Saturday my husband and I ran the inaugural Snohomish River Run Half Marathon. The race was advertised as FAST and FLAT; since we know the race director and know she does things right when it comes to putting on a race, how could we resist?
As I posted on Facebook, you know you are a crazy runner when you sign up for a race in the fall or winter in the Northwest. All week leading up to the race, we watched the weather forecasts, getting encouraged when it looked like it might be dry and discouraged when rain kept popping up as the forecast for Saturday. Even Friday evening, the forecast was "showers," which could mean we'd get a little window of dry weather for the race. Alas and alack, it was not to be; by the time the race started at 8:45 a.m., a light rain had started. Here we are smiling and only slightly damp before the start:
We don't look too bad there, just a little damp. By the time the race was over, however, we looked a bit more like drowned rats. I know, I just saw the race finish photos!
The race course was indeed flat, as flat as anything in the area, and I'm sure if we had been training properly, it could have been a PR for both of us. We haven't been out for a run longer than 3-4 miles in probably a good month, though, so I was a little concerned how we would do; I figured at worst, we would have to walk more than usual. As it turned out, though, we did fairly well. While not our best time, we finished in 2:53:11--exactly the same time as what I did in the Whidbey Island half (to the second!) and only 8 minutes slower than my fastest half.
One of the best things we took away from this half (besides the cool medal, that is!) is that we found using a wool base layer works remarkably well in the rain. We broke the cardinal rule for races: never try something new on race day. We had just bought wool base layer bottoms for both of us, and after trying them on to make sure there were no potential chafe spots, we opted to wear them for this race. Wool is one of the best insulators, wet or dry, and we thought these would work well in damp, cold weather.
Best. Decision. Ever.
I wore mine with a running skirt, and my legs never felt cold or wet in spite of the rain. It's always a balancing act for me to stay warm enough while waiting to run and then not get overheated once I get going. The wool was perfect for that; I just wish I had had a wool top under my race shirt! I had a long sleeve tech shirt (from another race) underneath the race shirt and a rain jacket on top, but between sweating and the rain, my top was not nearly as comfortable as my legs.
Next up: RAGNAR LAS VEGAS! I can't believe that it's coming up so soon (next week!); I've been so busy at work, I haven't had time to do much beyond the bare minimum, so the time off is much needed. I'm very glad that we scheduled our flights to have a day in the area to relax and rest before Ragnar begins; I may just spend that whole day sleeping!