August 19, 2013

The SeaWheeze 2013 // Lululemon's Half Marathon

Vancouver, Canada has to be in my top three favorite cities. I fell in love and barely got to see it all, I cannot wait to go back next year. Rob and I flew in late Thursday night and took the skyline from the airport into downtown. We stayed at the Hampton Inn, it was a great hotel and the perfect location for exploring the city by foot.

Friday morning we woke up early to go get our packets for the race, BIG MISTAKE showing up early. The line was wrapped around the convention center, apparently most people were there to shop the SeaWheeze store, so it ended up taking us 2.5 hours to get our packets. Rob jokes that the theme of the SeaWheeze weekend was 'lines, lines and more lines,' there was literally a line for everything. At this point we headed back to the hotel to regroup. We decided to go find the original Lululemon store and grab some new gear there, WAY less crowed. I'm also very happy to inform you all that Rob is now a Lulu addict as well, he went crazy over their running shorts! Yay!

Saturday morning we had to wake up around 5:00 am to eat early enough before the race. We started heading down to the race start shortly after.  It was insane!!! Over 10,000 runners all wearing Lululemon gear was pretty insane, it made for a very colorful crowd. We found our pace group and waited for the start. We were the 5th wave start, so we had to wait a little bit, I was getting a bit antsy. And then just like that we were off.

I always think the first few miles are pretty hard, it's always so crowded and you aren't in your rhythm yet. Rob needed to stop at the first bathroom he saw, but I knew I needed to keep going so we decided he would catch back up. At mile 3 I was getting kinda nervous that it was not a great idea to separate, but then he found me. About mile 4 we started running across this suspension bridge, it was basically a long hill up each way, I think mentally that was the hardest part knowing I had to go back up the other side. All along the way there were cheer groups with THE BEST SIGNS, they were so much fun to read while running.

After the bridge we were about half way through and we began running along the seawall. OMG it was breathtaking!!! I've never run a race that was so beautiful. There were more cheer groups all along the wall and in the water, they really thought of everything. About mile 10 I really wanted to walk, I called ahead to Rob and said I need a break. He let me walk for about a minute and then started jogging again and I followed. I think he knew I could do it, I just needed him to push me. I will say the last kilometer (.62 of a mile) was BRUTAL. Everyone along the sides kept telling us we were almost there, but with ever turn I still couldn't see the finish line. I wanted to be DONE!!! Finally we could see it and I ran as fast as I could to the end, Rob right beside me (he is the best).

Once we finished I must have looked pretty bad because some race guy came up to Rob asking if I needed medical assistance. Rob replied I was fine, just 4.5 months pregnant, the guy kinda looked at us like we were crazy. People kept handing us race swag and waters, but no food. I was starving!! I had actually been hungry for the last hour of the race, haha. The line to get food was insane!! I told Rob there was no way I was standing in that and so we decided to walk back to the McDonald's by our hotel. REAL LIFE here people, after a long race the grossest things sound so good, I kinda gag a little thinking about eating that quarter pounder after the race, but in that moment it tasted like pure gold.

We then took showers and a much needed nap. I told Rob we needed to walk a little or we wouldn't be able to move the next day. We decided to head over the Sunset Festival that was provided for the runners. We took the shuttle over and stayed for a few hours, Stanley Park is insanely beautiful. We decided to walk the seawall back to the hotel, a nice 7 mile walk. It felt so good to not be running that I would have walked further.

I was pretty sad we had to leave the next day. Rob and I have decided next time we come together that we need at least a week. I still just can't get over how beautiful the city is. I have plans to sign up for next years race and hopefully someone can come with me to hold the bitty baby while I run. I'm already  excited!

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