Hello! I ran the Laguna Hills Half Marathon this morning. This race is sooooo close to home I couldn’t pass it up. I love when it’s easy breezy to pick up my packet and get to the start line. Dear Race Directors, Please make more races down the street from my bed. Thanks. Love, Monican.
The race started at 7am and since it only takes me 5 minutes to get to the start (at the Laguna Hills Mall) I didn’t have to wake up too early. I was up before my alarm because my body thinks it’s fun to wake up at 5:30am every day lately.
I have run this half marathon a few times in the past. I wasn’t able to run last year because I was on that lil ol’ Alaskan Cruise. No big. Since I wasn’t invited to ride on a dog sled in Alaska this week I decided to run a hilly race that made me feel like I was pulling a sled.
The 5K, 10K and Half Marathon all start at the same time. The 5K turns off around mile 3 and the 10K hangs around a bit after that. So it’s a big fun crowd at the starting line. I kinda feel like 5K runners are more excited at the start – maybe it’s because they don’t have to run that ‘extra’ 10 miles or maybe it’s because they’re going to get to the beer garden first – I don’t know. Either way I like the energy of happy runners! But it does make for a slow-ish first mile since the walkers and runners and strollers are all mixed together.
The Laguna HILLS Half Marathon gives you a little clue about the race course right in the name – it’s hilly.
When I went to packet pick-up one of the volunteers in the front said, “Why are we doing this? It’s hilly!”
Since I skipped last year I forgot how hilly the course really is. I feel like the elevation chart is kind of lying. It definitely does not feel like such a big downhill situation and feels like the hills are steeper than shown. Maybe my legs were just extra tired. There is a good amount of flat from miles 9ish to 12 on the bike path.
The best part of the course is the section through the Aliso and Woods Canyon Wilderness Park. It’s really pretty!
The weather was great for running – it’s overcast thanks to some early ‘June Gloom’. The crowd at the end is great but there is a hill right before the finish that is pretty brutal. By then my legs were done. I spent miles 10-13 thinking about how I should do an ice bath or cryotherapy after the race. My legs were done by mile 10.
Laguna Hills Half Marathon finish time – 1:48:12
There is a fun family festival after the race. Since there is a 5k, 10k, half marathon AND kids race it’s a big family event. There are food trucks and jump houses and perfect weather thanks to SoCal happiness.
At the finish line I spotted a friend who said she was heading to the beer garden. Boom. Perfect. I hung out for a little bit with LeAnn and Sassy and her friends. I don’t drink beer, (but I do drink everything else) so I just caught up for a little bit before heading to my car.
Sassy ran too! She’s one of the Sole Runners from Long Beach. They train for the LA Marathon and Long Beach Marathon. If you’re in the area you should join the team. (Email Coach Steve at [email protected] if you have questions or want info. It looks like they just started summer training you could jump in on.)
I ended up walking to my car instead of waiting for the shuttle. I don’t really know why, the shuttles were moving pretty quickly but I just kinda wanted to walk and think and stuff. Weirdo.
The Laguna Hills Half Marathon and other races benefit the United States Marine Corps Dark Horse Battalion. It’s a great cause and good way to spend Memorial Day.
In addition to the tech tee and medal you get a hat for running the half marathon. I gave the tech tee to my mom because I have so many.
And now we rest and eat and repeat… and by ‘we’ I mean you, me and Vegas.
Have a great day!