St. Michael’s Running Festival


This past May I ran a half-marathon in St. Michael’s, Maryland.  Earlier in the year when the days were cold and short, a friend suggested that a few of us sign up for the St. Michael’s Running Festival and make a girls’ weekend out of the race. A few months later, spring weather had arrived, bags were packed and five of us were off to the races! St. Michael's Race 3

My parents had been to the quaint Chesapeake town of St. Michael’s in the fall so I was really looking forward to visiting. That Friday evening after race packet pick-up–all set up in what appeared to be the storage garage of a nearby church–it was time to chow down with a pasta dinner.

St. Michael's Race 1The next morning we loaded our two cars and drove back into town for the race.  The neat thing about the festival was that there was a race for everyone–two of the girls would run the 5K, one the 10K, and two the half-marathon.  St. Michael's Race 4St. Michael's Race 2

Racers seemed excited and the music was blasting.  After the National Anthem we were ready for go-time.  My friend Emily started her 10K and a few minutes later Lily and I were off for the half-marathon.  St. Michael's Race 5The race began near a school, wound its way down Main Street and the picture-perfect town.  As we left town, the road turned into more of a highway until we hung a right into a golf-course neighborhood.  During this part of the race I saw a few glimpses of the water and a few miles later I was back on the main drag.  This part of the race was rather boring in my opinion. This out and back portion of the race had very few fans; hence, I needed to find other ways to keep me preoccupied. I began fixating on people’s t-shirts.  One guy was wearing a Baltimore Running Festival shirt with a crab on the back.  I passed him at one point, then he passed me, and then I passed him again.  During races, especially longer ones, I always have two or three people that I play a game of chase with.  It helps to gauge how I’m doing and gives me some extra juice when I start getting tired.  Plus, yeah I get a little competitive.

St. Michael's Race 14As I crossed the 10K mark, I knew I was running a strong race.  Finally a few miles ahead I saw the turn-around, only about 5 miles to go!  I saw the leaders go by and the pack ahead of me was in sight.  The beauty of a race under 2,000 people is that you really see how you stack up against the others.

As we approached town again a spectator yelled to me, “Wow, way to go!  Two half-marathons in two weeks!”  Well, not quite.  I was an imposter wearing the race shirt from the Nike Women’s Half that took place the week prior.  I ran last year, but not this year.  A friend gave me the shirt because it was too small.  That comment did put some extra spring in my step though!  St. Michael's Race 10

Soon the race took a right down a neighborhood side street.  A water stop was waiting and then there was about a mile left to go down a trail.  Crowds were gathered along the homestretch with a quarter mile to go!  I saw Christy and Andrea, who ran the 5K, and Emily cheering me on from the side of the trail, which brought a smile to my face.  And then before I knew it I was finished the race!

St. Michael's Race 9After I grabbed some water I joined them to cheer on Lily as she finished her first half.  After a massage, we meandered to the post-race party where an Army band was playing music.  We checked out our finisher stats on the board and I set a new PR at 1:44:18:0, with a pace of 7:58, 10th in my age group and 84th out of 1,260 runners overall.  I felt great–my speed is improving (even had negative splits–i.e. I ran faster during the second half than the first) and it was a wonderful day to race! St. Michael's Race 7

Lunch was next on the agenda.  On the menu–crab cake eggs benedict and coffee.  Yum!  St. Michael's Race 12St. Michael's Race 6Then we meandered through the historic town and visited the cute shops.  I plan to return to St. Michael’s again as it was a great weekend getaway from the hustle and bustle of the city!

St. Michael's Race 8

 

St. Michael's Race 11

Post-race relaxing outside the Inn at Perry Cabin (yes, this is where they filmed the movie Wedding Crashers)

 

  St. Michael's Race 13 St. Michael's Race 15 St. Michael's Race 16

About mileoneandcounting

I'm a young professional living in the Washington, DC area. Since moving here in 2007 I have honed a passion for running and fitness. Growing up I played soccer and softball (and tested track & field for one year). After college I ran a few 5K races, but running was really only a means to staying in shape for me. Never in my wildest imagination had I thought I'd ever run a marathon, let alone three. Nor did I think I'd get the running bug after doing so, but I'll admit I'm hooked! Over the years my blog has grown into so much more than a running blog though. Sometimes I have deep thoughts. Other times I'm simply sharing a training story or a review of a product. Here's the place where you'll learn about me through my many adventures--even I enjoy going back to re-read some posts from time to time. I've also been able to hone my love for health and wellness through my business called IDLife which stands for Individually Designed Life. I'd love to help inspire you to live your best life yet so please don't hesitate to reach out to me and may my words resonate with you. See you on the trails...
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4 Responses to St. Michael’s Running Festival

  1. Christy says:

    That looks like a pretty great group of running buddies you have there! 🙂

  2. Sarah says:

    I love that you keep setting PRs! Congratulations on another great race.

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