Tag Archives: Aramco Half Marathon

Aramco Houston Half Marathon – Race Recap

31 Jan

Last year around this time I decided that I was finally going to take on the Chevron Houston Marathon instead of doing the Aramco Half Marathon again.

And then MCM happened and I knew that there was no way I’d be prepared for a full in 3 months so I dropped down to the Half.

I’ve done this event a few times in the past….maybe 5? As you can imagine, I’m not one of those who keeps close count. Last year they changed the course a bit but it’s still just as much fun!

I headed down Thursday morning and got to Houston around 3:30 or so after a delay in Baltimore. My brother picked me up and took me to my dad’s house. I dropped off my things and Phred and I headed up to the hospital to visit with Pop.  Of course he was happy to see us  – I think especially his furry pal! After we left, made a stop to get some groceries, Phred Phud and some race supplies then settled in for the night. I had plans to try to get to the Expo fairly early to avoid traffic but wanted to stop by the hospital first

The Houston Marathon expo is held at the George R Brown Convention center in downtown Houston. This is also where the race starts and ends on Sunday. I mention this because it seems to me that this area has been under construction for a bazillion years — and still the Marathon manages to do an amazing job keeping things organized in the area!

Anyway, Friday mid-day, I hit the expo. The plan was to get my bibs/shirts and see what my friends at Skecher had to show me this year. I also thought I might want to find some short compression socks and maybe a Bondi Band. Other than that, given my current budget situation I wasn’t going to be spending much money

I love that expos are having these walls more and more these days…this one was in alphabetical order so it was easy!!

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One of the nice things about Houston is that you get a cotton race shirt for each event….

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And, spoiler alert — for the half and full you also get a tech finisher shirt….

I stopped by the Skecher booth and ended up talking to one of the corporate sales reps (Hi Casey!!) and she caught me looking at the new GoFlex Walk shoes – I needed some slip ons for airports and post-race and these have the new awesome memory-foam like insoles. Huge “squish” factor and super comfy! Of course it didn’t take much persuading to get a pair on my feet – hey, expo pricing plus 20% off!!

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These are SO comfy!! And I got word that there may be flipflops coming this summer….!!!

I made another loop around the convention center and decided to head back to the house- I planned to visit dad and it would be a sort of early day on Saturday.  On my way out, I grabbed my usual shot of the ground floor…where all of the action is on Sunday morning!!

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A peek at the set-up for the runners’ area for Sunday morning!

And of course a big part of any race, no matter how long, is outfit planning 🙂

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Skirt Sports, Skechers and Fellow Flowers — It’s gonna be a great day!!

I headed back down to the convention center for the 5K and had plenty of time to park and get to the start at Discovery Green. It was a gorgeous morning! A little chilly but….

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The 5K is a flat out and back-ish route – not a lot of support on the route but the start and finish line are full of excitement!

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This guy was filming the start as his lift was coming down!!

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Post-race goodies mean bananas and treats from Corner Bakery.   And there’s bling…

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Once I grabbed a banana and a muffin I headed for the car – time to get cleaned up and visit Pop again for a few hours. On the way back to the house I stopped off to pick up a burger for my now-usual pre-half dinner. Sunday was an even earlier start and I wanted to get my same parking spot so it was an early to bed day after getting my clothes ready —

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More Skirt Sports and another Flower!!

I managed to get the same lot as Saturday which was a block or so from the convention center. I had plans and hopes to get in in time to go to Mass (which, bad Catholic alert – has REALLY changed a lot!!) I wasn’t the only one getting in early!!

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Since I didn’t want to wait in a massive porta-potty line, I headed out to my corral where I figured (correctly!) that the lines would be shorter. It was another beautiful, chilly morning in downtown Houston

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Though I’m not sure how I ended up in this particular corral….

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And in my shock, I dropped my phone and this happened….

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The race got off on time as usual – last year they changed the course, but I didn’t really pay a lot of attention. This year I paid more attention and have to say I do enjoy the new course a lot! I miss running through the neighborhood in the Heights, but there were still folks out when we went past!

And now we go through River Oaks and down near the museum district where, people were seriously supportive…

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And yeah…that’s a mimosa in her hand 🙂

The finish is pretty much the same, down Allen Parkway where there is a TON of fun support! Lots of music, hash house harriers and ….beer.

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Carbs people…we need carbs!!!

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This one’s for you Vanessa!!!

I made it to the finish – no records broken but I’m getting back on track, time-wise. And my splits are getting more consistent as well.

As always, HEB had a hot breakfast waiting for us

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And ice cream and snacks…

I picked up my finisher shirt

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And headed back to shower and spend the rest of the day with my dog and my dad!!

I have to say, that if you’re looking for a January half or full, you should give this one a try!! Consistently the Houston Marathon is one of the most organized well run events I do! Even with all of the construction that’s going on in Houston, they manage to work around it with very little disruption. And you get a lot of bang for your registration buck!!

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The Half medal gets better every year…5K as well as the “Double”

Looking Ahead…

12 Jan
homer_running theboringrunnerdotcom

From theboringrunner.com

Well, my running year did not end on a great note. And so far this year is not starting off much better.

But I have GREAT plans!!! And some goals need to be set because my BIG BIG goal is to run the runDisney #DopeyChallenge next January.

Just this morning, I deferred my entry for the Houston Aramco Half Marathon and it makes me sad to do it. This is really one of my favorite events, mainly because  it’s in my hometown, but also because it’s very well done. And Flat. Ish. And if you know me, you know how important that part is!  I’m happy that I am doing it “officially”, though,  because this means I don’t have to go through the lottery for next year (Much more on my next January later!)  I am still going to have take a shot at the 5K  though, even if I have to walk/limp the whole thing!

Up next is the runDisney #GlassSlipperChallenge. This will be a 10K on Saturday and a Half Marathon on Sunday. I’m sitting out Houston expecting to be much further along in my recovery than I am now. To that, I am planning on – finally – making a visit to a *real* specialist on Monday. There’s a walk-in (hahah!) orthopedic clinic right up the street and ortho help is what I need. I hope.

Also on my radar for this year is another shot at the Marine Corps Marathon – another favorite! They’re moving to a lottery this year so in order to make sure I get in, I’m going to get in on the Marine Corps 17.75 – it’s a 17.75 K race just outside of the Marine Corps Base at Quantico VA. Finishing this will give me guaranteed entry to the big show!! There are also a couple other events sponsored by the great folks (yeah, the Marines!) from the Marine Corps Marathon that I may have a peek at!

Locally, I’m in for the Greater Hartford Quarter Marathon, the Solstice Sprint 5K and for the second time, the Hogsback Half Marathon!

There’s also a slew of Hartford Marathon Foundation events that I haven’t signed up for, but you know I’ll be there!!

And the random “special” events…Like the Hartford Run or Dye in July – I’m in!! And there’s a “Run for the Bulls” in Bermuda at the end of March that I’m planning on doing with my friend Sharon – who happens to be a Bermuda expert so it’s going to be a super fun trip!!

Besides running, I’m really NEEDING to get back to Bikram – trying to save my pennies for that one but hope to be ready to sign up by the end of next month – then, since I’m working from home it’ll just be a matter of scheduling it so I can go many days a week!

So, right now it’s a very haphazard plan, but once it’s written down – training plans can be set up and really, the goal is to get me to #DopeyChallenge in good shape and ready to have fun!

finish line

Not me….yet!!

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