Latest reviews by Andrea Heser

(2018)
"Feel Good Race"
Overall
T-Shirts/SWAG
Aid Stations
Course Scenery
Expo Quality
Elevation Difficulty
Parking/Access
Race Management
Thumb 2000038

Startline knows how to put on a great race. This one had the energy and it was for a good cause. The proceeds helped support Phoenix Veterans.

Here are my main takeaways:

1. Cause. Startline offers many races that help local causes. This one was near and dear to me because it helped local veterans. Startline is one of the only local AZ race companies that I know of that does this.

2. Energy. Jeff Crane, the race director, has lots of energy. He and his wife make everyone feel welcome. It's nice. Also, lot's of runners hung out after the race despite the high temps, which says a lot.

3. Course & Location. Although it was an out and back course, I appreciated the fact that the location of the race was more on the north side of Phoenix. Race location does help me decide which race to run. The course was flat and we didn't have to deal with vehicles. That was great!

4. Photography. I've noticed that Startline usually hires Michael Smith Photography for their races (https://michaelsmithphoto.photoreflect.com/). His photos are fantastic. I always purchase race photos when he shoots them. He captures us runners so well! This was also a deciding factor that steered me to sign up for this race.

5. Bling. The medal design is awesome. The camo ribbon and large bright white medal is so pretty. Also, it helps that I placed 3rd in my age group and that I received a bronze tag to attach to my medal.

Totally looking forward to next year!

Login or sign up to leave a comment.
(2018)
"Dam Good Yet Dam Tough 13k Trail Run"
Overall
T-Shirts/SWAG
Aid Stations
Course Scenery
Expo Quality
Elevation Difficulty
Parking/Access
Race Management
Thumb dam good run 13k watermark 1013

Lake Pleasant is practically in my backyard so I couldn't pass this race up. In April it's already hot out and decided to do the 13k distance which Aravaipa calls Dam Tough. It sure was darn tough! The sun was fully out and there was a nice breze. The Arizona desert is perfect this time of year for trail running.

Pros:
• Aravaipa puts on a spectacular race. They have the most food-filled aid stations I have ever seen. And they even offer quesadillas at the finish line!
• Course scenery was beautiful. There were lake views, desert views and even a secret oasis view.
• Exclusiveness to the Wadell Dam. This is the only time all year that people can cross it and running across was super cool.
• All the food. The aid stations, start line and finish line food didn't disappoint. I forgot to eat breakfast (I know, I know) and the volunteers had bananas, oranges and cookies out for pre-run fueling.
• Finishers award. It was refreshing to receive a bio-degradable pot and seeds as my finishers medal. It was an unexpected surprize that I loved.
• Parking was abundant and so were the potties. :)
• Tons of options. 2 miles? 25 miles? The options are there! I love that I could run a longer distance while my family does the 2 miles. I'm considering this next year.
• No shirt option. This was a nice touch. I'm on a tight race budget and I don't really need a new shirt. The no shirt option saved me $10. Thank you for that.

Cons:
• I wish there was a photographer at the oasis point. I noticed last year there was and I was looking forward to one. I liked seeing photos of people crossing the bridge over the Agua Fria River. They did have two people taking photos on course, so that made up for it. I love race photos, free or not.

I highly recommend you sign up for this race next year.

Loading Comments... Ajax loader

Login or sign up to leave a comment.
(2018)
"Another PR! "
Overall
T-Shirts/SWAG
Aid Stations
Course Scenery
Expo Quality
Elevation Difficulty
Parking/Access
Race Management
Thumb wp 20180224 08 21 31 pro

The proof is in the training. Big 6-minute PR over last year. 7-minute over the year before that. Mesa-PHX half marathon is my self-esteem booster race, I am consistently running it faster. The course is my favorite. It has a slight downhill. Just enough to give you that boost but doesn't thrash your thighs. Parking was better this year and thankful for that. Also there were more portable heaters at the start which was a great help. The finish line experience is the best. There is tons of food and the french toast is what got me through the finishline. I do wish the photography was better. I'm willing to spend money on higher-resolution photos. Still, getting free photos is nice and I appreicate that. I'm already signed up for 2019 and going to train hard so I can PR again.

Login or sign up to leave a comment.
(2018)
"Medals only for top 100 finishers & I got one!"
Overall
T-Shirts/SWAG
Aid Stations
Course Scenery
Expo Quality
Elevation Difficulty
Parking/Access
Race Management
Thumb asupiday5k

Top 100! Running after work is tough. Make the race at 5 pm and in full sun too. Medals were only given to those in the top 100. My place? 99! LOL 😂 Running through ASU main was a treat for me. Didn't wear my headphones either to enjoy the sound senses of campus. I never realized all the flowers planted throughout, the smell was amazing.

I found out about this race through Startline Racing, one of my favorite local race management companies. The race was free but you only got a t-shirt if you were one of the first 100 registered. Boo, I didn't get one. Also, you only got a medal if you came as a top 100 racer. And, YES, I got a medal! 250 runners signed up so I feel lucky and strong that I ran fast to obtain a medal. Every runner got a mini pie at the end.

There was only one aid station at the halfway point. I felt smart that I brought my own water because it was hot out! The high was 85 that day and it was the middle of March.

Parking was easy and in an ASU parking structure. But it was expensive at $3 an hour. Still worth it.

This was a great Pi Day run and I hope to run this again next year.

A-S-U!

Login or sign up to leave a comment.
(2018)
"Runnin' For Pancakes and a PR"
Overall
T-Shirts/SWAG
Aid Stations
Course Scenery
Expo Quality
Elevation Difficulty
Parking/Access
Race Management
Thumb rdpr med tt0589 zf 8531 88635 1 001 003

I ran it for the pancakes and the medal and ended up surprising myself with a new 10k PR. Still in shock because I didn't run all out, kept it in 3rd gear then went to 4th in the very end. Runner's Den put on a fantastic race with the energy, meet 'n' greet with Bill Rodgers and the pancakes — OMG the pancakes.

Here are other positive points:

• Picking up my bib early was a good thing. Parking at the Runner's Den is a little tough but still saving time by picking up early was worth it.

• Parking at the race was perfect. There were tons of spots at Paradise Valley Mall.

• The course was flat, fast and 90% in the shade. I felt safe during the entire run. There were lots of officers on site and plenty of cones out for drivers to stay out of race lanes.

• The medal is pretty BA. It's huge! I loved getting this medal and proud of it.

• Meeting Bill Rodgers was a huge treat.

• The pancakes at the finish line was perfect. Can there be pancakes at every finish? LOL

Login or sign up to leave a comment.