Race Recap: Birch Bay Half Marathon

First things first, I ran a sub 2:15 Half Marathon!!! I was beyond excited when I crossed the finish line!

Screen Shot 2013-02-17 at 4.05.00 PM

This morning I ran my second half marathon, the first was the 2011 Shanghai Half.  Kyle & I woke up nice and early this morning to drive down to Birch Bay.  It was our first time to the ocean town.


Birch Bay Panorama

The lovely Birch Bay.


Kyle was half asleep when we arrived at the starting line!


My hopeful splits…


Ready to get my Harry Potter on!


The Race


Mile 3ish


Mile 5 Aid Station


Mile 10 ~ after a solid 90minutes of pouring rain my body was freezing, especially my hands.  Thankfully, my dearest hushand brought me my mittens!


Almost to the finish line! The lady running next to me kept me motivated to finish strong!

marathon man

Check it out, it’s the Marathon Man! I got to met him just before the race (photo here on his blog). Kyle snapped this photo of him. If you haven’t check out his journey, you should!

My Splits

Screen Shot 2013-02-17 at 4.44.13 PM

The plan was: Miles 1-5 @ 10:30 pace, Miles 6-10 @ 10:00 pace, & Miles 11 – 13.1 @ 9:30.  I did not actually practice running these splits so I was pretty happy with the outcome!

Post race


Of course the sun comes out just as I came near the finish line:)


My cheerleader/photographer/chauffeur!!! I am a lucky lady!

The Gear




The Recap

Prior to running the race I tried to find some race reviews from the past few years.  Overall, it seemed like it would be a pretty low key race and runners should come prepared with their own hydration & nutrition.

Here’s my review…

Screen Shot 2013-02-17 at 8.29.38 PMThe Course: I really enjoyed the course. It was quite flat, expect for a large hill at miles 6.5-8.  And the scenery around the bay was stunning.  Since there were only about 300 runners running on open roads did not cause any issues.  All the race staff & volunteers did a great job. I only wish there would have been a banner over the start & finish lines.


The Weather: Rain, Rain, Rain! I was not expecting it to rain.  After looking at a few different weather sites I decided to leave my rain jacket at home and run in shorts & my windbreaker.  Well, I was wrong!  It poured for a solid 90 minutes! I was soaked from head to toe.  My legs were frozen and since I was wearing shorts started to get a little bit irritated.  I guess I should have known it would rain because a few days ago the race director emailed out that it has never rained in 44 runnings… Never say never. Haha! Oh well, that’s life.

hammer gelThe Aid Stations: After reading reviews I had very low expectations and packed my own Hammer Gels (apple cinnamon is my fav) . There were stations at miles: 3, 5, 7, 10.  Each had water & gatorade but I did not see any Gels (although the race information page said there would be GU and I saw a huge box of them at the packet pick up).  I ended up eating one gel at mile 8.

Overall I had a really great race experience.  Usually, I prefer a larger race scene but I actually really enjoyed the smaller turn out.  Though, I probably would not do a full this small.  Honestly, for $40 I really could not have asked for a better event!

My suggestions: make sure there are actually gels & have a bit more of a bang at the start and finish. Other than that I have no real complaints.


8 responses to “Race Recap: Birch Bay Half Marathon

  1. Oh wow! That looks beautiful! I didn’t know that race was this weekend (I’m in Seattle) — Good job on the race!!!

  2. You did amazing and I’m so proud of your accomplishment! Way to go!

  3. Great job! I was there too (one of the women in the “freakishly amazing” shirts) and actually worked hard to keep you in sight. The orange shorts stood out. Thanks for motivating me! I hope this doesn’t sound creepy but I was not far behind you when your husband gave you mittens, and I was envious! I fantasized about the gloves and jacket I left in the car. Great fun though.My Garmin said 2:14:44 for me, but my official finish time will be slower because we started late. Oops.

  4. Hey Carla,

    I am so glad you found my race recap! It was such a fun race, even though it rained! I was so excited when I saw Kyle and knew he had my gloves! I honestly thought my hands were going to fall off. You guys ran a great race and it was nice to met you! Thanks again for finding my post, it is always awesome to hear from other runners!


    p.s. I need to drive down to the Nike outlet to get that shirt. It is probably the sweetest Nike shirt ever!

  5. Pingback: Race Recap: The Vancouver Sun Run | airplanesandtreadmills

  6. Pingback: Race Recap: Run for Water Half Marathon | airplanesandtreadmills

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