Race #52 – Asheville Citizen-Times Half Marathon – 09/12/09

If George and Frank Costanza were to have a discussion about the Asheville hills, it would probably go something like this:
Frank: You know they have different hill sizes?
George: I know about the size of the hills.
Frank: You got the A, B, C, and the D. That’s the biggest.
George: I know the D is the biggest. I’ve based my whole life on knowing that the D is the biggest.

After having spent a good portion of my morning running 13.1 miles through the hills of Asheville, I have to take issue with D being the biggest. The D’s were easily outnumbered by the DD’s and DDD’s, and there were a few times I thought I was going to have to get on my hands and knees and crawl up to keep from tipping over and rolling to the bottom of the hill!

As I’ve done many times in the past and will no doubt do in the future, I reverted back to the Jeff Galloway Run-Walk-Run method, or Gallowalking as some call it, and according to my Garmin I walked no less than 17 times during the race (solidifying my position as a bonified Galloweenie). Over time I’ve adapted it to what works best for me, which is usually a 20-second walk when I feel like it, usually uphill, but it gives me a little bit of recovery time, and I gotta say it seemed to help as I knocked 8 minutes off my previous half marathon PR with a time of 1:39:46, finishing 2nd in my age group and 58th overall out of 896 finishers.

Hills notwithstanding, it was a race with some of the most beautiful scenery in the Blue Ridge Mountains in one of America’s greatest cities. There was plenty of fanfare surrounding the race with good food afterwards and great tech material T-shirts as well (although they looked a little like they were designed by a newspaper person).

This was the second race in the Running Journal Grand Prix race series and was also an Asheville Track Club Grand Prix race.
Race Rating
9 – 1-10 Website (Information, results, registration, photo links, etc.)
8 – 1-10 Awards (Quality of medals, trophies, etc.) (1 to 10)
8 – 1-10 Awards Presentation (PA system, winning times, etc.) (1 to 10)
7 – 1-10 Food for Race Participants (1 to 10)
9 – 1-10 T-Shirts (1 to 10 with 5 being average)
6 – 4/6 Part of Race Series (Grand Prix, etc.) (6=Yes and 4=No)
5 – 0/5 Professional Photography (5=Yes and 0=No)
6 – 4/6 Chip Timing (6=Yes and 4=No)
7 – 3/7 Certified Course (by USA Track & Field) (7=Yes and 3=No)
8 – 1-10 Course (1 to 10 with 5 being average)
3 – 1-10 Parking (1 to 10 with 5 being average)
7 – 1-10 Entertainment (1 to 10 with 5 being average)
7 – 3/7 Age Groups (7 if 5-year groups; 3 if 10-year groups)
0 – 0/5 Indoor Shelter from Elements (0 if none; 5 if provided)
8 – 1-10 Bathroom Facilities
0-10 Other
TOTAL – 98
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