So a couple weeks ago I realized, if I’m going to do this 28 half marathons by the time I’m 28 I need to get moving so about a week out from the Kooky Spooky half I finally registered (I also registered for my 28th Half but more on that later) and we were off!
The Kooky-Spooky is put on by a race organizer here in the Denver/Boulder area, the All-Out Multicourse Productions, that runs 10 races throughout the year. All the races have fun themes and look well organized with lots of information on their website (web link).
So I registered and luckily because of my runDisney costumes, I had a costume ready to go to make the day more festive!
This was a low-key race for me. I was already fit enough to complete the distance and the goal was just to finished. I looked up the directions to the start that it would take me about 30 min to get there and with a 9am start time it was going to be a relaxed morning. They also do race day bib pickup so that was a the plan. Leave my apartment around 7:30 and get there with lots of time to get my bib and race stuff!
I also took a look at the map and, well, there was a lot of elevation on there. It was a road/mulit-use path race course, but lots of elevation but I told myself it wouldn’t be that bad and that the map was probably wrong (more on that later).
So race morning plan? Check! Race map and elevation familiarity? Check! Half marathon #27 here we go!
I woke up around 6, threw on my Poinson Ivy costume (I originally wore this for the Avengers Half in 2014), some sweats over it and got myself together. I walked the dog, finished getting my breakfast and it was time to hit the road. I was out the door a little before 7:30!
The drive to the start was easy, just a straight shot down 93. It was a foggy morning which was fun because I kept going in and out of the low hanging fog. It was really beautiful.
I got there around 8, hung out in my car for a bit finishing my toast and drinking my coffee before heading out to grab my bib.
The bib pickup area was really relaxed and I got my bib and my swag bag immediately. This was a seriously good swag bag too, take a look!
One of the benefits of a local series race group is that they can get more and better sponsors since the sponsors can be featured at races throughout the year. Keep your eyes peeled for local races like that!
Anyways, went back to my car and relaxed for a bit more before making my way to the REAL bathrooms and get ready for the start. The start area was at a stadium so we had access to real bathrooms which is always such a luxury at a race start/finish.
Everything this morning was easy breezy.
We then lined up, the national anthem was played, the race director gave some final instructions and we were off!
We started off on a road leading into the stadium before turning onto the sidewalk which led to the multi-use path. We were then on the path for the rest of the race except for at the very end where we ended the way we began. The start line was also the finish line.
We turned onto the multi-use path and at around the 2 mile mark we turned onto the out and back portion about 7 miles before coming back.
The race was holding a half, a 10k, a 5k and a mile race and the 10k and half shared the same loop but the half completed this out and back “spur” from the main loop.
The out and back was nice. It wound through a neighborhood, a golf course and some nice wooded areas which was calming. There was also a LOT of downhill at the beginning. I ran my first mile in 7:02 and that was after I pulled back a bit, I was cruising. Bit every downhill has an uphill.
Until the turn around it was a slight downhill and then it was 3.5 miles of slight uphill back to the main loop. I was also the 5th female until the turn around. It was also pretty fun to see the runners still on the way out when was running in. Everyone was out there to have a good time and enjoy the beautiful day we were having.
Once back to the main loop we started the real climbing. The 150ft in a mile kind of climbing. It was rough. The elevation map did not lie. My phone and my headphones also lost connection so I couldn’t even continue to distract myself with Stuff Mom Never Told You (a fabulous Feminist podcast I will be talking about on a blog post soon). We climbed and climbed and climbed. We also had caught up with the 10k racers at this point but since we had all been running together it was easy to pick out who was running what race.
We climbed up to a plateau and then we flattened off and then ran down the hill again. That was fun! We then ran some rolling small hills on the way back to the stadium to the finish!
Half #27 in the books in 1:50 which I’ll take since we ended up climbing 600ft. Phew!
Once through the finish we got our medal, a water and a Powerade. There were lots of vendors in the finishing area which was fun to peruse. I also grabbed my free breakfast (breakfast burritos are always awesome) and hung out and chatted with some other runners.
I waited around for the awards but didn’t place in my age group. There were lots of prizes being given away which was fun, I had to jet thought because I was a single puppy parent for the weekend and needed to get back to the pup dog!
Overall it was a great event and I look forward to running one of their other events next year or maybe in December. It was well organized with lots of fun surprises for a fairly relaxed race experience. If you are a local Colorado runner looking for a race I’d check this race org out. It would be great for both setting hard goals or just wanting a tune up race.
Half #28 is happening Saturday! I’m stoked to meet my goal and finish out my 28th year the only way I know how!