After months of excitement, it was time to head to Savannah for the 2019 Publix Savannah Women's Half Marathon and 5K. I left work around 1:30 to beat rush hour traffic and arrived to Savannah around 6pm.
First stop in Savannah was the Fashion Fitness Expo to pickup my bib at Kehoe Iron Works at Trustees’ Garden.
What I really loved about the expo is that the vendors were mostly local businesses. One of my favorite things to do on racecations is to shop local. Since I was familiar with Nourish, I knew I had to hit them up. They had an awesome expo specials on their shower steamers, bath fizzies, and shower gel. This was really a great opportunity to showcase some of Savannah's great local shops and businesses. I really much appreciate to see the Savannah Women's Half Marathon & 5K take that much pride into their local community and businesses.
Over the past few months, I have had the wonderful opportunity and pleasure to be a part of the 2018 Savannah Women's Half Marathon & 5K Ambassador team. About 2/3 of the ambassador team was able to come together for a quick picture and some nonsense before we separated to head to the corral and for Cecilia to sing the National Anthem...which is ROCKED!
I got to the corral just as they were really starting to fill up. There were entrances to the corral with different estimated paces/finish times on them to help you project where to line up. I honestly didn't know where I was going to line up. I positioned myself with an estimated finish time right around where I ran last year - I typically run pretty horribly on flat courses because I am used to hills and elevation changes along the way.
It got pretty crowded as we waited for the 7:30 start time. There were a lot of people waiting outside of the corral to get in once things moved forward, but it seemed to have moved pretty smoothly and organized still.
The race course was one of the most beautiful and scenic race courses that I have ran! Almost the entire course is ran within the historic/downtown area. You circle many of the parks of Savannah as well as some absolutely beautiful residential areas.
There are a lot of running "squares" and "circles" around the parks which some people didn't enjoy, but it didn't bother me at all as there was always something to distract my brain somewhat. While we had a pretty much picture perfect day, but that didn't make me not appreciate the shade from the tree-lined course any less.
The first few miles I was flying through the course..perhaps too fast, but I felt amazing. Things got a little warmer and humid feeling as the sun came up and by mile 5 or 6 I was really starting to feel the heat and honestly was not feeling well at all. I made a few stops at med tents/portos and monitored how I was feeling closely.
The race might not have gone the way I wanted it to, but I finished and THAT is a victory. In all honesty though, once I crossed the finish line all I could think was how thankful I am that I crossed the finish line of my 114th half marathon and 'where are the mimosas?'. I headed on over to the adult beverage tent where you had your choice of a celebratory mimosa or beer. Most races just offer beer (if that), so I love the fact that you can opt for a mimosa.
No need to rush back home or to your hotel. Since it was such a beautiful morning to hang out with your girls in the park and relax a bit post race, many ladies opted to stick around and enjoy some great music to unwind and celebrate their accomplishments. Ember City really brought great vibes and lit up the atmosphere for everyone to enjoy.
Where is my race shirt? Oh, forgot to mention that! Rather than provide race shirts, Publix Savannah Women's Half Marathon & , 2017 was a bangle with the race logo on it and last year was a backpack which was my favorite and I use it every week.
This year's participant gift was a race logo duffel - perfect for the gym, races, or travel! Everyone has their own opinion on what gift they prefer, but I thought the duffel very unique participant gift and something that I will use often. I have so many race shirts filling up my drawers, it was nice to get something different. Don't worry, if you really wanted a shirt to commemorate the weekend, a variety of shirts (and other apparel) was available for purchase post-race and also online.
Thank you so much to every single person that made race day so magical for me: race directors, fellow bloggers/ambassadors, volunteers, fellow runners, spectators, sponsors, and everyone I forgot to mention.
Oh, if you couldn't tell, I will totally be coming back to Savannah Women's Half Marathon again in 2020. Spoiler: next year's Publix Savannah Women's 1/2 Marathon & 5K will be on April 4, 2020 and registration opens May 1!