On Sunday January 17th I ran the Bermuda Half Marathon, the final race in the Bermuda Triangle Challenge!
After resting most of the day Saturday after the 10k I felt very refreshed when I woke up around 5. I ate my typical pre-race cereal for breakfast. I debated a bit on whether to wear the running skirt I had packed or to wear capris. I was feeling a little… chafed… after the rainy 10k the day before but didn’t want to be too hot. I opted to risk being warm and wear the capris, figuring it was the lesser of the two evils. 🙂
We caught the one way shuttle from our hotel at 6:30. It drove us to Hamilton and dropped us off close to the start line for the half marathon around 7. The half marathon starts and ends on Front Street in Hamilton like the 1 mile does. There is a marathon that also starts with the half marathon. The half circles the island once, the full twice.
I was really looking forward to seeing (almost) the entire coast of Bermuda during this race!!
As we were waiting around before the race started we caught a gorgeous sunrise over the water.
We had plenty of time to use the public restrooms (nice change from a port-a-potty and very clean!) and drop our stuff off at the baggage check tent.
When it was time to line up there were no corrals or waves – just lining up based on eastimated placement like the 10k.
I lined up with my parents, though I knew they were going to take this race very easy. I had no goals for this race, especially since I had PRed the day before. I wanted to take in every moment of the race, enjoy the views and crowd support, and not feel guilty about slowing down to take it all in or grab a photo.
They did beginning annoucements and instructed us to run on the left side of the road since the right side would be partially open. Then right at 8am we were off! I ran through the first mile before going into my 1:30/0:30 run/walk intervals.
We ran up front street before coming out on a road right along the coast.
The course was gorgeous from the very beginning.
Around mile 5 we were treated to some gorgeous views of the ocean. I took the opportunity to ask a spectator to snap a photo for me.
I seriously loved the views and took it all in as much as possible.
The crowd support was awesome. Though it was a smaller race, and Bermuda is not the most populated area, we never went more than a quarter mile without passing spectators cheering us on. The volunteers at the water stops were awesome and full of energy. The weather was perfect – it was in the high 60s. It was sunny but not hot. Any time I started to feel slightly warm there was an amazing breeze or shade to run through. It was perfection and I really didn’t want it to end. I hardly looked at my watch at all, and just kept up with my intervals every time my watch beeped.
A few locals were walking the course handing out oranges around mile 9 and they tasted so good!
There was a woman who had been running pretty consistently right in front of me for much of the race. At one point I caught up to her because she was walking and she seemed to be struggling a bit so I waved for her to run with me and she did. Later on she did the same thing for me. I don’t even know her name but it was great to run with her for those last few miles. We really cheered each other on.
Around mile 12 I got a bit thirsty and was so thankful there were some locals out giving out water. I thanked them so many times, haha.
Shortly after mile 12 I recognized we were on Front Street again and knew we were close to the finish so I decided to cheese it up with a little selfie…
And then we ran in front of Bacardi’s headquarters so I had to grab a photo there too.
Shortly after the Bacardi photo a runner was walking along the course and told me there was a quick turn up a side road for a quick out and back to get the full distance. I joked with her that it was “cruel” but really, I didn’t mind. More of Hamilton to see and enjoy. I also saw the woman who I had been running with for a bit earlier during the out and back and we high fived each other as we passed each other.
From there it was just a left turn and there was the finish.
The crowds waiting along the finish chute were awesome and cheered everyone on as we ran to the finish. I finished in 2:40:33 which I was fine with. This race was not about the finishing time at all. I had a great time on that course and am so glad I took the pressure of a good finishing time off of myself before I ran a step. I got my half marathon medal and triangle challenge medal before getting an awesome photo.
Then I grabbed some chips, water and gatorade (they had a lot of awesome post-race treats like soup, chips, soda, gatorade, bagels, oranges, bananas…one of the best spreads I’ve seen) and went to the finish chute to watch for my parents.
While waiting for them I saw the marathon winner come in – it was a woman which was SUPER exciting. I think she finished around 3:05. Watching my parents come in was awesome as well. After they finished we got a photo with the town crier.
Running the Bermuda Triangle Challenge was a truely amazing experience and after running at night on day 1, through rain and wind on day 2, and through the most perfect weather on day 3 I feel like I really experienced everything this race series has to offer. I can only hope that one day I will be lucky enough to experience it again.