Our First Race Together
This was my 6th half marathon and Nick’s 2nd (he leap-frogged into a full marathon and then ultra distances). I’ve never run alongside someone for the entire duration of a race, so this was a cool experience.
Here’s a breakdown of the weekend, and the race: how it felt, what went well, what didn’t, and whether or not I’d run the Platte River Half Marathon again.
After work on Friday, we went to the Runners Roost on Colorado Blvd. to pick up our race bibs.
Friday Date Night
To put the work week to a close, we headed out to Parker to see my theater friends in Inspire Creative‘s production of The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee. It was hilarious! Before the show, we split a meal at Indochine on Main Street: an appetizer of wontons and then the shrimp patang curry.
Saturday Rest Day
…for me. Saturday morning, Nick went out to run 15 miles with his trail-running buddies (yes, the day before the half marathon). Show off! 😉
I stayed home and walked the 4.5-mile loop around Wash Park and caught up with my mom on the phone. Then I did groceries because I knew we wouldn’t want to brave the grocery store after running a half marathon (and on a Sunday afternoon). Smart choice. I picked up some Clif Shot Bloks for the race and splurged on this issue of 5280 Magazine. Whoops!
For dinner that night, carbs were on the menu. We went with a simple marinara pasta with sautéed spinach and garlic, topped with shaved parmesan. It hit the spot!
For some reason, instead of chocolate I was craving soda for dessert, so I finally popped open the Cheerwine one of my pink-lady friends gave me during Grease! It was delicious, and I sipped on it while we watched more episodes of Bloodline (obsessed).
That night we went to celebrate a friend’s 30th birthday at Armida’s. We walked there and hung out for a couple hours before heading back home to hit the hay early… but not before I got to watch the man sing some Alabama!
That morning we got dressed, had a breakfast of cereal and almond milk, packed up our things, and headed out to Littleton for the race! But first, here’s my new Nike running top. I love it!
Okay, enough of that. 😉 (But isn’t it cute?)
Getting to the race and parking our car was incredibly easy, compared to larger races. Since there were about 2,000 runners, the logistics weren’t overwhelming at all. We got to the start line at about 7:30, and the race commenced at 8:00. We had just enough time to go to the bathroom, sip on some hot and surprisingly delicious coffee, and take lots of pre-race photos.
Platte River Half Marathon race selfie!
Here we’ve got the crowds lining up for the start. We were in wave 2, so we started about 1 minute after the very first runners.
The route was beautiful as we ran along the Platte River with views of the mountains.
My experience was mixed. I started the first 5 miles way too fast, even though I tried to slow down my pace. Those miles were near a 9-minute mile, which is not how I trained (more like a 10-minute mile). No matter how hard I tried, I just could not stop comparing each mile to how fast and hard I ran the Colfax Half. I knew that would happen, but still.
My body and legs were also just generally more fatigued than during the Colfax, because during this (short) training period I decided to focus more on mileage than pace. The result was a low-energy body being forced to run at a faster pace than I trained at: a recipe for some serious bonking from around mile 8 to the finish. I still averaged a 10:04 pace for the entire race and learned how to push through some serious pain (mental and physical). I also learned (or confirmed… even more) just how awesome the man is for staying positive and by my side the entire way. He is so supportive.
All in all, it was a great racing experience! Out of 6, this was still my second-fasted half marathon ever. And the route was beautiful.
Here’s why I’d definitely run the Platte River Half Marathon again: the post-race grub. There was a full-on buffet at the finish, with hamburgers, sausages, all the fixings, mac and cheese, breakfast burritos, chips, and chocolate chunk cookies.
With burgers and chips in tow, one of the volunteers encouraged us to take breakfast burritos. When we said something to him along the lines of, “This is too much food!” he responded with, “It doesn’t matter today! Take them all!” We ended up with three breakfast burritos that we snacked on later that day, due to crazy post-race hunger.
AND they had tons of picnic tables for the finishers to dine at. I was impressed.
Since it was a point-to-point route, the race provided validated RTD tickets to all the runners, and the D Line was literally right next to the picnic area. We took it straight back to the start, where we hopped in our car and headed back home.
Taki Sushi Take-Out
We spent basically the entire afternoon lounging and watching murder-y shows on Netflix (we finished Season 2 of Bloodline and then started How to Get Away With Murder). For dinner, we shook out our legs by walking to Taki Sushi for takeout, which was inhaled back home with some wine and beer.
It was such a great weekend… and one of those rare ones that felt much longer than two days!