EPIC Half Marathon

As my last weekend of freedom before living in the halls of a hospital comes to an end, I figured I needed to make the most of it somehow.  After going through a whole host of online modules for work, I figured I needed to do something running related.  On Wednesday night, while searching for races, I found the EPIC (Every Person Involved Cares) Half Marathon in Pontiac, MI.  $30.  Yes, THIRTY dollars just 3 days or so before the run.  My hotel room cost more than the run.

I drove out Friday afternoon, a quick 3 1/4 hr drive to Pontiac, outside of Detroit.  Packet pick up was at the Hanson Running Shop in Utica and afterwards, I headed to my hotel.  Plus side of where I was staying?  I had a Tim Horton’s down the street and it was a mile from the Silverdome, the start of the race.  I went into Detroit for a few hours and then called it a night.

Saturday morning, I woke up at 6 and got changed and headed out the door.  I made it to the start area at the Silverdome and parked in less than 10 minutes.  That building should be torn down, but that’s just me.  Us runners waited for info on where to go, what to do and all that fun jazz.  Not only was this a small race, it was an inaugural race (my 3rd this year).  I was thinking I should quit signing up for the inaugural races as we started half an hour later than we should have.  The first 5K was a loop of sorts and we did it with the 5K runners.  It was tempting to peel off with the 5Kers at one point because of the heat, but I’m knocking off MI if it kills me.  As I kept running, we headed in a straight line for the next 2+ miles.  Looking up at some of the inclined hills wasn’t enjoyable.  Having a porta potty available 4 miles in with no one in line was appreciated!!

We finally got to make a turn somewhere after mile 5 and enjoyed some flatness.  We also began hitting the water stops that were out of cups, but not bottles of water.  One more thing to carry.  We chugged on and by the time we hit 10 miles, I was beyond the point of caring what my time was.  It was humid, hot, I wanted some rain and to finish (and not last).  Two miles later I kept telling myself 10 more minutes.  Once I saw the general vicinity of the Silverdome, I was picking off a handful of people around me.  Finishing never felt good.  As long as I got the timing chip cut off my shoe so I didn’t have to pay for it and a medal was enough for me (you know it’s an inaugural race when you get an announcement at the beginning that there are more runners than medals and if you don’t get one, it’ll be mailed to you).

Overall, I thought the race is going in the right direction.  This was the first year for it and the funds go to the Foster Care System in Pontiac, so it’s for a good cause.  Organization was good for the most part, we had 13 water stops (12 if you take out mile 9 who was out of water), police at all of the high traffic areas and a lane coned off the entire race for runners.  We were suppose to start at 7, and ended up not starting until close to 7:30.  I know it’s June and it’s hot, but you could feel it start to get warmer in that short time frame.  I was a bit concerned with it being on the road when I saw the course, but was blocked off really well.  Overall, a little bit of tweaking will go a long ways for these guys!

PS, looking for results?  Go here, Run Michigan or message me and I can email you a copy!

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