The Race I Didn’t Run

Yesterday we woke up at 4:30 am, hopped in the car and drove 40 miles to run the Drake 1/2 Marathon.  When I woke, I had a gut feeling I shouldn’t be running this race.  I couldn’t put my finger on a firm reason why, so I decided to just go with the flow and head to Des Moines. We arrived at about 6:10 am.  With the start time at 7:30 am, we had plenty of time to get organized, do a short shake out run, hit the loo and get to the start line.

Race Ready…Let’s run this thing!!

The weather was not in our favor with temperatures at 45F, winds at 25 mph from the E and a 70% chance of severe thunderstorms.  While the temperature was almost perfect, the severe storms were anything but perfect.  After a short shake out run we heard the following announcement as we approached the start line, “All races will be delayed 30 minutes.  Please make your way into the Knapp Center to take shelter.” Great…just what we all want to do…wait in a crowded building for storms to pass.  As you might expect, the energy in the building was high with lots of people ready to race.  Some 1/2 marathon virgins and some veterans, some 10K virgins and some veterans, some 5K virgins and some veterans…all ready to run.

A portion of our gang waiting in the Knapp Center for the storms to pass.
A portion of our gang waiting in the Knapp Center for the storms to pass.

We waited for 30 minutes, when a second announcement was made, “All races will be delayed an additional 30 minutes.  This means each race will be delayed 1 hour from the original scheduled start time.” At this point, we talked about our options…

  1. Continue to wait and hope that we eventually get to run the race.  If the race actually got the green flag, would there be enough time to complete the race before the next round of storms made it into the area, or would we be pulled from the course?
  2. Head home and run on our own.

The Iron Hippie and I decided to do the later.  We have run plenty of 1/2 marathon races (including this one in almost every weather condition imaginable) and our goals for 2014 are aimed at IRONMAN 70.3 Kansas in June and IRONMAN Wisconsin in September.  While the Drake 1/2 Marathon would be a good test to see where our running fitness was, it was more of a C race for us.

They did eventually run the race, and from the reports I received, Mother Nature decided to cooperate for a bit making it possible for most to run a great race.  Am I disappointed I didn’t stick around to race?  No.  The Iron Hippie and I got a nice run in at home with the dogs during a break in Mother Nature’s sour attitude (we did get a little wet, but the thunder and lightening were at bay during our run).  I’m happy we are safe, dry and still moving forward toward a much bigger goal on our 2014 racing calendar.

Have you ever registered for a race you haven’t run?


Week #16 (Recovery Week): 11 hours

Swim:  4000 yards

Bike:  55 miles

Run:  19.9 miles

Strength Training:  1 hour & 45 minutes

Hot Yoga:  1 hour

Week #16 in the green 😉

17 thoughts on “The Race I Didn’t Run

  1. That sounds like a good decision since this wasn’t an A race for you, sitting around without knowing for how long would have been quite annoying.
    I haven’t run too many races yet, so I haven’t missed any. I know it will happen eventually, especially for races I register long in advance.

    1. While it doesn’t happen often, I have missed a few races that I’ve registered for…most of them due to unexpected illness or injury…not the weather.

  2. It sounds like a very good and smart decision. I’ve definitely missed races due to injury, or moving away! Now I only register for races a month or two in advance!

    1. I agree, Laura. When I’ve missed races in the past, it has been as a result of illness or injury. Not because of the weather. Oh well…first time for everything!!

  3. Good decision… it’s no fun waiting around for a start! The weather up here has been nasty… rain in the forecast all week. Gah! So ready for some 80s and sunshine to get out on the bike! Happy Monday 🙂

    1. The weather here hasn’t been much better Erin!! UGH!! I too am ready for sunshine and 80s. We had a tornado drill today…that is always less than fun with 100s of middle school students. I was just thankful it was a drill and wasn’t serious!!

  4. Sounds like you guys made the right decision! That would be stressful if it was your first of that distance!
    I’m always nervous before a major race. I’d be disappointed if I trained for an Ironman and didn’t get to swim or had it cut in half.
    I haven’t been able to run a couple races (one a destination marathon!) but because of injury instead of weather.

    1. I agree Abby!! I would feel so cheated if the IM course was cut in some way. It happened to a friend of mine that the swim course was cut short. She had a much better attitude about it than I would have 🙂

  5. You are so cute and fun in your SOAS kit – all ready to go, right?! 🙂 I probably would have made the same decision, unless it was a race that I paid big bucks for and had been training for over a long period of time. I’ve never had a race canceled or postponed, but have ran in some pretty unforgiving conditions. Have a great week of training!!

    1. Thanks Kristen 😉 We didn’t pay big bucks for the race and we were training through this race (no tapering for it), so I didn’t feel bad about it.

  6. Oh man! That is too bad! It is hard when you drive there. Do your shake out run. Have your breakfast and nutrition set for the time of the start and then to be delayed. That is tough! You made a good decision though!
    I think that I haven’t raced twice. Once I signed up for the Seattle 1/2 marathon and I didn’t realize it was a Saturday and not Sunday! 😦 I signed up for a 1/2 IM and got sick 2 days before..real sick!! That was a sad day deciding to DNS!

    1. Doing the shake out run only to be told of the delay afterwards was frustrating, but our decision was the best for us. Sorry to here of your difficult DNS Leslie!!

  7. It’s crazy how you naturally had a gut feeling about the race! I swear the universe speaks to us. Anyway, I have never not run a race I have signed up for, but a few times I have considered not running it. Honestly, reading this makes me miss thunderstorms in the midwest. It’s the one thing I truly miss living in sunny San Diego. Glad you still had a great run!

    1. I’ve inly had a gut feeling one other time before a race. We participated, but when I crossed the finish line, tornado sirens were going off and the volunteers were telling us to take cover under the white party tents. My husband and I grabbed our gear and left instead. After this last week of rain everyday, I’m not sure I know what the sun looks like 😉

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