Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Madison Mini Marathon Race Report

Friday afternoon Terri and I went with two of our friends up to Madison to pick-up our race packets. We had to pick up from the student Union at the University of Wisconsin campus. Unfortunately the packet pick-up and freshman move in day coincided on the same day. Traffic was a little hectic, but we made it to the union on Lake Mendota and even found parking. I was a little disappointed that they just handed me my bib, timing chip and a shirt. There was no race swag to speak of but the shirt was a short sleeve Brooks technical shirt so I shouldn’t complain.

After getting our stuff we put everything back in the car and walked outside at the Union. The temperature was almost 80 degrees and I was surprised to see such a beautiful place on the water. There were tables everywhere and a path that ran around the lake. The path had boat docks with sailboat and canoe rentals as well as the paths full of runners and students and the docks were full of sunbathers. How can this get any better you ask, the Union even served beer. Back when I was in college, my Union was nothing like this, I was truly impressed. So of course we had to have a pre-race beer for carbo-loading purposes.

Race day came early and the temps were quite a bit different from the day before. The morning temps were in the high 50’s to low 60’s and overcast. The weather was perfect for running but not so much for the post race party they had at the Union waterfront. I was supposed to try and meet Heather prior to the race but unfortunately the crowds were pretty hectic and we had planned to meet at the bathrooms and did not clarify which ones. Even though we did not get to meet, I thought I saw her driving out of the parking garage and later got confirmation it was her. I guess I should have said something, but did not want to seem like a stalker or something if it wasn’t her.

Terri and I started off running together. That lasted for about ½ mile when she waived me to go ahead and I started to make my move through the crowd. The course turned out to be really beautiful. We went through so many different areas and got to see a real sampling of Madison. We ran through campus to downtown around the capital building and by lake front trails and quaint neighborhoods. For this run being the inaugural race, I think they planned well, had plenty of water stops and volunteers to man each station. I also enjoyed the support from the crowd, they seemed to really show up and support everyone out there.

Previously I had said that I hadn’t been training as hard for this run as I did for the last ½ I ran so my expectations were nil. I also woke up Friday with the start of a head cold. I guess you know where this is going excuses, excuses. I actually PR’d this race by 2 minutes and 40 seconds off my last time. I ran the race in 2:02:00. Once I was running everything felt good and I seemed to be running well. I really was pushing to try and break the 2 hour mark, but unfortunately started the push a little too late. I still am happy with the PR and have 2 minutes to shave off for the next time. Terri finished slightly longer than her last ½ but a good effort nonetheless (2:09:23). This was a great course and I will definitely run this race again next year, I had a great time!


  1. Sweet! A PR - Congratulations. And good beer to boot!

  2. Great pictures! We'll have to plan the meet up for next year . . . I'll definitely try to run that one again too. And I agree that they should drop the "mini".

  3. Wow! You both did really well! It sounds like a really good race, if you disregard the packet pickup!

  4. A PR and a pre-race beer -- a good day by any measure!

  5. Sounds like you had a good race, congrats on the new PR!