Latest reviews by Lisa Perry

(2019)
"An awesome half marathon running through the streets of brotherly love!!"
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I ran the half this year in conjunction with the full on the following day to complete the Liberty Bell Challenge. I have run the half two other times, in 2016 and 2018.

EXPO: Easy to get to and in a huge room at the convention center. Plenty of vendors and it's easy to navigate through to get your BIB and race swag! You get an an awesome tech shirt, which I love and wear often when I'm out for a training run.

PRE - RACE and RACE: Because I live 30-45 mins away we always drive in before the race and we have not found it an issue to find a parking garage or street parking to park the car and walk to the start. If you are not local there are plenty of hotels to stay over at fairly close to the start and then you can just walk over. However like with any bigger race, be prepared to go through a security line to get into the Corral area. If you arrive early you should have no issues getting through there. If you need the bathroom before the race, like me, give yourself extra time because even though there are a lot of them, you will still be waiting in line for a while. After that you just need to hop in your corral and wait until it's time to GO! Lot's of energy before hand and plenty of room to move around and stretch. Depending on which corral you are in will determine how long from the start time you will get to start. Start time is 7:30, a half hour later than the marathon start the next day. I was in the gray corral and went off 10-15 mins past the start time. Your time doesn't start counting until you physically go over the start mat though :) The newly designed half marathon brings you though the different areas of Philadelphia across many different land marks for the first 10 miles, then out to Fairmount Park area and then Kelly Drive to bring it home and spectators line the course through out the entire race!! It's fast and mostly flat with a few areas that have an incline. There are mile markers at every mile, water stops, free gel giveaways, and plenty of bathrooms to use. This is a high quality half marathon and I'm so glad I've had the chance to run it 3 times already. It's also very nice that it's not on the same day as the full. The half is on Saturday and it's only the half that is racing - I love that!
I highly recommend this race if you are up for running a fun, fast race through Philly!!

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(2019)
"An amazing race through the streets of Philadelphia!!"
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This year I ran the challenge which is the half marathon on Saturday, and the full on Sunday. I will just review the full marathon here, and make a second review for the half!
Also, This was my 9th time running the Philadelphia marathon in my life. I ran it a bunch of times back in the day (2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2009). I then took a break and ran it again in 2015 and 2017. It has changed so much! It went from being a great marathon into being A FANTASTIC MARATHON!!!
The one thing I will say is the weather can be all over the place because this is run in mid to late November. I've run the race when it was 50 and sunny, when it was 50 and windy as heck, when it was 35 and freezing, and this past Sunday when it was 40 and rainy and then snowing. You never know what weather you will get in any one given year. Just keep that in mind.

Expo: It's easy to get to by train beings that it's right at the convention center. It's in a large enough room so that you don't feel overwhelmed by not being able to move around and there is a nice amount of vendors there to get whatever you may need before you race, or also find some sales on other items. Finding your bib and race swag is organized and easy to navigate through. There were a lot of talking events and other things that I personally did not have time to attend but would be great if my schedule had allowed for that.

PRE RACE and RACE: Arrive early! Be prepared to go through a security check, which moves fairly quickly if you don't have any bags with you. If you do, just be prepared for it to take a bit longer. I had no issues going thru and then getting into my corral. Also, there are plenty of bathrooms but lines get long.. be prepared to wait if you are like me and have to go before the race starts!
There is a lot of positive energy flowing everywhere before the race starts, which is and was helpful for me to calm my nerves. You are standing there with so many others that are about to run the same marathon as you! It's pretty neat! I was a few corrals back so I didn't start until maybe 10-12 mins after the first corral went off. The weather on Sunday was not the best and I was surprised to see so many spectators lined up throughout the entire course. I don't know that there were very many 'bare' spots along the way. I can't imagine how many more would have been out if the sun was shining LOL! There are plenty of water stops, free gel giveaways and bathrooms along the course. This race has gotten a lot bigger so every bathroom stop had people waiting on line to use them.
My favorite areas are mid way when you run past the art museum.. tons of people cheering you on, and bonus was Bart Yasso and Meb standing there giving high fives out, manayunk.. holy energy there...wow, and the finish line.. so many spectators line that area and are cheering you on.. ITS A RUSH that can stick with you for a while. It puts a smile on my face just writing about it!!!

All in all, this race gets a million thumbs up for me. If you are local to the Philadelphia area and want to run a great marathon, this one is for you!

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(2019)
"Atlantic City Marathon Review"
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This was my first time running the Atlantic City Marathon.

EXPO and PRE RACE: It was very easy to park at Bally's and navigate through the casino to find where the expo was taking place. I had my two small children (ages 4 and 6) with me so some of the sights as we walked from the parking garage to the expo room were not so great.. people smoking in the hallway, drinking, and just general casino folk so that was a little disappointing but it didn't last long so it wasn't that big of a deal. The expo was small but I figured it would be as it's a smaller race. It did still have things like energy gels, chews and other race items that you could get at last minute. I thought they might have had a spot for compression boots but no such luck (bummer). A negative: there were no pins for our bibs which as small as that sounds was pretty disappointing. I mean, if I pay over $100 dollars for a race I expect there to be pins for my bib. Don't make me go to the store to buy my own, especially when I'm from out of town. I know, silly but it was definitely like a wow moment in my opinion. So anyway, we walked thru and were in and out rather quickly and the booths that were there were nice. Some of the race pacers were there, some general AC marathon merchandise, other running merchandise, a beer and vodka spritzer table (those were the ones that stuck out to me). We then left and headed to Buca Di Beppo for dinner which was literally right outside of the expo room-super easy! Another nice thing was that they gave us parking passes so that parking was only $5 to park that day, and for race day!

RACE DAY:
It was easy for my husband to drop me off and for me to walk up and get in line to go. In bigger races this takes way longer and it not as easy, and often frustrating to say the least. The crowd was ready to go and everyone seemed in great spirits! I think we were all happy that it had not started to rain yet. The course was flat and fast for the most part. Because it's a small race, and the weather had turned from clear to down pouring about 2 hours in the race there was very little crowd support. That can get really lonely for some that may only have 1 person behind them and 1 in front at certain times. There were plenty of water/fuel stations and the volunteers were awesome! I loved running on the boardwalk which you do after around mile 8, and then again from mile 23 to the finish. And even despite the horrible weather there was still a crowd at the finish line, which is always uplifting to the person who just ran over 26 miles and is ready to lay down LOL! I had been looking forward to hanging out after ever since I signed up and getting my free beer but because I was soaked to the bone and we couldn't hang outside we decided to just call it a day and go home. Other bonuses about the race: FREE RACE PHOTOS.. amazing! and the medal was awesome too. Overall, having run 18 marathons, I would definitely do this race again and but would hope the weather would be different :)

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(2019)
"Awesome local race!!"
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This was my third year running this half marathon and that should tell you something—-it’s an awesome low key race!

EXPO and pre-race— They send you a pretty detailed email a few days prior that explains everything you need to know about the race. The day before the race or early morning of you pick up your bib and your free shirt and that’s that- not overwhelming and easy! Don’t expect to find gels or anything else there.

RACE DAY- I have not taken the bus to the start but have parked outside of the park and walked down. There are plenty of bathrooms to use before the race starts. Since it’s a smaller race you just walk to the start and go once it’s time. In the very beginning it’s crowded but it thins out fairly quickly. This is mostly paved but there are many rolling hills and there is a section where you run through trail and need to watch where you are running. You then finish right back where you started! It’s stated a few places that this is not a race that you should run for a PR. Do it for fun as it’s not easy and it’s run in June when it can be really warm out. I’ve won in my age group and I’ve won first in the masters and they give really neat prizes! Everyone gets a medal that finishes and race photos are fairly inexpensive. All in all I plan to be a repeat runner of this race as long as my schedule allows for me to do so!

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(2019)
"Queen of Prussia 10k - A great race for women!"
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This was my first ever 10k race and I'm so glad that I picked this one!

EXPO and PRE RACE:
Bib pick up was super easy and located right at the Road Runner Store in the Town Center. I was in and out very quicly! Also, Road Runner was having a huge sale that day so I ended up grabbing a new paid of sneakers and getting a great deal on them! Having this at the store was nice because you could pick up any last minute items you may have needed for the race the next day.

RACE DAY:

Super easy to park and there were open bathrooms right at the Wegman's. You could walk right up to the start and move around easily. And you were surrounded by women only, which was awesome. There was so much positive energy flowing from start to finish! The course was flat and fast. The only downfall is the time of year that this falls in (June) because it got hot as we were running the race. I don't mind the heat so much but I know others do. There was plenty of water/aid stations and the race was run VERY WELL for it being the first year. I will definitely be a repeat customer of this race. Afterwards we could hang out right in the courtyard area and enjoy food and drink and massages. There was an area to take free photos with a nice background and email them to yourself. However, there were no 'race' photos or any one on the course to take your pictures. The finisher medal was sharp looking and one of my favorites! I ended up taking 3rd place in the masters and was rewarded a cute tiara and a small gift card to Athleta! All in all, I loved this race!!

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