Marion Rotary Marathon For Shoes, Full, Half, Relay, & 5k. Recap for the Half.
Sunday April 13, 2014. Marion, IA. Cloudy, rainy, 60 degrees. 7am
Registration: Available online and at the expo. Price increased from $30 to $50 at packet pick up. Included as part of entry, long sleeve tech shirt, chip timing, medal at the finish, swag bag with flyers & samples.
Expo: Saturday April 12 from 10-5. I did not attend this, as it was possible to have someone else to pick up your packet. I do know that it was not near the start/finish of the race, but at a completely different location. After the expo the site hosted a pasta dinner.
Pre-Race: The start / finish was near a high school, so there was plenty of free parking for everyone. Port-o-potties were few, but available. The start was a couple blocks from the parking lot. Once to the starting area there were pacers for the full only and no corrals. The national anthem was played, and the race was underway.
Race: The course was on paved surfaces, combination of cement & asphalt. It went out through the county, passing farms, where you could see for miles, then snaked through some residential neighborhoods. Spectators were few & far between. Each mile was marked. The full marathon split was easily identified. Water & Gatorade stops were abundant, served in paper cups, each drink in same color cup. Volunteers shouted which beverage they had. The volunteers at each stop were very encouraging. One orange slice stop. The course had some hills, but nothing steep. There was a timing mat for the half way point split. Port-o-potties on the course. I did not see any photographers on the course. No course entertainment. Finish on the high school track marked with inflatable arch and clock. After across the finish line a medal was handed to you, then a bottle of water and a mylar blanket. Checked my Garmin, 13.36 miles.
Post Race: After finishing, the chute was a 200 meter walk on the back side of the track, then you had to cross the runners path into the food tents. Bananas, oranges, cookies, water, Gatorade & chocolate milk. Massage was available at no cost. Finishers could see times posted on concourse of the stadium. Could also join spectators in the stands to watch finishers.
Overall: My judgement of this race is clouded by the fact that I ran the entire course with one of my best friends. I had a great time talking and laughing the whole way, it didn’t feel like a race to me. However after talking with my husband, he says he will never run a long race in Marion again because it was so boring. Looking back if I had to run it alone, I would agree that the scenery and course was boring. I couldn’t imagine running the full. The race is organized well, could have had a few more port-o-potties near the start, great running surface, well supported, and not too hilly. I like to run local races, so if you haven’t run Marion I would recommend doing it at least once, maybe with a friend.
Personal: I didn’t run my fastest, but I ran progressive miles. Laura keeps me going! Josh and I also used the race as part of a training run for our upcoming marathon. The weather was interesting, it rained just before the gun went off, then it stopped, rained at about mile 4, then stopped, sun came out, was humid, then clouded back up at mile 10, got in car and rained the rest of the day; it’s why I train in all conditions. My tendonitis flared up, iced it on the way home. .
Ang: 2:09:06 Results