Thursday, November 6, 2008

13.1 Miles...Sehr Gut!

Considering we are obsessed with all things German, it should come as no surprise that when we decided to run a half-marathon, we did it Oktoberfest-style. Leavenworth--Washington's answer to Bavaria (Missouri folks, think Hermann)--hosted their 2nd annual marathon and half-marathon at the beginning of the Oktoberfest season. A large production it was not. I ran in the Kansas City half-marathon last year, which was a huge race with thousands of participants and vendors at the finish line. Conversely, Leavenworth was on such a small scale that we picked up our numbers and commemorative race shirts at the fish hatchery. What the race lacked in porta-potties and water stops, however, was made up for in scenery. Even though we had the constant call of the highway patrol shouting "Runners, stay to the right!" in our ears, it was a beautiful course through the valley along the river. And it didn't rain...much. Overall, we were pretty satisfied with our respective performances. I set a new personal record by running close to 15 minutes faster than Kansas City's race, and Jon finished in one hour, 51 minutes, which is awesome, especially considering it was his first half-marathon. Some friends of ours also ran the half-marathon, so we rented a condo in Leavenworth and made an entire weekend of it. Jon and I were feeling as good as you can feel after running 13.1 miles on next to no sleep, so we spent the rest of the day enjoying the "fest"-ivities. While far from Germany, both literally and figuratively, there was still plenty of beer and oompa music. However, Americans don't have any traditional toasting songs like the ones in Germany, so when they raise their glasses, all they can think to shout is "Heeeeeyyyyyy!" This proved to be especially amusing to Jon. Needless to say, we called it a night fairly early and limped back to the condo on sore muscles, exhausted, yet triumphant. Now it's time to train for Seattle's half-marathon over Thanksgiving weekend...

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