Heart Half Marathon

Heart Half Marathon/November 2nd/$50

This is a smaller race, maybe 300 participants for the half marathon.  They had a 5k and a 10k attached to it.  The price was super reasonable.

The race was in Fort Collins, Colorado out and around Boyd Lake, mostly around the trail.  It was November so the morning was bright sunshine and cold.  Race day was like…28*.  Someone commented on the beauty of the mountains but we shut her down pretty quick. LOL. It was frigid.

worst website ever.

Rarely works.

No information.

Link usually goes to a “page not found”.

The website DOES say “At UCHealth, one of our primary goals is to educate the communities we serve about the importance of leading healthy and active lifestyles to lower the risk of heart disease.”

This was a kind of bare bones race.  Basic necessities.  No timing chips.  Just a bib.

Expo

There was no expo.  There was a packet pickup the day before at the local running store but since I’m not local I chose race day.  Super convenient but cold.

The t shirts were ridiculously pink. Like fuchsia for the girls and navy blue for the guys.

It seemed a bit unorganized race day but it was SO bitter cold I think everyone was too cold to even be able to think straight.

Start

There was no clear direction for race start…we did see a lot of people just walking and running away from the “expo” area and asked a few people but no one seemed to really know where the race start was.

As race time got closer, the crowds that were moving along on the road seemed to grow significantly and it became clearer this was the direction for race start.  I remember reading on the website the race start was 1/2 mile to 3/4 of  a mile away so this all made sense.

It did feel a bit like a cattle drive though.

Once we got there…we all had to turn around.  That wasn’t awkward at all.  So we had to wade through the crowd to get to the back and then turn.  Someone yelled “Go” and then we took off running.

The race

The race runs one and a half laps around Houts Reservoir and Equalizer Lake  then exits Natural area and runs through some residential neighborhoods (my favorite) and connects with Boyd Lake bike path.

The Laps that go around the reservoir and Equalizer Lake were, unfortunately, not just “trail”.  I had assumed that was either paved trail or dirt.  But it was in fact, pea gravel.  This can be hard to run on if you have any kind of issues like weak ankles, achilles problems, ITBand problems, that sort of thing.  It just puts a strain on your muscles working so hard to keep your feet and ankles from twisting while you run.

It was a really fast course otherwise.  I would have PR’d if it hadn’t had gravel.  I ran a really fast race and I hobbled the last two miles. Crazy.

I didn’t love the part that ran on the highway though it was short so I could live with it.

The gist is it was a fast, even pretty course, but I would really never run it again just for the course because of the rocks.  I am still in pain weeks later and have barely run.  It killed my legs.  But that’s me. It seems to be a popular race.

Support

Volunteers were so nice.  Stood out in the freezing cold and were super cheerful.  They had porta potties along they way and great directions to point us along.  I never felt lost at all.

I will say this…I don’t remember anything but water at the aid stations and they probably had like…Gatorade or something to drink.  I don’t remember any Gu or anything like that.

Usually they say on their website what kind of support they have at each aid station and so on but as I said before…about their website…yeah. *sigh*

The Finish

When I limped across the finish line and I was greeted with a really cheerful man who asked if I needed medical.  Unfortunately,  he wasn’t sure where it was.  It was about 10ft away so it wasn’t a big deal. But it was kind of funny and disturbing at the same time.

He then told me to “get fixed up and then get me some pancakes!”

This race is well known for it’s finish line Boy Scout pancakes.

But this year…no pancakes.

Someone forgot to tell the volunteers.

I didn’t want any but that is a big glitch and they should have removed that from the website and also from the volunteers memories.

The medals were hearts which fit the race perfectly.  They were great.  They don’t say the year on them though…just on the ribbon.  That’s a little wrong.  But still they were nice medals.

results

I waited and waited for the results and could NOT find them anywhere.  Days went by and was SO frustrated.  I checked every website I could think of and posted on FB to no avail.  I think I ended up on the Runningintheusa.com website and read someone’s post about being disappointed in the 2013 race and after they posted their reasons why, I created an account to explain what I was frustrated with.  Someone followed me and said they noticed their packet pickup notice came from a whole other race notice.  So they went to that race and guess what???  That’s where the race results were.  Under www.horsetoothhalfmarathon.com

Color me random, People.

Now as I type this up, weeks later, I found more people still looking for their results.

Not a cool way to run a race.

If I have to rate it, I’m rating it a 4.   Pretty sad considering it’s a fast, local, inexpensive, small race.  All my favorite things.

Quick touch up…

  • bad website
  • no timing chip
  • Course was rocks
  • random start though it wasn’t a deal breaker by any means
  • no pancake breakfast
  • no results to be found

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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