Nike Women’s Half Marathon Race Recap

I wrote this 2 weeks ago. Yup, still a slacker!

After dropping out of Chicago due to a strained popliteus (so weird, don’t get me started) I was able to rehab and make it to the starting line of the Nike Women’s Half in San Francisco. It had been 5 years since I ran this race and was eager to get back.

I flew into SF on Saturday and went straight from the airport to The Westin to pick up my bib. Packet pick up was a breeze! Thank you volunteers! I took my sweet time and walked around the outdoor event in Union Square (lots of samples, photos, earring scavenger hunt location, booth to buy last minute needs, etc) and eventually made it over to my hotel to get checked in. I know the city well and stayed within walking distance to everything I could need for the weekend. Including the start line. I got settled in, chilled out for a bit, and then met my girlfriends for dinner.

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The race started at 6:30 a.m. on Sunday. I was able to sleep later than most given the start line was directly outside of my hotel and headed to my corral around 6:10. The weather was so nice; 62 degrees and no fog! Beautiful compared to our warm, humid SoCal mornings.

I had no intent on racing (Was released from PT one week prior. So bummed as my original plan was to just go for it) so I moved into the the middle of my corral (wave 1) and waited for the gun.

At 6:30 sharp we were off!

I was stuck in what felt like a slow moving pack for a long time and just went with it. The hills started right away but man, it was beautiful.

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Around the time we entered Golden Gate park (5k mark?)  the race started to break up. There was a lot more room and overall it was a lot more calm.

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I grabbed a honey stinger gel along the way and took that around mile 6.

At mile 9.5 we started the climb up the Presidio and got a stunning view of the Golden Gate bridge. Nike Run Club was out in full force encouraging people to make it up the tough climb. So great to see the community support. Way to go NRC!

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I cruised downhill to the finish (picking up salted caramel chocolates along the way, yum!) and crossed around 1:49 and change. It was such an enjoyable race. You can tell in my photos that the effort is easy and that I was having fun. I loved it!

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After I crossed the finish line I was handed a pink Nike water bottle, a reusable bag filled with food and a little blue Tiffany’s box. Someone handed me chocolate milk as I waited to meet up with friends.

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The finisher’s village had men in tuxedos out in full force with lots of sweaty ladies swarming for photos. There were very short lines at that time so it appeared to be going quickly. There was also a boutique that had finisher gear for purchase (all available online and in stores). I whizzed through to take a look as I am a sucker for grey and Tiffany blue. I didn’t check gear but saw people grabbing their stuff and it looked to be organized. There were large signs for the shuttles and folks making their way out. I opted to use public transportation because I am cheap and will never pay $20 to get a ride back unless there is no other option. The Muni is $2.25. Win.

The course was beautiful and well organized and overall I had a great weekend.

So for the $200 reg fee I got:

A gorgeous race

Tiffany’s Necklace

Tank Top

17 race photos!

Reusable Bag

Reusable Nike Women Water Bottle

Food at the finish

It’s a crowded race with a high price tag, but a lot of fun to do with friends. It’s cheaper than Disney with a later start and the necklace is so pretty.

Would I run this again? Sure. It’s not a priority since I’ve done it twice, but it is fun. I love the city, the vibe, and the weekend away. The race is well organized and not as crazy big as some of the Rock N Roll races I’ve done. Is it a “must do?!” For me Boston was a must. NY was a must. Chicago? YES! This is more of a “fun run with friends weekend away.” Does that make sense?

I have had such a chill year when it comes to racing. I PR’d in the 10k and ran my first 10 miler but other than that, not a whole lot on the race front. I have one half marathon left this year and, if I train right, may push to break that 1:38 hanging over my head. I’m due. Just need to put in the work…and then we will focus back on 26.2. Maybe. Ok, probably. Who am I kidding.

Until next time…

“Life is so much brighter when we focus on what truly matters.”

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