Zooma Annapolis Half Marathon took me across my 16th Half Marathon finish line. I have wanted to run in this race for a few years now and when I got the opportunity to be an ambassador for Zooma I knew this would finally be the year I would run it!
After long day of field day relay races with a couple hundred middle schoolers, Allison and myself headed over to Annapolis. After an easy ride over we checked into our room at the host hotel (The Loews) and then headed down to packet pick up. Packet pick up was quick and easy and we were even able to pick up some last minute items we needed. We went back to the room and got ready before we would head out for the night.
7:00 started the Barefoot Wine & Bubbly pre-race party in the hotel. We headed down and sampled some of the new product they were promoting: Bubbly Refresh Spritzer! We also met and talked to a few other ladies from another Mom’s Run This Town Group. After the party we went over to Tsunami Sushi for dinner. It was so delicious! We then enjoyed the night and finished it off by grabbing the most amazing ice cream ever at Red Bean. It was like an adult cold stone creamery with flavors like Caramel Old Bay and Coffee Bean Toffee. While I know Annapolis has SO many great restaurant choices I would highly recommend either of these places! We headed back to the hotel after our walk around downtown, set our alarms and hit the sheets.
Saturday morning our alarms went off and we got ready for the race! This was Allison’s first half marathon but she was so calm and at ease that you would have thought it was her 16th! We had a very short drive to the Naval Stadium and we easily found parking and hit the bathrooms. We took a few pictures and before we knew it, it was time to line up for the race! It was SUPER humid – like 97% humidity so we knew it would be a hot one. Luckily it was cloudy so we did not have to worry about the sun and additional heat!
We lined up in the middle and we ended up seeing the same to ladies we met at the pre-race party the night before (Cassandra and Jennifer)! After a few announcements we started the race! The first mile ran us around the stadium and then by mile 2 we were headed down town to the harbor area.
Around this time I saw my new friend Cassandra again! From mile 2 until around mile 10 we ran together! It was so enjoyable having someone to talk to and keep me moving when the hills and humidity were doing the opposite. We shared a few stories a few complaints about all the hills. We kept our pace pretty steady and stopped and walked through each water stop.
I decided to buy some sports beans at the expo and took them around mile 7 and again around 10. I am not sure if it was the fact that I was actually trained for a half, the sports beans or if it was because I was taking things nice and easy but I was still feeling really good around mile 10. I decided to go ahead and try and push through the end of the race. Not long after I met another girl, Sharon and she challenged me to push it back up the Naval Academy Bridge. I accepted the challenge and together we conquered the bridge for the second time and hit mile 11 at the top. From there we knew we were almost done but still had some miles ahead of us. We ran together till about mile 12 when I hit the last water stop and ran into a fellow race ambassador Abigail. Together we finished the race, even with the little hills right at the end.
During the race I also found 26 cents! I was super pumped because my inspiration of collecting change during a run (Sarah Bowen Shea) was emceeing the race. I could not wait to show her my findings! As I ran by I flashed her my change and she got a good laugh out of it and even a twitter shout out later!
After I finished I ran into a student that is about to graduate from where I teach. She was very excited to share with me that she placed third in her age group! I was SO happy for her and her huge accomplishment!
I met back up with my new friend Cassandra and we went back to the finish line area to wait for Allison and Jennifer! I also ran into my co-worker Rosie who also ran the half. We all agreed it was a great race- just hilly and humid. After meeting back up with our friends and taking more pictures we went over to the post-race party.
The after party had some barefoot wine as well as yoga taking place. We stuck around for a few minutes and then decided what we really wanted was a shower!
Overall the race itself was good- so many volunteers, well marked course, and a great race environment. Despite the heat, humidity and hills we all finished and were proud of our race! They even provide free race photos! These pictures were from mile 11- the top of the bridge- obviously I still had some energy left!
Below are my splits and a course map. Miles 5-12 were no joke!
While the other two Zooma races are taking place in Cape Cod and Florida I will be back to Annapolis. If you want to run either one of the two remaining Zooma races use KRISTEN16 to register and save 10% off registration.
Did you run Zooma this weekend? Be sure to use the link up below and add your recap!