I am in the final stretch people... my last half marathon of the year! It will be the fourth one in under two months. (If I only knew then what I do know now...)
I'm looking forward to this one. Despite it having the hardest course, I consider the Nike event an "experience" and I'm just excited to be a part of it.
I think another reason is that I had to earn my spot. I couldn't just hand over my $$$, I had to tackle this:
Since I wasn't lucky enough to get selected in the lottery, I had to earn a spot with the Nike Club Run frequent runner card. Each punch on the card represents a different "task" - such as attending a Nike club run, bringing a friend, doing a shoe trial during a training run, etc. This is the third year in a row that I have earned a spot through the Nike Club Run SF.
None of it was tough as I love training with the Nike running club! Plus you get free stuff! Every time we did a shoe trial, we got a free pair of Nike dri-fit running socks. So I have at least a half dozen new pair of socks from this year alone.
And after getting 15 punches, we each got this:
I *love* this shirt - it's a high quality, dri-fit shirt. The last two years we received cotton T's so this was a big upgrade for us. By the way, for those running Nike, I plan to wear this shirt with my black running skirt (again!) and a light blue Nike running cap.
After 25 punches, we earned an entry into the race (but you still have to pay). After 30 punches, we get the VIP treatment which means access to special pre- and post-race tents and a special start corral at the front (behind elite runners only). It took me about 7 weeks to finally earn my spot at Nike.
My friends and I headed to the Expotique Thursday evening for "Ladies Night". We were only there for a couple of hours, but we could have stayed there all evening with all the activities going on (which all had long lines!). They had drinks and appetizers as well as massages, manicures, gait analysis, free iPod engraving, photo booth, shopping, etc.
Here's Niketown during race weekend:
And once again, they had the names of all the runners on display - can you tell?
A closer look... can you find mine?
It took awhile, but KB and I both got our iPods engraved:
Afterward, we picked up some Nike merchandise. Normally, we'd rather wait until after the race, but we just couldn't resist. I picked up a hoodie and a tee. I should note that I bought the exact same hoodie at last year's race in maroon, but it is my favorite sweatshirt and so comfy, I figured - how about another?
So that's it for now... I don't have any grand expectations for this race. I've only done a handful of runs (3 miles or less) since San Jose RnR. My left knee still feels a little off from time to time so hopefully the downhills aren't too harsh on me.
I was also hoping there would be some pace teams for this race but I can't find any information on them. Oh well! On my own again. I definitely plan to bring my iPod this time around so I need to do some work on my playlist.
Good luck to my dear friend KB who is making her marathon debut this weekend! And I'm hoping to see a lot of you bloggers out there on Sunday :)