This morning, I was trying to think of something to do tonight or tomorrow, because my parents were taking the kids camping, and Jerry was off work. Someone on Facebook mentioned a local 5K, and I thought, "Hey, maybe I'll do a race!" Which then led me to thinking about wanting to do a longer race than a 5K. I searched for half-marathons online, but only found one, which was 4 hours away in northwest Michigan.
When it was clear that there weren't any other options, I started to think of the logistics of it. Would it be so crazy to drive up there for it? There was nothing holding us at home, because the kids will be camping until Monday. So I asked Jerry, and while he thought it was crazy, he thought it sounded fun, too.
The race had a marathon, half-marathon, and 10K option, as well as a four-person marathon relay. I tried to recruit my brother to do the relay with us, but he had to work, so it was just Jerry and me. Jerry decided to run the 10K, and I chose to do the half-marathon.
I looked up the race, and discovered that it is a SMALL race. Like, tiny. Here is the starting line photo from last year:
The race goes around a small inland lake. The loop around the lake is just less than 7 miles around, so you do almost two loops for a half-marathon, a little less than one loop for the 10K, and almost four for a marathon. All three races start at the same time, just at different spots at the course, and the finish line is the same for everyone.
I looked up the results from last year, and there was only ONE woman in the 30-39 age group (my age group). She finished much faster than I plan on finishing. So, in my brother's words, "If you ain't first, you're last!" ;)
The field is actually pretty competitive for such a small race. I will likely be in the bottom five finishers overall! Hahaha, I really don't mind, though. The marathon will be going on at the same time, so at least I won't be the last one on the course.
But first, we had to drive up there, to Cadillac, Michigan.
Jerry came home from work early, so we headed out at 3:15. The first half of the drive was nothing new to me, but once we got up to Bay City area and headed west, it was all new territory. And it was so nice! Jerry and I both kept talking about how pretty it was. We listened to old school music, and had a good time in the car.
When we got to Cadillac, I was surprised, to say the least. I don't know what I was picturing, but it was completely different than I expected. It's a super cute town--not much to do/see, but really pretty, clean, and spacious. I was absolutely starving, because it was already 7:00, so we headed down the road to a bar/restaurant called Clam Lake Beer Company (highly recommended by the hotel). Jerry was thrilled with the selection of beer, and I just wanted food. NOW. I ordered a pesto chicken quesadilla with sundried tomatoes, and it was really good!
Anyway, after dinner, we drove around the course of the race, to check it out. Holy smokes, is it ever GORGEOUS. Photos don't do it justice at all.
(It just took literally over 40 minutes to upload that one photo! The Holiday Inn "Express" clearly wasn't named for its internet speed.)
After the race, we plan to spend the day here before driving home. We were planning to go to Traverse City, but now that we’ve seen Cadillac, we think we’d be just as happy hanging out here. It’s just such a nice little town!