer then they give you a $50 credit for another one of their races.  There was water and gatorade to refuel with.  On the website it said that there was gel packets at aide stations, but I never saw any.

There were very few on course port-a-potties.  There were huge lines at the spots that had porta-a-potties.  I saw tons of runners going off course behind trees instead of waiting in line.  They definitely needed more on the route.

When I reached the finish line I was so happy to be done. The constant downhill was killing my knee and I was ready to rest.  The finish line was in a very small area in a parking lot and there wasn’t really anywhere to sit down and stretch.  After race support consisted of a 1/3 banana and 1/4 PB&J sandwich with a little cup of water.  With not much going on, I figured it was time to collect my medals and head home.

Yes, I said medals.  Not because I was super fast and placed in a top three.  The best thing about this race was that they rewarded you for completing the race, if you dropped 13 pounds while training, and if you had a PR on the race.  But this race was so fast with so many getting their best times that they ran out of PR medals.  I was really happy with my time since it was my first half since having my baby this winter and was surprised when I got a PR.  When I went to collect my PR medal and they were out I was upset to not take it home with me.  I got on the list to have one mailed to me and am waiting for it to come in the mail (yes a month later and still no medal or contact).  I’m hoping it comes soon so I can add it to my medal board.

I had really high expectations for this race and was a little disappointed.  I loved getting so many  medals and the course was beautiful and fast.  Other than that I wasn’t very impressed.  I would give it 3 running shoes.

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