Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Poulsbo Marathon and Half Marathon

Sunday, October 17, 2010
7:30 a.m. @ NKHS
Come out and enjoy beautiful Poulsbo!
Finisher medals and t-shirts are included with entry.
Register at http://www.poulsbomarathon.embarqmail.com/ or
go directly to http://www.active.com/ for on-line registration.

I went out and ran the half marathon course with my husband on Sunday morning. My goal being to dial in the mile marker locations for the race. Now, my husband is a die-hard trail runner and rarely ventures out of the forest these days, but he agreed to hit the roads with me on this occasion. (I guess when your wife is organizing a race you need to check out the course at least once!)

From the start at Strawberry Field on Hostmark Street we enjoyed the nice moderate downhill for the first mile or so and were fully warmed up by the time we hit Lemolo Shore Dr. Following the shoreline through the neighborhoods and waterfront road of Lemolo is always a treat and Shawn, my husband, commented on that fact.....something along the lines of, "I forgot how nice it is to run down here", were uttered. We jogged through town and up past the Well Being Yoga studio on Jensen Way (come join my Active Yoga class on Thursday nights and keep your muscles nice and limber in between training runs!).

After passing through town, we hung a left on Sunset and travelled along the brightly colored houses and manicured lawns of the "Skittles" neighborhood before we rounded the corner back onto Front Street and headed down the hill toward Fish Park.

Neither of us had eaten much breakfast and we were both wishing for a friendly aid station about that time (they'll be there on race day), instead we slammed a gel, hit the turn-around and headed back up Front Street  from Bond Road. It's a moderate hill that you can get into a good groove on. That said, Shawn was getting further and further ahead of me, as he always does when we hit an incline. We regrouped as we made a sharp turn into the driveway down into American Legion Park. Here, you run down the drive all the way to the start of the paved path to the playground, follow the path to it's end, then run through the grass toward the gravel and paved paths that weave through the woods and spit you out onto the boardwalk that then leads you to Waterfront Park.

The Guest Marina and park were bustling with people heading up to the shops on Front Street. This is one marathon that you can actually arrive by boat for....there are three marinas in Poulsbo and all are within walking distance to the race start. Just hoof it up Hostmark Street (about a mile) and you will arrive at the race start fully warmed up and ready to roll.

After trotting through the parking lot toward the Marine Science Center we hit the steepest block on the course - the section of Front Street that becomes Hostmark. It's a short little section that is soon over when you turn almost immediately onto Fjord Drive. Back the way we came, past the marinas and parks, back up Noll Road and through the portable paths at the high school to the little south side gate at the track.

The North Kitsap Track is brand spanking new and as soon as our feet hit it we felt an immediate spring in our step. Aside from the trails, the track is the place my husband most loves to run, so this was another selling point for him. The finish is smack dab in front of the covered stadium....aahhh. The measurements looked good...all of my efforts cycling and mapping the course have not been in vain. I was really hoping to have the course officially certified this year, but instead I am going for an honest, accurate measurement. If all goes well and we do not have to change the course for next year, we will work on getting it officially certified.

Now, to preview the second half of the course......this weekend is out since I will be running the Roots Rock 25k in Port Gamble on Sunday morning. FYI, the Roots Rock races will be starting at Gate 6 in Port Gamble now, instead of the previous start location. There will be signs to direct you to the start.

Poulsbo Marathon and Half Marathon - October 17, 2010
Roots Rock 25k/50k - Sunday, September 5, 2010

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