This past weekend I participated in my 6th half marathon in Murfreesboro, known as The Middle Half. The registration for this race opens up four months prior, in June, and fills up in about two hours. It is one of the less expensive half marathons, at just $65 to register. There are several reasons why I like this race. It’s usually good weather, it’s flat, and I always get to see some great friends. It isn’t one of the races with a ton of spectators, but there is good energy from the runners and the small groups of people cheering us on. One other thing I like is that this race is always very organized. Everything from packet pick up, to parking, to easily accessible bathrooms, to race start, and post race food……it is all run very smoothly. This year was no different.
For the last few years I have ran the Women’s Half Marathon two weeks prior to this race. This year they moved the Women’s Half to November, so this was my first marathon since the Franklin Half last June. Fall is my favorite running season, so I look forward to these races. Start time for this race was 7am, but I am always paranoid about being late and running into traffic. I met two of my friends, Ashley and Lindsay, so we could ride together. This was Lindsay’s first half marathon so we were very excited for her! Having four kids makes it tough to get together with friends often, so races are a great time for me to catch up with them. We were really early this year but we sat in the car and drank water, chatted, and ate bananas! When we got there it was still raining a little but stopped before the race started. It was, in my opinion, perfect race weather. It was cloudy, gray, overcast, and about 60 but felt a little cooler because it had been raining. I don’t do well in hot and sunny weather, so I was in heaven with this weather.
I held a pretty even pace this race. I ran the first 7 miles in about a 7:05- 7:10 pace and slowed down a little in the second half. I ended up averaging a 7:19 pace overall and running a 1:35:38 which put me first in my age division! The biggest mistake I made was not bringing dry clothes to change into! WHAT was I thinking?!?! First of all I knew I would be waiting on my friends, the awards, the food, and had an hour drive home! Thankfully Ashley let me borrow her race shirt and the sun came out a little, but man I was cold! A hot shower never felt so good when I finally got one!
They had cold water and towels at the end. They also had cold chocolate milk, which I love after a race. The post race food was pretty good, donut holes, pizza, fruit, muffins, and a few other things. Although I was so cold after I wasn’t that hungry yet! (Don’t worry I made up for it with the cake and pizza I ate that afternoon at a 5 year old’s birthday party!)
I wore my Brooks Glycerin to the race because they never ever let me down! I wore my Nike Tank and a pair of Under Armor shorts, I went with all black this time. (Black is slimming anyway, right?) overall the race was a great experience! It’s a flat, fairly easy course in what is usually good running weather. It was a morning of good friend, good exercise, and good times! I will definitely be back next year!