Disclaimer: I received a free entry to the Bank of Marin Run Fest as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!
Last Sunday I ran my last race of May at the Bank of Marin Run Fest. It’s been a busy month of 4 back-to-back weekend races – two half marathons, one 12k and one 10k. I am happy to have a weekend off over Memorial Day! It’s been fun, but my body needs a little rest.
Back to the race! I heard about this race through BibRave and was excited to give it a try, as it’s not too far from me and a straight shot down the freeway. The race offers multiple distances – so it’s great for running groups, offices and families. There is a half marathon, 10k, 5k and relay challenge. I chose to do the 10k distance with one of my friends. I was using this as a race to pace her to her first ever 10k finish.
Race Morning at Bank of Marin Run Fest
For the second week in a row, and third race, I had a 4am wake-up call, on a Sunday! I just should have been more responsible and went to bed before midnight the Saturday before. However, it was all worth it. This was a great race.
After waking up just before 4am, I threw on my race gear and headed to meet my friends I was carpooling with (save the environment you know). Luckily, her boyfriend was driving, so I got to relax a little.
On the drive down we got coffee and I ate a delicious blueberry muffin fresh from the farmer’s market in town the day before. Yum, pre-race food! We arrived at the race about 45 minutes early and had plenty of time to park (there was plenty of close parking at the college right near the start and finish) pick up our packet, and race t-shirt and get ready to run.
I was really happy to see the quality of the race shirt, bag, and water bottle. Great runner perks! It’s really handy to have a reusable bag for after the race too. Especially with all the vendors at the race. I got a lot of bars and new drinks to try out.
The Run Itself
The run started at 7am. It kicked off with the National Anthem and some motivational words from Dean Karnazes, a local ultra marathoner. It was a smaller race than I expected, so the start line wasn’t too crowded. I actually really liked that. A nice change from my Bay to Breakers experience the Sunday before.
Start line at the Bank of Marin Run Fest
Pre race selfies with fellow BibRAVE Pro, Elizabeth (she ran the half marathon)!
Making sure our pre race photo is on point!
The start was perfect weather, just a little below 60 degrees. I felt a rain drop or two, but none after the first mile. The course for the 10k started with a small hill and continued with a steady down hill and fairly flat course for 3 miles out. At the turn around point I realized the entire three miles to the finish would be up those same downhills from before. I mentally prepared myself for the climbs.
I was pacing my friend Alex to her first 10k finish, so I stuck with her and encouraged her the full three miles back. There was a long, slow climb and then a steep hill to the finish. Once you are about 0.3 miles away, you run around their sports field at the college and straight to the finish. I’ve never been more excited to see a finish line!
I ended up coming in 4th in my age group – not bad. Now I kind of wish I had pushed myself – I may have gotten 2nd place. There’s always next year!
At the finish we were treated to a sweet finisher’s medal, Nuun and water. After a short walk across the field to the parking lot, we were surprised with a lot more sponsor gifts. All the booths were giving out drinks, bars, passes to fitness studios and sunglasses. I stocked up on some hydration and food staples. There was even a Snack Shack! Here they gave away full size samples of their bars and you could look at art from local artists. It was pretty cool. Obviously I’m excited to eat. But hey, I deserved it at this point. I’d already been up for 5 hours, run 6.2 miles, and it was only 8am!
After hanging out at the race finish for a while, snacking on everything in sight, and chatting with exhibitors, I, of course, had to involve myself in the Orange Theory Fitness Rowing Challenge. I was the strongest girl that had participated yet – woohoo! Those weight sessions are paying off!
All in all – this race was one of the best I have been to this month as far as organization, ease of packet pick-up and sponsor swag at the finish. Everyone also seemed really excited to be there and be involved which is a huge plus!
I absolutely plan on running this race again. It lived up to the “Run Fest” name! Maybe I will even try the half marathon next year. Stay tuned!
So happy to be done!
Gotta do a good photo bomb 🙂