Julie Smith Maxwell (HF7805)The first 6 miles of the race course ran IN TO the wind. And boy was it windy. It was like running in mud. I was exhausted before the turn around from using so much energy fighting the wind. My garmin says my pace wasnt that bad even in the windy conditions. My pace died however at mile 9 when the sun came out and I grabbed for my sunglasses to discover they weren’t in my pocket anymore. 🤦♀️ Oh No! They are in the Mcdonalds bathroom stall from mile 7! (Yes i left the course to potty because porta johns were in short supply for my personal needs. I like it when porta johns are every two miles. 🤣 Beyond that, I cant hold it for a minute longer.) So, that was sorta it for me. The idea of finishing the race and coming back for Duane in order to get my extra mileage was gone. Running back 2 miles to McDonald’s knowing my favorite and NEW oakleys were likely gone ruined my happy spirit. And of course they were gone and no one had turned them in. So the rest of my race my spirit was broken and i started getting a headache from sun. I really needed these sunglasses!
I passed Duane going the opposite direction, gave him an update about my lost glasses, and he updated me that he saw our friend Eve on the course. Yay! Eve and I didn’t get to see each other but chatted on the phone since I was still out on the course running back and forth now just to get the mileage with no real plan anymore. Just trying to avoid sunny sections and the wind.
The course is beautiful. The course time limit is amazing for inclusion of all persons of all abilities and paces. The sponsors are awesome and give WAY too much stuff away for a person flying. So much stuff! The medals are huge and very cool. I LOVE the sand sculpture designed to match the medal. And i would say this race is Dog Spectator capital of the world. I loved on 9 dogs along the course and probably saw another 27 I didnt run off course to love on. SO MANY PUPPIES!! There are so many things this race did right, I hate to give any negatives. But if i had to give feedback, i would ask for more porta potties on course and fuel. I personally carry my own honey stingers, but i was surprised that the race didnt offer any on course.
As for our post race shenanigans, they were canceled. We were planning to do a 3 hour water taxi tour since we knew we werent going to want to walk a ton post race. But that headache that began during the race turned into a serious headache and took me down for the entire rest of the day and night. I woke at 5am still in pain and wondering how I would make it on the flight home. Around 6am I mustered the strength to make coffee. Drank 1 cup, laid back down again, and within 20 minutes my headache was gone. 🤯 Are you kidding me? Did I suffer from caffeine withdrawal? Not possible! I swear it was overheating and sun related, but who knows. Im just glad its gone but super sad I lost our entire last day in Ft Lauderdale. Ive told Duane we are coming back on a non race trip because I still want to visit the fire department museum (which was closed due to the race) and my water taxi tour. As for Duane, he has two MAJOR horrific blisters in the arches of his feet. This is his fourth shoe brand and we just cant figure out how to prevent this from happening. Im sure Runners Market is tired of seeing us. Im not sure at all, but Duane is doing the zombie walk from those blisters. So there you go.
Photo and Post Credit Julie Smith Maxwell