Monday, January 24, 2011

Ocala Marathon and Half Marathon 2011

Ocala Marathon and Half Marathon 2011

You can read my 2010 review of the race here.  It will give you some background about this race.

This is always a fun, small and cheap race. This is also a very hard course with over 34 rolling and steep hills.  It is great hill training. From begin to end and everywhere in between there is a hill.  I am having PTSD flashbacks of them now.

I am tired today so I will make the review short and sweet.  Much of the race was already reviewed in the 2010 race review.

The Great
  • Very pretty route.  Rolling hills, horses, lakes, farms, etc
  • Great for spectators.  If you had a car you could drive the course and stop several times to see your family.
  • The race is cheap
  • The race is never crowded.  I would say about 100 full runners and 250 half runners)
  • There is a race stop every mile
  • Nearly every race stop had a portable toliet with no wait
  • Great and friendly volunteers
  • Unique age grouper awards
  • Always enough food at the finish for everyone 
The Neutral
  • The race stops were not as well stocked as last year.  The Twizzlers, Fig Newtons, cookies, oranges, grapes, Clif Bars, Clif Shots, etc were missing.  They did have water, Gatoraid, bananas and Cliff Blocks. But it was not as nice as last year.  It is probably a result of the bad economy.
  • The small kids working and cheering you one at the rest stops were missing.  I missed this.  This may have been due to the VERY cold weather.
  • The crowd that runs this race is super fast.  If you are an average runner be prepared to finish close to last in your age group.
The Bad
  • The weather was COLD.  The race temperature started out in the mid-twenties and was really shol to rise.  You know it is cold when you look at the guy next you at mile 6 and see his sweat has turned to frost.
The Age Group race winner awards

 I did much better than last year.  I finished at 2:15:13.  This was not to bad considering all the hills, I stopped 3 times to use the facilities and I stopped every time I saw Bonnie and Chewie to grab a kiss from both of the.

Last year my knees where in shambles when I was done.  This year I had no knee pain at all.  I did have a pain in my right glute that has been following me lately to some races. (No, I am not referring to Bonnie.  I am referring to a different pain in my glute). 
Triston and I after the race.

Triston ran this race and is now qualified to become a Half Fanatic.  He did great, especially when you consider how hard this race is and the fact that he is not trained in over a month.  He finished at 2:28:37.

Bonnie did not run either race.  She is running a marathon in Miami next week and is nursing an ankle injury.  But she did participate as a spectator.  She and Chewie would drive the car up the course and park the car at several stops and cheer us on.  Chewie loved to watch the runners and look for me.  He would jump up every time he found me in the crowd.  I always stopped and got a kiss from Bonnie and him.  He also got a few scratches behind the ear before I ran off.  He had to wear his red sweater because he was shivering from the cold weather.

Sporting my new, favorite, cool kids, t-shirt after the Ocala Race. Go EMZ!

It was a fun small race.  I will give this year's race an A-.  Not as nice as last year but still one of my favorites and a great race to hill train.

Chewie was tired after the race and wanted to sport the new bling!


  1. I LOVE the AG awards. Very cool!
    Good job on your race. Hills are my enemy :-(
    on the bike...on the run...thank goodness there are no hills in the water. Maybe that's why the first leg of triathlon is always my best :-)

  2. Sounds like a great "low frills" race! And thos age group awards are awesome! Congrats to you and Triston!

  3. I love low-key races. You did a great job and I think the biggest victory is probably the lack of pain in your knees!

  4. This looks like a beautiful race, sorry it was soooo cold this year! I checked out your last year post, the weather was a bit kinder. congrats on your race, hills are always killer, but for some reason, I always feel more accomplished when I hit them! Chewie is too cute!

  5. That's a pretty sweet medal for a race on the small side! Congrats!

  6. It sounds like fun....all except that hill part. :)

  7. Great job on the race Kev!!! LOL at your "cool kids" shirt. :)