I was PSYCHED. The Seahawks 12k had been a popular race prior to 2014, but with the 'Hawks taking home the Lombardi, all bets were on an insanely amped up event. It was!
The morning of, I woke up and packed up all of my belongings into my car (I'd just been housesitting for a week). Somewhere between 6 and 6:15am I turned something funky in my lumbar spine and suddenly.... everything hurt. Bending. Standing. Sitting. Lying. Moving.
But whatever, right? I'd paid for the race, I was excited to run it, and I dang well was going to rock it.
I arrived at the parking area (The Landing in Renton) at around 7:25 or so in the morning, well ahead of the 9:00am start time. I knew I needed to pick up my race packet, and I'd been anxious to make sure I got there ahead of time to do so. I was a bit bummed that there was only one packet pickup day (the day before) and it was in Renton, which is pretty out of the way for many of the Eastsiders who participated. Luckily the day-of packet pickup wasn't busy when I arrived, and I quickly made off with my packet and that of my buddy.
Still walking funny with my back issue, I started checking out the expo. It was HUGE. There had to be 40+ booths set up, with several radio stations, CLIF bars, nuun (love me some nuun!), the typical ING insurance tent along with several credit unions. Nothing super fancy, but fun just the same. I kept my eyes peeled for chiropractors and was not disappointed. Unfortunately, they weren't allowed to do any adjustments to fix my back prior to running, but at least they gave me some good stretches!
At around 8:45 or so, my running buddy and I lined up pretty far behind the starting line. It was hard to tell which direction people were going, and I kept spotting 5k runners in the groups around me. We definitely should've made our way closer to the front of the line (we ended up passing people regularly throughout the entire race), but oh well. They released us in fourths, and we were in that last (and much larger) group.
The race starts by circling around The Landing before starting on a straight shot up Lake Washington Blvd and around the VMAC (Seahawks training facility). There were people scattered along the road cheering, which was super wonderful. I counted 2-3 water/nuun stations, but there were no carbs on the course for anyone who needed them. For a 7.5ish mile course, it wouldn't have hurt to have some Gu at the 5 mile mark or so.
The course has rolling hills, which provided the perfect amount of challenge. Lots of people walked the race (or started off running and promptly stopped right in front of me), and there was tons of Seahawks spirit rocking around the race. Loved the mohawks. :)
Overall, a fun but VERY PACKED race. Especially having it be an out and back course; things got super bottlenecky throughout. Getting out after crossing the finish line took 15-20 minutes of shuffling forward while everyone grabbed their half-bananas, bagels, and water. I'd do it again, and hopefully without a strained lumbar spine!