Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Philly Half Marathon Race Recap 11/23/14

I ran the Philly Half Marathon that took place last Sunday in the "City of Brotherly Run and Sisterly Endurance." It was my first time doing this run and I enjoyed it. I had run in Philadelphia before for their Rock N Roll race but this was different, like a whole different magnitude, just because it was so big. The race offered both a full and half marathon and there were 30,000 runners running on race day.

RACE EXPO: The race expo was held at the Pennsylvania Convention Center and it was big! I found my way to the bib and shirt pickup and it went smoothly. There were lots of booths and people. I did not really need anything but I did browse pretty much by every booth. The most fun to be had was in the kid zone. This was the first time I had seen a section just for kids. It was great because there was an inflatable obstacle course that the kiddos loved. They also had crafts, a balloon artist, face painting, and a free caricature drawing. The kiddos did everything but the face painting and they had a blast. The caricature turned out great too!
Philly Half Marathon Race Expo
Here is a pic of the shirt. I like it! It's not different colored, just the lighting is different when I took the picture of the back. 
Philly Half Marathon Shirt
RACE DAY: The weather wasn't bad. It was 42 degrees when I woke up, so not freezing and that made me happy. Especially because I knew it was just going to get warmer, so I had a feeling it was going to be a great day for a run. The race started at 7:00am so I went downstairs from my hotel room around 6:00am as it was about a mile walk to the start. I think most of the hotel I stayed at (Sheraton) were runners since there were many in the lobby hanging out. I figured I'd hang out inside for a while too if others were doing the same. I didn't leave the lobby until 6:15 or so to walk to the start. From the below pic you can get an idea of the amount of people as this was just heading to the start.
Philly Half Marathon
I was in the gray corral. The half marathon started the same time as the full marathon so the corrals were pretty big and lots of people were in each. I made myself to the front of the gray corral and when our corral got to the start line, Mayor Nutter was there. He is known to give runners high fives, I didn't get one because I was on the other side but I think it's great he's out there supporting runners.

Philly Half Marathon Start & Mayor Nutter
They did a countdown for our corral and then I was off. I felt pretty good. The course was great! I enjoyed how we passed by some cool landmarks. The pic below is of City Hall at around mile 1. 
Philly Half Marathon
I had to get a pic when we were going towards the Benjamin Franklin Bridge. I thought it looked pretty cool especially with the sunlight on the bridge.
Philly Half Marathon Benjamin Franklin Bridge
 Close to mile 5 is where I took this pic of Independence Hall.
Philly Half Marathon
At around mile 6 was my favorite part of the race on Chestnut Street. This was where I saw Hubby and the kiddos. It was brief and fast but they made me smile hearing them cheer for me. Running along that straight away on Chestnut Street in general was amazing because of the crowd support. There were tons of people cheering along most of that street. It was so cool and I felt strong and energized from all the cheering! It was a great adrenaline rush for me! The pic below was taken by Hubby, I'm in the orange shirt.
Philly Half Marathon
The last pic I took while running was along 34th street. This was on our way towards the Zoo. So many runners as far as the eye can see.
Philly Half Marathon
The hills between miles 7-8 and 9-10 were tough but I pulled through. I still felt pretty good. I didn't realize I could actually PR in this run until around mile 11 or so. I tried to pick up the pace, but I just couldn't so I tried to maintain a steady pace. When we made the split right and broke away from the full marathon runners, I knew the finish line was getting near. I passed the Art Museum and headed back onto Benjamin Franklin Parkway to the finish line. I sprinted as much as I could to the finish and was happy when I crossed the line. 

I received my medal a little ways after crossing the finish along with a nice emergency blanket. I got a bottle of water and was good. I didn't bother getting in line for the pretzel and fruit because it was too long. I made my way back to the hotel to see Hubby and the Kiddos.
Philly Half Marathon Finish Area
I did get a nice gentleman to take my picture. As to my time, I found out that I PR'd once I got back to the hotel and checked my time. I PR'd by one second. I'll take it! :)
Overall it was an amazing race. Everything was great from the water stations (although I don't use them because I use my Simple Hydration bottle that I still have yet to put the review on the blog) to the volunteers, and the amazing crowd support. The cheering pulled me through I think to give me the PR. This is a great run and I would totally do it again!

16 comments:

  1. Nice recap. It's amazing that you can snap pics and race to a PR at the same time. Happy running!

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  2. Thank you!!! Yeah, I have it down pretty well where I can take pics while running. :)

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  3. Michelle@Running with AttitudeNovember 26, 2014 at 12:03 PM

    Great job Sharon! Congrats! Philly does put on a great race!

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  4. You kept a great pace and a PR is a PR congrats! I hear great things about this race. It's on my list one year

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  5. Yayyy for the PR! What a nice looking shirt. I think I stayed at the same Sheraton you did (walking distance from the start) for the LOVE Run Philly. It is nice they had a dedicated space for the kiddos at the expo. Great pics too!

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  6. Woohoo, a PR is a PR! Awesome.

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  7. Thanks Michelle!! It was an awesome experience! :)

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  8. Thanks Deborah!! Definitely do it one year, it's a great experience! :)

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  9. Thanks Jenny!! The Sheraton was really nice as they provided free bottled water, fruits and granola bars for everyone. I was thinking about the LOVE Run but it all depends on if I get in to NYC 1/2 or not. :)

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  10. Congrats on the PR! The shirt is nice! Great recap!

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  11. Thanks Sherry! Yeah, the shirt fit nicely and I like the design!

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  12. Wow, awesome job Sharon! You got some great pictures in there too. I'm glad to here the expo was kid friendly. My kids are usually pretty bored when I have to pick up a bib.

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  13. Thanks Michele!! Yes, this was the first time the kids had so much fun at an expo! :)

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