Half Marathon #44 – New Bo

New Bo Run – Half Marathon #44 Recap

The New Bo Run was held on Sunday, September 3 in the New Bohemia area of Cedar Rapids. There is a 10k and a half marathon that are run at the same time. It was sunny, 60 ish degrees and super humid.

I am no stranger to this event, I have run the half marathon in the past. I am also a board member of the running club, Corridor Running, that helps organize the event. That being said, I did pay for my entry – if there are any questions to my thoughts. As part of the club, I help with their social media accounts, and we ran the course a week before the race.

Josh was running this year too, so we woke up early, had the usual toast with peanut butter and all the coffee, then made the 40 ish minute drive to Cedar Rapids. We were tired, but ready to run. The first Iowa football game was the day before, and the Hawks defeated Wyoming 24-3. Go Hawks!

GEAR: neon green Sparkle Athletic skirt, adidas shorts, lululemon shirt, Orange Mud hydraquiver vest pack 1, xx2i France 2 sunglasses, Aftershokz Trekz Titanium, B1G hat, Brooks Ghost 9, Garmin Fenix 3, RoadID, spibelt, Zensah socks

We were able to grab our bib and shirt before the race with no issues. It seemed many others had the same idea, there was a quick moving, short line. The club also had gear available for sale.

Josh and I needed to use the restrooms, and no matter how many port-o-potties a race brings in, it’s never enough. There were 2 banks of them, with one line for each. Now, we could also get in the debate of multiple lines or one line….. but ANYWAY… Josh and I knew there was a Casey’s (convenience store) 2 blocks away. We did a warm up to the store and passed IG friend Jaclyn on the way (she was doing the same.) Ahh, in and out in minutes, great idea Josh.

We ran back to the starting line. Which for this race is not the finish line. It starts a couple blocks away, not a big deal. Runners were starting to line up as a drone buzzed overhead.  The official race photographer roamed, as the National Anthem was sung live.

I actually stood near the start line to take a picture, then went around the starting timer mat, and hopped into the race. There were no corrals, and I didn’t hear an announcement to line up according to time. However, there were about 1000 participants, and the width of a city street, I didn’t feel too congested.

I did hop into line with social media friend Chelsea and BibRave pro Mel. Hey ladies!!! They are troopers, they had just run a half marathon the day before in Madison, WI. I, of course snapped some photos…and began my race.

Going into the race, I didn’t have a huge goal, but I was going to try and push my pace. However, the humidity was tough, and I was taking photos and posting to IG stories and the Corridor Running twitter feed as I went. YEP…that’s me.

Being familiar with the course, I didn’t expect any surprises. However, my watch beeped at mile one and I didn’t see a mile marker flag. HMMM? SO – I later learned that the mile 5 flag went missing last year at the race, and this year the mile 1 and mile 4 flag went missing. SO, if you know where these are, or know anything about this…please return them. This doesn’t help keep costs down for the race, or make our race compare with others if we have to waste time creating mile marker signs because some punk thinks it’s cool to steal. OK end rant!

I will have a “to the point” review at Bibrave.com if that is more your thing.

Ok, back to running the course. I knew there would be a couple port-o-potties near the entrance to the Prairie Park Fishery, about mile 2.5. As as noted above, there are never enough, lol. I didn’t have to use one, but there were some lines. There was also a water stop here. All the aid stations were water only stops in paper cups.

Then it was time for the 2 courses to split, the half marathon to the left and the 10k to the right. There was a sign and a guy standing there with a pool noodle directing runners.

Trotting along – there was another railroad crossing. Yep, this race has railroad tracks on the course. There are trains that will run during the event, you just need to be alert. The race does their best to work with the railroad, but it is what it is.

Just near mile 3, there is the first hill. It’s not a huge hill, but it’s a nice little climb. This takes you on the back road of the race, where there are more rolling hills. The first part of this section are a chip and seal road treatment, allowing for potholes and weird ruts from traffic, but nothing major. It eventually switches to pavement and a gravel shoulder.

There were more water stops and a few spectators out and about with some great signs. Just a nice day for a run through the back roads of Linn County.

At about the halfway point is the entrance to the Sac and Fox trail. There is a timing split mat set up here along with one port-o-potty. Also something to note is the water fountain in this parking area for the trail. The New Bo run dedicated it a few years back from race proceeds.

This trail is one of my favorite parts of the race. It’s an easy trail, really flat, gravel or packed dirt, no need for special shoes, and it’s shady. There is a water stop on the trail just after the one and only gel stop. There is no other food offered on course.

This race is pretty basic, just water and one gel stop. I knew this going in, so I had my OM pack with some orange Gatorade and a granola bar for an emergency. I am ok on some runs of half marathon with no food, and other times I need more than an electrolyte. At about mile 9 I was feeling like I needed something, so I took a bite of my granola bar.

I am not a huge watch “watcher,” meaning I rarely glance to see what pace I am going. I may check to see what mile I am at when it beeps at me. However, a race walker caught up with me, I was amazed at his form and ability to move so quick…. I also noticed that about every 10 steps he was checking his watch… I am still amazed at how he did it. (I eventually kicked it in and crossed the finish before him.)

Coming back around after mile 10, it was the part of the course that re-joins with the first few miles, so the race is an out and back with a loop in the center.

At the point, I was hot and sweaty, but I kept moving as I found my friend Monty. He is training for the Chicago marathon, and said he has since inspired his wife to run some races too. Hope he has a great training cycle, and an even better marathon.

I was approaching the last mile. I knew that there was a slight hill, more of an incline. When you run out on this part, you don’t realize you are running down hill, but you feel that climb on the way back.

I saw the club President, Mark cheering everyone on. Always nice to see friendly faces. Also, the law enforcement officials were still out protecting all the intersections, and before I could tell them thank you, they were cheering too.

I was on the home stretch to the finish line… I could hear the announcer, but he was sharing the results of the 10k, and giving out awards. I am not sure if the faster kids had their names announced as they crossed the finish line.

I crossed the finish line to see the race photographer, hopefully I was looking fly… or on fleek or whatever the kids say these days….. I was handed my handmade ceramic medal, and reusable plastic cup. I then saw Josh.

We waited by the finish line where I saw many other people – as we were waiting for more people to finish. I then had to leave as I said I would help with the apparel sales. I also wanted my post race treats.

Josh stayed at the finish to see Mel and Chelsea. I walked over to the apparel sales and was told they had things under control. So, I went to check out the post race food. No kolaches…. WHAT?!?!?!? I wasn’t that slow, I mean I did hang by the finish line a while, but what? So, did you have more than one? I did grab a veggie breakfast burrito, but it was kinda mushy from sitting in a steamer… so I did what any runner would do… I walked over to get my plastic cup filled with the Lions Bridge Brewing beer – a Workman’s Comp. There were also water coolers available to fill your cup with water too. No plastic bottles.

I finished the race around 2:12

Of course, I would run into another person I know, Matt, and we chatted for a while. Then as I was standing there, I congratulated Dan and his dog Phil as he placed in his AG, I said hi to Horacio. I also saw Lisa, she had just completed her first half marathon. Lisa was also part of a couch to 5k group I helped with a few years back, this was amazing! Congrats Lisa!

I was then getting texts from Josh… the area is not that big, but eventually he found me, as well as Chelsea and Mel, they had finished and were going to get their beers.

We all stood around and chatted some more, cuz runners like to talk about running.

However, we needed to get moving so we could get back home to let the dogs out. We made the trek back home with a pit stop at the Iowa Running Co, they had black and gold truckers for $10.

Of course, who do we see there but more runners…and Doug… one of the RD of the upcoming Pleasant Creek Trail Run…soooo I got to hear – again – why wasn’t I registered for that race. Well, here is a run down…the race is Sept 16th, which is the home football game against North Texas at 2:30. I can make one loop (15K) get to the game, and then travel to WI for the North Face Endurance Challenge half marathon on Sunday, Sept 17th. I just wasn’t sure I could make it all work, and well I am broke. ok off topic – it happens.

Ok – so I accidentally registered for the 30k PCTR… we will see if that weekend goes as planned. It really was an accident.

Back to the New Bo Half Marathon. I like this race, registration tops out around $50 ish dollars, there is an option for no shirt. The running basics are covered, and no hassles. It’s a community event as it kicks of the New Bo Arts festival too. I do wish there was real food on course or electrolytes, and kolaches for all. I will continue to run this race if it fits in my schedule.






New Bo Half Marathon

New Bo Half Marathon – Race Recap

Ahh man it’s halfway through September and I am just getting to this review. I guess football season and all the races have taken over…Anyway, here I have for you my New Bo Half experience…

For my official race review, please check Bibrave.com. I would also like to read your review, so add one!

The 2016 event took place on Sunday, September 4, at the New Bo Market in Cedar Rapids, IA. It was a cool morning, about 60 degrees, and partly sunny. It would warm to the upper 70’s and the sun made an appearance.

I arrived with plenty of time before the 7:30 am start. I needed to grab my packet and was planning on taking some pictures for the running club. There was plenty of free parking in a lot about a block from all the festivities. This lot was also easy to leave from, you weren’t blocked in due to the race route.

Gear: Sparkle Athletic skirt & Visor, Orange Mud Hydraquiver, Brooks Ghost 9, Walmart Tank, Procompression socks, Garmin Fenix, Addidas boy short, Aftershokz headphones, XX2i USA 1 sunglasses

I had registered online for only $40 and if I wanted a shirt, I could pay extra. I don’t need another shirt, so I love this option. There was also race day registration available. The line looked to go fast, I noticed it as I picked my packet up in the neighboring line.

Included with my $40 was a bib and timing chip, sticker, post race reusable cup and beer, and a handmade ceramic finishers medal.

I had some time to kill before the race started, so I milled around, talked to a few people and took those pictures. There was an announcer telling people all the happenings as well. I was on the lookout for my friend Jen. She was running her first ever half marathon.

It was close to starting time, and all the participants lined up at the start, which wasn’t the same as the finish. I happened to bump into Jen at the start. I was happy to see her. She looked very nervous. I hope my “it’s just another race attitude” didn’t frighten her more.

We listened to the National Anthem, which was sung live and the race was off! The spectators were lining the course the first few blocks, I made sure to slap some high fives.

Jen and I stayed together for a mile or so. I had to get to the North Liberty Farmers Market after the race, like immediately when I was done. I really wanted to stay with her, but she insisted I go ahead, and it made sense due to the time crunch. I was also stopping to take pictures for the the club too.

The course was an out an back, with a section on trail before we ran back. There were some rolling hills. Each mile we passed was marked with a flag. Once we got out of town, there were very few spectators. There was a photographer around the start and finish, pictures were provided for FREE! So many volunteers on course, and they were all friendly! There were police at the major intersections.

There were a lot of aid stations, but they only had water in plastic cups. There was no electrolyte drink on course. There was however a Gu stop at the halfway point. I need my electrolytes and I don’t do gels, so I made sure to carry my own. This was all mentioned on the website, so I was able to plan ahead.

I had a decent race, nothing to write home about. I finished…my time was 2:20:18.

I crossed the finish line and a medal was placed around my neck. These are really cool hand made ceramic medals, they were in the shape of Iowa.

I then grabbed my reusable plastic cup and filled it with water from the cooler at the finish line. Then up next was the post race food, there was a lot to choose from! The New Bo market is short for New Bohemia…so the post race takes pride in that and offers kolaches and pretzel rolls, there are also bananas and breakfast burritos.

I emptied the water from my reusable cup and made my way to the beer! The lady took my cup and filled it with a Lions Bridge brew, Yum! She never checked my ID and I am not sure she looked at my bib or medal to see if I ran the race. I only note this as later Jen told me she didn’t get any beer, they were out.

So I had walked through all the post race beer and food, and who do I see is also already finished…yep, JEN!!! She totally crushed her first marathon. She was thinking sub 3 hour and came in sub 2:30 or something. That is amazing!!! Congrats to her!!!

That was about it, I had to get moving to the farmers market. I said my goodbyes and walked the short walk to my car. I was out of the parking lot and in NL in no time.

This is a really nice race. For one – $40 for a half marathon is a steal!!! Next – it’s a fair course, not too flat, and some good hills. Love the personal touch of the handmade medal. My only one suggestion is to add some electrolytes on course. If I can do this again, I will.

Also instead of my traditional post with 23094820934  pictures, I will share my youtube video I created from the pictures I snapped when running.


New Bo Half Marathon

New Bo Market.  Sunday August 31, 2014. 8 am. Cedar Rapids, IA. Sunny 70, humid

Registration: There were 2 races held at the same time, you could register for the 10k or the half marathon. Close to race day the half marathon price was $45 online and that included a shirt. You could also opt out of a shirt for $5 less. Included with registration was a pre-filled paper swag bag (protein bar, fruit roll-up, koozie, race flyers, chapstick), bib, timing chip, post race food & beer. Shirt was a soft cotton short sleeve tee, both distances received the same shirt

Expo / Packet Pick up: *I did not attend the packet pick up as someone else could pick up your stuff. It was held at the New Bo Market.


Pre-Race: There was plenty of parking available in near by lots surrounding the New Bo Market, however you needed to arrive early enough to get to them as the roads around the area were closed, could cut through alleys. There were one bank of port-o-potties. A table with water cups were available. The market appeared open. You could still pick up your packet or register.

Race / Course:

  • Combination of surfaces, cement, chip n seal, asphalt, trail
  • run near or along Cedar River
  • trail sections were shaded, trail sections had puddles
  • only water stops on course with paper cups – very energetic volunteers
  • one Gu stop – with no water
  • all miles were marked with flyers
  • course marked with yard staked signs, however print was in orange, couldn’t see until you were at the sign
  • volunteers along route, law enforcement at busy intersections
  • 5 or 6 active train crossings
  • random port-o-potties on course
  • some hills, not steep
  • timing mat at the half way point
  • Out and back loop course
  • a few spectators
  • Photographer on the course in one spot
  • no medical tents – I never saw a medic on course


Post Race: Timing mat and clock marked the finish. Handed a ceramic hand made medal. There was no water at the immediate finish. However once on the Market grounds there was a table with a cooler of mixed Gatorade and ice. After a little walk to the market building you could find all the post race food: breakfast burrito, fruit roll ups, pretzel roll, kolache, protein bar, banana, orange, bottled water & Gatorade. Craft beer was also available, but had to back track to a different tent to grab a cup. Awards were handed out on the market grounds, but there was no shade in that area.


Overall: Race organized smoothly, good price, fair course. I would run it again, but bring a hydration belt with Gatorade.

Personal: I really didn’t have any goal going into this race. I was running with Laura, and Josh ran too. I wanted to say I ran 3 half marathons in one month, which I did. It was also my 21st half. I have also been struggling with PF, it has been hit and miss, but this race help me determine it will be ok, but currently 13.1 is my limit. My other concern during this race was the rising heat and sun, but only having water on the course. Everyone runs / trains differently, for me I like to have some sort of electrolyte beverage for this distance. I should have read the information posted and brought mine with me. I took it slow and did some walking the last mile, didn’t want to risk anything. Results: 2:18:05


I have also posted this on Bibrave. If there is a race you have run or need more information, check out bibrave.com

5th Season 8k

Health Solutions 5th Season 8k. Friday July 4, 2014. 8 am. Cedar Rapids, IA. Sunny humid 65 degrees.

Registration: Available online, and at packet pick up the day before. No race day registration. Included with registration fees a dri-fit t-shirt, bib, timing chip, lots of paper flyers & coupons, & a protein bar.

Packet pick up: Packets could be picked up the day before the race near the start at the Museum or on race day near the start in the park. Someone else could pick up your stuff.

Pre-Race: Plenty of parking available around downtown or the race starting area. Might have had to walk a couple blocks. Port-o-potties were lined up on the street, but the street wasn’t closed to traffic. There were lots of people milling about. Runners were encouraged to line up at the start 10 minutes before race start. Corrals were based on pacing time, but near the back the pace went from around 9 minutes per mile to walking. The National Anthem was sung live and then the race was underway, on time.

* There was also a 5k, it started 15 minutes after the 8k, on the same course

Course / Race: The race was on an out and back course. There were a lot of racers in the 8k, bordering on crowded. The course started on paved or asphalt surfaces with no major potholes or cracks. Then we ended up in a petting zoo park, where the surface was packed dirt, or gravel; where there were holes and things to watch out for. This was also the area of the turn around, it was tight. Each mile was marked with a flag banner. There were plenty of volunteers or law enforcement at every intersection. Water hydration stops only with paper cups, one stop had giant 20 oz cups. There were some inclines, but no major hills. There were a nice gathering of spectators, but the course was not lined with them. The finish line was clearly marked with a clock and an arch.

Post Race: There were popsicles, gatorade, and water in the finishing chute. No medals just for running. Other food items in the park. There were 2 free drink tickets to redeem at a nearby bar, about a 3 block walk. *I did not stick around for the awards ceremony

Overall: I wouldn’t add this race to your bucket list, but if you like a bigger racing crowd, it’s your race. If I remember the price was in the $20-$20 range, and there are not many 8k’s around.

Personal: I ran this race with Laura and Josh. Josh is always so much faster, but I kept up with Laura for the most part, however she was on a negative splits plan, and I lost her the last mile. I felt good, didn’t have any goals for the race, just to finish with a smile. I was close to a PR, results.


I did not like how the 5k turnaround was in the middle of the 8k, depending on your pace you could have been scattered with slower / faster runners, it created a bottle neck. This course also reminded me of the Bix, less alcohol, but still lots of runners on a out and back course, minus the Brady St Hill. Even saw a fully naked man on the course.


You can also check out my review at bibrave