This weekend was a whirlwind of stormy weather and calmer skies, the baking of many autumn pumpkin goodies, and oh yes – my spur of the moment half marathon. Last Tuesday, I decided to sign up for the Ridgefield Pamby Half Marathon, organized by the local Wolfpit Running Club, because my parents were running it and I thought it would be fun to do a hometown race. I knew the course would be hilly, because Ridgefield is basically a bunch of hills grouped around a quaint New England main street area, and I don’t do well with hills, but it was going to be a run for fun. My Ridgefield Pamby Half Marathon race recap is going to feature fun and hills…and some struggling, and some more hills. Don’t say I didn’t warn you!
The end of the past week was very gray and rainy, to say the least. Hurricane Joaquin was making its way up the East Coast and every single weather report was slightly contradictory as to how it was going to impact Ridgefield on race day. One thing was for certain, the massive temperature drop and raindrops on my windows put me in the mood to bake lots of autumn goodies to celebrate the cooler weather in style. So I whipped up a batch of my Pumpkin Puffins (just really puffy gluten free pumpkin muffins, but I like alliteration 🙂 ) during the week.
Then on Friday I baked a loaf of Amanda’s delicious Greek Yogurt Pumpkin Banana Bread with extra dark chocolate chips. I just HAD to use up the rest of the can of pumpkin…
In the end, Joaquin didn’t make landfall up here, and we just had several days of rain strung together. It was the kind of rain that’s consistently there, but not too heavy, and it lasted until midday Saturday. Thankfully Sunday dawned clear and cool, with the temperature just under 5o degrees for the race start at 8:30am. It was actually perfect running conditions.
The course was as nice as the weather. It consisted of two loops around the rolling hills of Ridgefield, with a final mile down Main Street to the finish line. The two loops were back near the Silver Spring country club and neighborhood. There are lots of pretty homes and lawns on these streets, with homes set far apart between woodsy areas. I didn’t bring my phone with me so couldn’t snap photos, but this is from my photo tour of Ridgefield’s main street.
Although there were a lot of elevation changes, they were minor. What made the course tough was their consistency and constancy. There was very little time when you were running on flat ground for long, since the majority of the roads in Ridgefield are at least on a gentle incline or slope downwards. This definitely differs to many other parts of the country but is familiar to New Englanders! Rolling like the ridges on the pumpkins at the town pumpkin patch on Main Street, one might say.
Unfortunately, my stomach decided to act up a little and while I really enjoyed the run, I felt sick for most of the race after mile 5. I’m sure the fact that I hadn’t run more than 6 miles or so since the Disneyland Half Marathon didn’t help – I was unprepared, but thought I was at the point in my physical shape where I could casually run a half marathon distance on a whim. Maybe if I was in prime health, but alas, yesterday was not one of those days. As you can see from the finish line photo where I am clutching my stomach…
Luckily, I started to feel better later in the day. I would love to run this race again next year, having trained properly (or at least run more in the weeks leading up!) I do feel proud that I managed to finish after taking most of the last month very easy, and it did make me realize that if I want to actually ‘race’ my last few New York Road Runners races that I’m doing to qualify for the NYC Marathon in 2016, I need to get back into training rather than the very easy runs I’ve been doing. I have two more weeks before my new job begins, and I think it might be just the right time for me to do so 🙂 And continue baking up a storm, and working on this blog, which is what I’ve been doing with most of this precious time. I never would have guessed those three things would be what I’d choose even three years ago, but what can I say. Life is full of surprises.
Have you ever run a race on a whim?
If so, did you feel prepared, or end up crashing?
© 2015 Renaissance Runner Girl. All rights reserved.