Masters Running


Covered Bridges Half Marathon race report (Read 354 times)

New skirt in town

    Okay, I have so much trouble with weird formatting of posts on this site, so please forgive me the bizarre 
    poetic formatting I was forced into...
    The ends of my sentences weren't showing up!

    I ran the Covered Bridges Half Marathon yesterday up in Quechee, Vermont. 
    The weather was predicted to be pretty dismal.  
    I generally don't mind running in the rain, but it sure isn't any fun for my spectating family.  
    We planned as best we could for the foul weather. 
    On the way up, we visited the Montshire Museum of Science, which was a perfect stormy day activity!

    Will raised 107 decibels of ruckus in the scream chamber

    Carl Sandburg and fog experiments...

    That evening, we enjoyed a lovely dinner at Simon Pearce glassworks in Quechee, 
    which is 1 mile from the finish line of the race.  
    We love visiting this restaurant not only for the terrific food, but also for the glassworks itself...
    you can wander down to watch the glassblowers at work and watch their own hydroelectric dam and mill. 
     Last year, though, the glassworks and the dam were severely damaged by hurricane Irene.  
    Here is a shaky video of the waters ripping through the glassworks:

    And here is another view from the base of the covered bridge next door (Simon Pearce is the building on the right). 
    The platform for this bridge washed away later.

    And here is a view from the road (the half marathon route), 
    showing the bridge washed away and the waters lapping at Simon Pearce.

    We arrived to find the Quechee bridge sadly still destroyed, 
    but the glassworks were celebrating their grand reopening!  
    There were glassblowers galore, a jazz band, and free-flowing celebratory cocktails!  
    Will loved watching the artisans in their new space
     (we met this fellow last year, but he didn't sport the red mohawk then...)

    The weather had been torrentially raining on Saturday, 
    and the initial reports were not that much improved for Sunday. 
    Bill and Will got their foul weather gear together and were fully prepared to slog it out at the finish line waiting for me.  
    But...the morning of the race arrived, and--lo and behold!--the weather had broken!  
    The clouds had parted and there were some peeks of blue sky!  

    This was the view out of the front door of the Woodstock Inn, where I was awaiting the shuttle bus to the start.

    This was my warmup route!!

    I was feeling pretty happy about this turn of events, 
    and was running a good, comfortable clip after the starting gun fired.  
    I heard a sharp "click" about 1 mile into the race and heard someone say, "That was an iPhone!".  
    I felt my side pocket.  
    Sure enough, mine was missing.  
    I pulled over to the side and ran back, feeling badly about interrupting the flow of runners as I dodged in to retrieve the device. 
    A quick word here:  why was I carrying my iPhone?  
    I like to have it with me for Boston, because I ran Boston once with some pretty terrible medical issues, 
    and I really needed to have a cell phone then.
    But why during this shorter race?  Well, this race, too, is point-to-point.  
    And between mile 5 and the finish line, the runners are on the opposite side of the river from the main road.  
    Several of the bridges remain washed out, 
    so there is actually very little way to get runners to the finish line if things went wrong. 
    If there was some issue during my run, I wanted some means of contacting my husband 
    to let him know where I was, 
    so that he and my son could get some shelter if it started to rain badly.  

    Okay, enough excuses. I carried my phone. And I dropped it. And I picked it up. And I kept running.

    Until about Mile 3 when some dastardly GI issues took hold.  
    I spent some quality time in a Port-potty, and felt better.  
    I took the opportunity to text my DH a photo of my son's speech therapist, Payson, who was also running. 
    I wanted them to know what she was wearing so that they could keep an eye out for her, too!  
    At least I put my port-a-potty time to good use.

    Finally, we were in Woodstock, and crossed the covered bridge there at about mile 5.  
    My son met me and ran across the bridge with me!  
    (He's carrying one of his stuffed animals in the photo)'s hard to see in the picture above, but he is actually waving to Payson!  
    She is the smiling face looking at him right over my shoulder...

    So, I just ran some nice, steady miles in to the finish line.  
    At about mile 8, I passed some patients of mine. 
    They admitted that they weren't wearing sunscreen, not having expected such a sunny day!  
    I told them to schedule an appointment with me when they crossed the finish line.

    Finish time was 1:53:14, which was a bit disappointing, 
    but given the vagaries of my early miles, not too shabby.  
    21/144 in my age group and 575/1866 overall.  I'd love to have done a top 10 finish, I know I have it in me, 
    but it wasn't to be this year.  

    After the race, we took advantage of the brief window of good weather 
    and skedaddled to the Vermont Institute of Natural Sciences, 
    which rehabilitates and houses raptors and other birds.  
    Will was called upon to demonstrate what our eyes would look like 
    if they were as big as this horned owls':

    The bald eagles were spectacular!

    Later, we hiked the Quechee gorge:

    Annnnnd, that was just about enough recovery hiking as I could handle. 
    Which was good, because the raindrops started just as we were about 100 feet from our car. 
    We made a mad dash across the bridge to beat them.

    Good racing!

    NO  MO MELANOMA! Help me run 26.2 miles and raise $5000 for the Melanoma Foundation of NE.  Visit this page to learn more:

    an amazing likeness

      I've been wanting to run Covered Bridges for years, and keep forgetting to sign up early enough -- had actually planned on it being my June 1/2 back when laying out a schedule and it was already full when I checked...


      Nice report and great pictures. Glad your iPhone survived its tumble.

      I've done my best to live the right way. I get up every morning and go to work each day. (for now)

      MM #5616

        Wow, this isn't just a race report, this sounds more like "what I did on my summer vacation!"   Smile   Sounds like a fun (and busy!) trip.  Congrats!

        I hammered down the trail, passing rocks and trees like they were standing still.


          greta report Robin - this has also been on my bucket list, but i never make the sign up -glad the weather held up,



            Great pics and nice RR!  Congrats.

              Loved this report and forgot to say so after reading it last week! Well done Robin and what a great weekend for the family. Of course I am partial to boys named Will! Love going to Simon Pearce and so glad their glass blowing area is open again and better than ever! One of these years, I'll remember to sign up for that race in time.


              Thanks for the great photos too.

              Marathon Maniac #957

                I think this is my favorite report from you yet (and you have written many great reports).  I laughed out loud several times, and enjoyed the photos and the commentary about your race and the places you visited.  Awesome!  And thank you!  And, yes, even though the time wasn't your best, great racing!


                p.s.  Do you know I still have a couple tubes of that sunscreen you gave out at Boston 2010 floating around my house, and today, for my DD's softball game, I found one and slathered myself in it.  Thank you!

                Life is a headlong rush into the unknown. We can hunker down and hope nothing hits us or we can stand tall, lean into the wind and say, "Bring it on, darlin', and don't be stingy with the jalapenos."

                  What is not to love about this report?

                  The pictures are phenomenal!

                  The spirit of all the participants is grand!

                  And we all got a great reminder from the best dermathogist in the country to remember our sun blocks!


                  I am a great fan of your kiddo, so this report really brought smiles to my heart!

                  "Champions are everywhereall you need is to train them properly..." ~Arthur Lydiard