Happy Girls Half Marathon, 10k, & 5k

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Well guys, I’m still sore! The Happy Girls half didn’t mess around!

Today I’m almost back to normal, not near as bad as Sunday, and Monday. My legs were crying those days! Today I’m actually feeling a bit more like myself. After lunch I took Tyrion on a walk to stretch and test the waters and I’m ready to run again.

Happy Girls Half Marathon, 10k, & 5k

My  friends  & I at the start

Overall opinion of the Happy Girls half?

You walked up and could feel the excitement from all the ladies. Parking was easy and overall as we made our way to the race area you could tell everyone was in a great mood. Booths circled the start line and it was fun to wander and check everything out. TIP: Get there earlier than you normally would for a half so you have time to check them all out pre-sweat. 😉  It was nice to see runners wandering the booths and chatting. It was a great icebreaker and awesome for keeping your mind off how chilly it was that morning!

About 20 minutes before the start they had two women host a warm up for those who wanted to take part. How cool is that? I’ve never participated in a race that offered that to it’s runners.

Happy girls Half Marathon, 10k, & 5k

Since I’d been in a car for 5 hours the day before it was nice to get things stretched out and limber before the run.

Happy Girls had a super easy line up and each wave was clearly marked. My running pal Christine and I were talking to another girlfriend who was a few waves behind us, (She was walking do to the fact that she is pregnant and still healing from her previous running injuries.) when our wave was released. Oops! We quickly said goodbye and hauled butt to catch them as they ran off.

Happy Girls Half Marathon, 10k, & 5k

Hello random Seahawk fan!

Happy Girls Half Marathon, 10k, & 5k

It was beautiful out, and the chill left after about mile 2, which was also when things started to get intense. And when I say intense, let’s just say that ladies who have been running half’s for years said it was the hardest course they had ever done. Let’s look at the stats for a sec.

Happy Girls Half Marathon, 10k, & 5k

Talk about up and down! And none of these hills were gradual, they were straight down, and straight up. Killer! The course was 50/50 dirt and road.

At first I was like, “Hey, they didn’t tell us how hard this course was going to be!” But when I went back and rechecked the course info, they did show us with pictures of the course online. I’m such a scanner and totally didn’t do any research about the race prior. I was on a running kick apparently and just wanted to do all the races! I’m so glad I didn’t look though, thinking back. I might have chickened out and I’m so glad I didn’t!

Happy Girls Half Marathon, 10k, & 5k

Tip 2: Do you run research. I never really dug into the info. My bad. They were more than transparent about the difficulty of this trail.

Happy Girls Half Marathon, 10k, & 5k

See the arrow in the below picture, if you zoom into that picture there are people up there! That was where our course went – up up up!

Happy girls Half Marathon, 10k, & 5k

For how hard all the hills were, we kept a pretty steady pace.

Happy Girls Half Marathon, 10k, & 5k

We even had one lady run by us and say how amazed she was at how steady we kept it. My proudest moment of the run, I love a even pace!

The course though, seriously, was beautiful.

Happy Girls Half Marathon, 10k, & 5k

Happy Girls Half Marathon, 10k, & 5k

Happy Girls Half Marathon, 10k, & 5k

We did have to walk a bit through the difficult rock areas, and also a couple of the killer hills, but that was it!

All the ladies we ran by were super encouraging and happy. Since it was a Happy Girls run I’d say that was a good sign!

Happy Girls adds special touches

Each mile marker we ran by also had an encouraging quote to keep you motivated and running strong. I loved that little touch. The water stations seemed spaced pretty well, and they also had first aid volunteers every so often for runners who got injured on the course, and there were a few.

This was the first finish that Tyrion and Travis were able to be at. As I ran over the finish line it meant so much to have them there. I ran up and gave Tyrion a big kiss before crossing the finish!

Insert scary finishing photo here –

Happy Girls Half Marathon, 10k, & 5k

I knew I should have tacked my bangs down.

In conclusion

My one suggestion next time:

More food at the end.

They offered every participant free beer, a first for me and pretty cool! They also gave each runner one appetizer from a local company, and though it was delicious, I really could have used more sustenance after the run. Both pervious half’s I’ve ran had lots of fruit, chicken, and some type of bread to snack on, which I missed this time.

Another personal touch I’ve never seen from another race was they gave a necklace to participants instead of a medal.

Happy Girls Half Marathon, 10k, & 5k

Happy Girls Half Marathon, 10k, & 5k

I appreciate the fact they used a smaller jeweler who specializes in activewear jewelry. The shirt was a nice quality as well. Tip #3: Maybe size up with the shirt. It wasn’t like the generic shirts most halfs give and was definitely made for a womens figure and to be more form fitting.

Happy Girls Half Marathon, 10k, & 5k

I’ve never tried running in a hat so it was nice to have it included to give a whirl.  The bag also had a natural energy drink and a Luna protein bar that were both stellar, and consumed very quickly after the run. 😉

Overall I had a really good time. Would I do it again? You betcha! I’d just go into it aware that it’s a harder course, and not one I would ever PR on. Knowing that, I’d run to enjoy myself and the beauty of the trail.

And that’s my recap of Happy Girls! Sorry it took so long to get up, like I’ve mentioned in the last couple posts, this week is beyond busy for me so thanks for understanding!

More Running Posts:

Training for a half or full marathon after baby

My first half marathon 

Eryn Whalen, Happy Girl half

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