The inaugural running of the Niagara Falls Women's Half Marathon was today. After a hilly PB in Edmonton, and realizing the relative ease I was having running at the lower altitude in Southern Ontario, I decided to sign up for the NFWHM at the deadline, and booked a flight in time to pick up my race kit. It was a cool, overcast, breezy day, perfect conditions for a run and a new PB! Long story short, as summed up by a good friend of mine, there was an early start time (I was up at 4:45 to get there), plus jet lag as I only arrived from Edmonton yesterday, but at least for once I didn't overdress. I'm thrilled with this time, another 6 minutes off the already much improved PB I ran in Edmonton this April. The flat course and low altitude surely helped! I don't expect to see this time again, so I might have to frame this one.
The race was really well supported, with few issues. Getting everyone into the public parking area was the only hitch (and they advised us that they have a plan already in place for next year), so the race started 15 minutes later than scheduled. We ran from the Rapidsview parking area of Upper Rapids Blvd, north to pass the falls, then back south along the Niagara River, past the falls again, and 10k up the river before turning back at the 14k point to return to the start/finish line. It covers a gorgeous, iconic route; hopefully the so-called swag bag will be a bit swaggier in the future, and all finishers received a medal with the profile of runners passing the horseshoe falls.
For me, I finished with a time of 1:46:26, 8/184 in the F40-44 category, and 42/1013 among all the ladies (there were 8 men in the race as well). I'm absolutely thrilled with this time! I would definitely recommend this run for anyone looking for a flat, scenic course and an excuse to visit Niagara.
Great changes yet to come in 2012! Updated my ticker to a new maintenance goal weight of 136, and will flip back to the maintenance ticker when I get there.
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