I’m a big fan of #racecations, and this race gives me the perfect excuse to get out of the Arizona heat in late June and come “upnorth” in Michigan to see my family.
It’s the 5th time I’ve done this race, and I can’t get enough! It’s always well organized, it’s always easily accessible and its always gorgeous scenery!
There was construction in town this year, so coming in for packet pickup took longer than usual. Pickup is quick, and set right on main street with beautiful Round Lake as a backdrop. I wish they had a real expo. This year there was an inflatable merchandise tent that was poorly laid out and in serious need of ventilation. It was claustrophobic and stifling. But they have really cute souvenirs, so I would have liked to see more.
I had made plans to meet one of my best Twitter buddies (@spartansailor) for this race. He’s from my hometown, is part of the Bibrave community that I’m an ambassador for, and loves Northern MI as much as I do. The original plan was for him to pace me to PR, which would be 1:50 or less. However, he was recovering from knee issues from overuse and warned me he shouldn’t push it. I was more than ok to not have the pressure to maintain a super fast pace.
The race has roughly 1700 runners. This year, there was a new 5k and 10k in addition to the half and full. Parking is a breeze, my friend was able to get a killer spot right across from the start line!
The race started at 7am and per usual, I started out too fast. I knew I couldn’t keep it going, but my feeling is, if I’m feeling enough to put in the extra effort at the beginning, I can bank that extra time for later. I know there are other philosophies that would contradict that. The first 3 miles wind through neighborhoods with expansive homes with that “upnorth” feel. For the first 3 miles the 1:50 pacer was behind us. We were running an 8:07 pace. Then we turn onto the Little Traverse Wheelway, a paved multiple use trail that follows along side lake Michigan and flanked by pine trees. It’s an out and back course. I started slowing down a little once we hit the path, and the 1:50 pacer passed me. Boo….
I had one walking break on the path on the way back, and then unfortunately 2 more in the last 2 miles where the few hills were. I regret taking so many breaks, even though they were short. Even though my friend was super understanding, I could have sucked it up a little.
It was fun having someone to talk to, I normally race alone. It really helped time fly by getting to chat for the first time face to face. He was able to text and even take a runfie without missing a beat. Impressive. It was time for the finish, and another great part about this race is getting to see family. My sister and son were waiting for me at the finish, which is always special.
All those walking breaks took away from my PR that I was shooting for, but I ended up with 1:58:09, my second best Charlevoix half finish time. It got me 7th in my age group out of 44. It was my 40th half marathon (yay!) and my 6th best out of 40. The medal was very cool this year, with the iconic Charlevoix drawbridge on it with moveable arms.
If you’re looking for a cool weather summer half marathon, you might want to give this one a try! It was even rated one of the best small town marathons in the US!
I have a confession to make. I am a SNACKER. I just can’t help myself. I try to eat healthy snacks, but sometime you just don’t have the right stuff on hand.
I was very excited to be selected to try out GoMacro Bars. I’ll be honest, I was not familiar with them beforehand, but wow, you’ve got to try these!
GoMacro is a family-run natural food company with roots in organic farming and dedicated to making the best tasting food with the highest quality ingredients. Everything they make is 100% vegan, USDA certified organic, certified non-GMO, Gluten-Free, and made from mostly raw ingredients.
MacroBars are available in 11 incredible flavors, these are GoMacro's original and most popular bars that deliver plenty of clean-burning natural energy. They have a great assortment of flavors, perfectly blended. I find that a lot of “healthy” bars can be chalky, have a horrible texture, and really lacking in flavor. Let me assure you that this was not the case with the Go Macro bars! I was delighted with the choices I was given. I love all nut butters and there were like a dozen variety of bars with nut butters in them. Delicious!
We were sent the “minis”. All around 100 calories each = the perfect snack size! My only complaint? Once I eat one, I kind of want another one right away! 1 isn’t always enough!!
Just look at the naked beauty of these bars!
Here are some of my favorites:
- Cashew butter - has a smooth, buttery flavor, but a little bland (needed salt)
- Apples & Walnuts - delicious, not too sweet, love the chunks of nuts
- Banana peanut butter - smooth, a little strong on the banana flavor, but overall yummy
- Peanut butter chocolate chip - need I say more?
- Cherries & Berries!
Want to get your hands on these to try them yourself? Head over to https://gomacro.com/shop/ and enter code “BLOGGER” at checkout and they will get 40% off their first order :).
Be on the lookout for our RunEatTweetAZ giveaway on our facebook page!
I recently had the opportunity to become a Spandits Ambassador. You may be wondering, What in the world is Spandits?
Spandits is an activewear company, based in Maine, focused on providing colorful, comfortable athleticwear for both men and women. If you’re tired of basic black, Spandits is for you!
From headbands to capris, to running shorts and skirts, you’ll find them in a variety of some of the boldest, brightest patterns imaginable!
I chose the “starry night” skirt. It arrived in just a few days, lovingly wrapped in ribbon. Even though it looked tiny, it’s super stretchy and light. It fit great and still feels feminine and flirty.
Spandits is run by a team of mothers, running coaches and marathoners. They are totally in tune with the needs of athletes who need quality apparel. All of their printed spandex material is environmentally-friendly, as the only waste product may be recycled. The process used is the sustainable alternative to traditional print, steam, and wash processes
I’m excited to do my first race this weekend in my Team Spandits Gear!
Try spandits for yourself - go to spandits.com and save 10% with code SPANDITSLOVE.
Running gives a great excuse to travel! I have travelled to Hawaii, Mexico, California, Florida, Las Vegas, Michigan, South Carolina and Illinois to run races. It’s the perfect marriage of two of my very favorite things!
Travel + Running = Happiness
Running has given me time to think. It gives me something to focus on, and a platform to work out issues in my head, and tell me that everything is going to be allright
A Sense of Community
Through all of my social media channels and running groups, I have this awesome network of people to push me to greater things. I have met people who have made me sign up for more races, including more full marathons and RAGNAR!
Even though I am just an average runner, I have been blessed with the backing of numerous cool companies, which in turn give me more motivation to run and be social.
Honestly, I will need to build an addition to my house soon. I am addicted to medals!
So there it is. I’m happy to be a runner and be out there with all of you other crazies. Happy #NationalRunningDay!
Hi, I'm Emily! I'm an avid runner in Arizona with a passion for travel and racing around the country!