Location: Big Sur to Carmel, California – Distance: 10.6 miles
Date: Sunday, April 30, 2017 – Weather: 66°
Start elevation: 194′ – Finish elevation: 10′
Total elevation gain: +679′ – Total elevation loss: -863′
What an amazing course I ran on Sunday morning on Highway 1. I literately let out an audible, “Wow” as the route was packed with runner’s high-inducing vistas. It truly is unreal and having perfect weather also helped 😉
The 10.6 miler course was a perfect challenge level for where I was at in my marathon training. I had already completed a week of hill training and the course had a few more than I expected, but none as big as Hurricane Point that the Marathoners had to go through (thank goodness!) .
During the run it din’t take me long to find my groove, I just took in the seemingly endless fields of wildflowers to my right and the limitless ocean to my left.
This is the first race I’ve completed where I did not have headphone with me. Yes, it was hard running without my upbeat music to get me through the steep uphills but I also got the chance to really appreciate the volunteers and spectators.
In my opinion, the most challenging part of the race was Mile 7, the start of the Carmel Highlands. It was a curving stretch through neighborhoods full of a series of short, but steep inclines (hello calf muscles), but returning to civilization meant more cheering spectators which helped me onward all the way to the downhill finish in Carmel.
After crossing the finish line I was presented with a handmade ceramic medal, a unique award for an extraordinary race!
Tip for a future runner: Seriously consider running or walking this race without time goal. It’s a race worth doing simply to embrace your ability to run in a location so spectacular. Take your time, enjoy the view, and stop for some amazing pictures!