Taking it International – Niagara Falls International Race Recap

Like all good things, it started in a bar…..

Somewhere in the aftermath of Hurricane Shamrock (The Shamrock Run back in March) we all ended up at WJ Morrissey’s talking about the Niagara Falls

 International Relay. Apparently the medals are just so awesome we had to talk about them. If you run the relay two years in a row you get two medals that fit together. They honestly were just too cool for a bunch of medal junkies to ignore. So we broke it up into two teams. Bryan and Deb were to be Team WTF (where’s the finish?) and Marc and I would be team “Running Our Masses Off” since we were both trying to do just that. (As a side note I ran this race 26 pounds lighter then when we decided on our team name, so I guess it worked!)

Expo day lead me patiently (or not) waiting in line for the bridge at Rainbow for over an hour and remembering they don’t take Ezpass. So anyway. Got there. Found Marc and cleared customs for the race. Got our lovely custom bibs followed by many fine comments about our awesome team name. Hung around the expo to meet up with Deb and her friend Cindy. Then I bounced home.

Got up late (who starts a marathon at 10AM?) and headed to the start. Wore cast off clothes for the first time. I’ve got plenty now that nothing fits me anymore. My team shirt didn’t even fit. I bought it when we signed up for the race and it looks HUGE on me. Wait til you see these pictures haha!

So we started at the Albirght-Knox Art Gallery on the US side. Deb and I cleared the chutes together and tried to catch up to our training and fellow Team Bacon member Mike. This was his first full and we wanted to stay with him. We found out much later we actually passed him and that’s why we couldnt’ find him. We spent most of our race wondering where he went. The race itself was kinda boring. Once you were over the Peace Bridge it was just running along the river. Pretty, but not much to report. Here are the highlights from our 13.1 miles.

– Running across the Peace Bridge: AWESOME! I stopped for a picture but it didn’t come out. However I got Deb in action.

It was really awesome to run into Canada.

– The signs on the Canadian side. We passed signs that read “Mashed Potatoes at the finish line” and “Beer ahead”. There were no mashed potatoes or beer. It was quite the let down.

– The negatives kinda outweighed the positives for this one. There was no aid (food/water/blankets) at the relay exchange point. We didn’t get anything until we made it to the finish 45 minutes later. They ran out of water again for the marathoners (found out from Mike and the woman begging me for my Powerade). There was also only one waterstop for the 5.5 miles we spent on the American side. Overall, just a total water fail. The finishline was pretty good despite weird food in the food bags. They were announcing well into the 6th hour.

Most of the fun came after our portion was finished. I had the most amazing pizza and frozen yogurt from one of the restaurants when we were done. Took some pictures by the falls. Then we ran back out on the course for our relay partners to run it in with them. Then we ran back out again for Mike and his friend Amy. We came across the finish all together. Mike with his daughter Oliva. We posed for holy pictures and suddenly it was time to go home. I managed to finally feel those 18 or so miles (extra 5 from running back out so many times) creep back up on me. I passed out in the car back to my car and then crashed out at 7:30 after my shower. What a long day, but like most race days~Completely Worth It~! And just think, I get to do it again next year for the other half of my medal!

Enjoy all the pictures 🙂

Marc ~ My Relay Partner
Marc and I crossing the Finish Line Together
Team WTF
Team "Running Our Masses Off"
Best finisher's photo ever. Mike and his daughter.
Mike's Superhero Pose
Team Bacon: Squeeze, (mini squeeze), Morningstar, Peameal, and Crispy
And of course...the glamor shot of the falls.
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