Sunday October 20, 2013. Overcast 40 degrees. Iowa City, IA
The Run for the Schools race is a fundraiser for the Iowa City School district. There were kids races, a 5K, 10K and the half marathon. The half marathon was also part of “Iowa’s longest marathon“. Which is why I was running, to complete my medal. I ran the Ronald McDonald Half Marathon in May for the first part.
Note: Years ago I ran the 5k, when I crossed the finish in a clump of people, I was told it wasn’t important to stay in finishing place as our times weren’t important. I was hesitant to return to this organization’s race. Everyone runs their own race, never tell them they are not important.
Registration: I registered back in April, online, as it was part of the longest marathon. It was affordable as two half marathons were $70, or $35 each. There were also flyers posted around town to send in registration via snail mail
Packet Pick up / Expo: Since I registered so long ago, I couldn’t recall where I needed to go to get my stuff. After a search of the website, I found a link to the brochure I could download with the information. The pickup was held the day before at the rec center. You could pick up others packet’s without problem. A t-shirt was included with entry. I believe this was the first year for an expo, many local groups set up around the gym. Nice, friendly atmosphere.
Pre-Race: Josh and I ran to the race, however there is on street parking around the downtown area for free. If you are not from the area you might have trouble finding a spot. The one mile kids race was held. National anthem was sung, but problems with speakers prevented me from hearing it all.
Race: The 5k, 10k, and half all started at the same time. Gun timed, no chips, no corrals. It was hard to position yourself in the start with the variety of races. It was the width of the street so that helped.
The three races continued on the same course, it wasn’t until after mile 2 the 5k split away, and then the turn around for the 10k was after 4 miles. Once the race was down to only the half, the course was on/off sidewalks and street.
Encountered a pissy lady who yelled “I have to get somewhere” I in return yelled “Cry me a river!” I guess she couldn’t see there was a road race happening.
Course was mostly paved surface. Had to pay attention for cracks and holes. Out and back. Fairly hilly, nothing to bad. Volunteers or law enforcement at every intersection. Lots of water stops, some with Gatorade, all in paper cups. Gatorade and water were in same colored cups, volunteers would yell which drink option they had. Not a lot of spectators, but the few that were out and about, were vocal.
The finish was clearly marked with a banner over the street and the race clock. The finishers chute was narrow, and they grabbed the bottom strip off the bib to record your place. The medal was placed around my neck and was handed a bottle of water.
Post Race: There was cookies, bagels, bananas, chocolate milk and oranges available. you could also wait in line to get a massage.
Overall: Fair course, no chip timing, difficulty finding information and the lack of community support has me considering other races during this time next year. Not a bucket list race. *However talking with a race board member, I am excited for the coming years, so who knows I may run this again.
Personal: As you know I am in training for the Disney Dopey Challenge. I am also just over a month out from my last marathon. Just before this race a pain developed behind my right knee in a muscle, I also have PF in that foot and on the left foot my collapsing arch had reared it’s head. I was just going to be happy to finish. I hadn’t ran for 3 days prior to the race. *Currently waiting to get into PT.
The 2 miles we ran to the race felt good, we needed to have 16 miles for the training that day.
I started the race running with my friend Laura. My leg finally felt like a dead weight at mile 11, and I couldn’t keep up with her any longer. I did however finish my 11th half in my second fastest time, 2:08:49. I also ran in costume, I recommend this to everyone, especially on a course where there are few spectators, all of them you encounter will cheer for you, I had so much fun.