I know everyone is all, “we’re all Boston runners at heart” but I’m not a Boston runner at heart. I don’t even know what the fuck that means to be totally honest. If I can’t qualify, no, I am not a Boston runner. I don’t run in that city, I don’t run their marathon, so there. Not a Boston runner.
I am, however, a DC runner and one of my favorite things is when you can walk around the city and know that a race you’re doing is coming up. Sunday is the Nike Women’s 1/2 and it’s becoming harder and harder to miss that fact. Local running stores in Virginia (Pacers and Potomac River Running) started hosting packet pick up a week ago, I’m assuming to thin out the crowds at the expotique and instead of getting your shirt at the finish line this year, runners are picking them up in advance with their numbers. Stop by the expotique on Saturday and you might see me handing out t-shirts.
The fountain on the Georgetown waterfront was already being transformed last weekend (the expotique is in a tent that’s on top of the fountain) while the Federal Triangle metro stop along with the track ads at Union Station have been advertising the race for the last two weeks.
After running it last year and coming back for more, here are some tidbits of information I’ll pass along to anyone who hasn’t run it before…
There aren’t hills but there are inclines/declines. At the beginning and end, you’ll go through a tunnel where your garmin will lose its satellite connection. There’s an up/down to get in and out of the tunnel, and then there are entrance/exit ramp portions bookending that part. The rest is relatively flat.
No wave start. Despite being not a tiny race, there’s no wave start at Nike, it’s all for one and one for all so there’s usually quite a bit of congestion at the beginning. Corrals will collapse about 10 minutes before the start and then you’ll be shit out of luck–this also means that if you want to start faster than the time you originally put down, if you’re in the front of your corral you can move yourself up once they collapse.
The expotique isn’t an expo. There was one vendor out front last time selling running supplies, but aside from that this expo wasn’t what you’re used to at a larger race. There was a station to print signs, stations for hair and make up, a nuun tasting bar, and a Nike studio but nothing aside from that. If you need to pick anything up, stop by City Sports on 3338 M Street NW or Georgetown Running Company, 3405 M Street NW. You’ll also find on that street an Athleta 3229 M Street NW, a lululemon 3265 M Street NW, and a TJMaxx that carries a lot of great (random) running supplies if you need them, 3222M Street.
How the beat the line at Georgetown Cupcakes. It’s long and who has time for that? Order them online and select in store pick up. You’ll be able to skip the line. Other places to try out: Sprinkles Cupcakes, Baked & Wired (right by the expo up Jefferson St.) and if you’re more a pie person, Pie Sisters.
Beat the sidewalk crowd. M Street gets crowded, walk along the waterfront (K street) or walk up a block. You’ll get to see all the really nice homes of rich people and you’ll miss the crazy weekend Georgetown crowd.
Any questions? Anyone coming to run it with me?