Monday, March 4, 2013

Swamp House Half Marathon Review 2013

Swamp House Half Marathon Review 2013

Small and cozy race held in the
small town of DeBary, FL
The race website is here

This weekend I ran in the Swamp House Half Marathon.  This race is held in DeBary, FL which is a is small cozy town about 40 minutes north of Orlando, FL. 

Bonnie and I had to leave the house around 5:00 am in the morning to drive to the race.  The weather was really cold (around 35F which is cold for Florida).  It was so cold that the race officials set out drums and made a fire for all the runners huddled around.  It was a funny site to see.

The race "bonfires".

Bonnie warming up herself up next to the "bonfire".

This is a really small race in a small town so don't expect a "Disney-like" race.  The race does pull several hundred people and for being a small race in a small town it was really well supported and well run. 

The race ends at a really pretty river that runs into Lake Monroe.

The race runs through DeBary and parts of Deland and the race is as flat as a pancake.  Most of the race runs through the city but there are also some pretty country road that you run through.  The only bad part is when you run in front of the water treatment plant.  It kind of stinks in that area but it is over quick and you are then back on the pretty country roads.

A very cold Mr Half TRIing.

The race is cheap.  Early registration for the half marathon is $40 and goes up to $60 the later you register. Race day registration is $75. 

There were plenty of waters stops along the route.  Each had water, Gatorade and some had gels.  The last race stop had someone handing out cans a beers.  :-)  I never saw that at a race before.  I am not sure if it was a race volunteer or just a local homeowner being nice.

Bonnie and I after the race

The end of the race had hot chicken noodle soup, muffins, bananas, beer, water, Powerbars and free massages.  Not bad considering how small the race is.  At the end of the race the mayor of Debary walked around and thanked me and others for attending the race.  He seemed very thankful to have everyone out for the race

The results were quickly posted on a board.  They also had a TV screen with the rolling results of the race.  It was a really cool idea and made it easy for everyone to see their results.

Overall it was a great race and I may do it again next year. I really like small town races without all the hype.

The great news.  Yesterday I got a new half marathon PR 1:51:31 with a 8:31/M overall pace.  Yippie!!

Chicken noodle soup, muffins, bananas, beer,
water, Powerbars and free massages. 

He warming up after the race in the sun.

Watch out for the gators during the run!!

The Bling.  It's a beer opener.

Florida Snow
(OK, it only frost but close enough for us)!!

My green car is white from this mornings frost.


  1. Congrats on the PR! Small races can be so nice, less stress and has a more down to earth feel. Love that medal too!

    I have seen beer at races a few times, never taken one during the race, but after yes!

    1. At the "26.2 with Donna" race a home owner was handing out Guiness beer. It was an awesome pick me up.


  2. Nice job with the PR. Maybe the cold helped!! And the race sounds great. I laughed at the idea of bonfires to warm up the racers. I guess if you're used to warmer weather, the cold is much more of a shock. Good thinking on the part of the race director/committee.

    I've seen/heard of beer, bacon, and even pancakes offered as on course nutrition. The pancakes, however, were from a local out on her lawn making her own aid station. It's not exactly your first thought of what to grab mid race. Haha

    1. At Disney you got an extra medal if you at 3 pieces of bacon on mile 20. The medal had 3 pigs on it. :-)

      Pancakes would be awesome!!


  3. Any day where there is a PR involved it's a good one right? I've run 7 marathons and I think that beer has been offered up by the locals on at least 5 of those! I even remember donuts once.

    You're right on 35 for Florida is cold!

    1. I like Kurt idea of pancakes. Yummy.