Wednesday, September 4, 2013

running mackinac

this past weekend brandon and i headed up north for the 10th annual mackinac bridge run. this is a special run because you can only gain entry via a lottery system and brandon happened to be one of the lucky winners! (yes, i was pretty jealous i didn't get picked but maybe next year, right??) 

i used the opportunity of going up north to get in my long run for the week on mackinac island, which happens to be exactly 8 miles around - the exact distance of my run. it's almost like it was meant to be ;)

this was my first chance to show off all my new oiselle gear and i really took advantage of the opportunity, as you'll see in the pictures!

waiting for the ferry to head over to mackinac island

mackinac island, for those of you who don't know, doesn't allow any motorized vehicles on the island. the only means of transportation are horses, bike and foot. the main town is also only .25 miles long (or so), so this makes it a great place to run because the rest of the island is relatively uncrowded!

just before the start of the run, mile 0 at the marina

even on an overcast day, the island is still gorgeous

running by the occasional horse on the quiet side of the island was
something fun to look forward to

dodging horses in town is a little more challenging...

the hardest part about running mackinac island might be the amazing smells of fudge that fill the little stretch of town as you stroll through. there are multiple fudge shops within .25 miles so smelling the fudgy amazingness is pretty unavoidable. i had a post run snack of sea salted dark chocolate caramel fudge and it did not disappoint!

post run - all smiles!

that night, brandon and i went to the race pasta party where we also got to pick up his race packet. they didn't serve any gluten free pasta so we had to go out for dinner #2 afterwards. for the record, village inn in st. ignace has great gluten free pizza!

us at the pasta dinner

brandon showing off his race shirt

at 4:30am on labor day, brandon and i were up and heading to the race drop off so racers could catch the shuttle to the start line. wheelers started at 6:35am and the runners were off at 6:45. it was cold and windy but that didn't keep spectators from coming out and cheering on the participants!

brandon took this picture from the bridge

brandon also took this picture

the race wasn't timed, but from my watch, i clocked the first runner coming in around 25 minutes (the bridge is 4.5 miles long). the first half of the run is uphill and the second half downhill and you could really tell the difference in elevation from brandon's splits! speedy second half for sure.

brandon coming down the home stretch

all smiles at the finish line

brandon loved every minute of this race and i was proud of how he ran. i think i will keep putting my hat in the ring to see if i can do it someday! after the run, the bridge is open up to walkers from 7am - 11am. over 40,000 people were expected to participate in the walk which is incredible! i did the walk more than a few years ago and it is one experience i think every michigander should do.

though a busy weekend, brandon and i had a lot of fun. we got to celebrate his birthday in one of our favorite places and got to share two great run experiences with each other. it doesn't get much better than that!

what were highlights from your labor day weekend? do you think you'd ever run or walk over a large bridge like the mackinac bridge?


  1. Wow, what a GORGEOUS place! How cool that there are no cars?! It looks so cool and refreshing - I am so over the fact that it's still 80+ degrees and so humid here that I'm melting! It sounds like you both had a great run and a great trip!

  2. Amy @ Long Drive JourneySeptember 5, 2013 at 9:19 AM

    Well I've walked over the Brooklyn Bridge. Does that count? Sounds like a beautiful place. I've never heard of it before. And girl, you look so strong in that picture you posted of you running! It's fierce!

  3. I think walking over the Brooklyn Bridge counts! I've only seen that done on Sex and the City :) FIERCE! Now I feel like I'm channeling my inner America's Next Top Model! Did you ever watch that show?

    And yes, Mackinac is gorgeous. When the sun is out, the water is blue and green and you'd swear you were somewhere tropical! Just amazing.

  4. Yes - SO gorgeous! A little gem I wish more people knew about!! I am thankful we seemed to break that 80 degree humidity streak. It feel so much better here now that its in the low 70's! Hopefully your heat streak breaks soon!

  5. I'd love to visit Mackinac someday! I'm a new Michigan Transplant and have heard so much about it! This looks like fun! :) I haven't run over a big bridge...but I will be in the Detroit International half marathon this October!... I've walked the Brooklyn Bridge...but half of it was boarded up because of renovations!

  6. Oooh the Detroit half! You are obviously doing the international version, then! So exciting! I really want to do the half, but the one that stays in Detroit only. I'm arrived of running through that tunnel! :/

  7. Yup Yup! The International one! It'll be my first ever half too! Eep! haha yeah the tunnel makes me a bit nervous...but I'm curious as to what it would be like to be in an underwater tunnel and not in a car...!

  8. I have never been that far N in MI, I would LOVE to go there. I have heard such amazing things! Plus, your running pictures are beautiful! AND, you are looking so great!

  9. The northern parts of Michigan and just magical. I'm sure you'd fall in love. Nothing like what you see around Ann Arbor and such.

    Thank you, btw, for the lovely compliment! I was just b*tching the other moment about how bad I feel about myself. I should look at those running pictures to remind me of how strong I am, instead!

  10. So jealous!
    I signed up for the 8 miler on the island but ended up having a conflict with a Crossfit event so CF won over.. ;)

    I used to be in a relationship with someone whose grandma had a house on the island.. and then he got a job up there, so I spent about every other weekend for a good period of time just spending every free moment up there. It's so beautiful and so unlike anywhere else!!

    Looks like you had an amazing time!

  11. I want to do that 8 miler! Can't blame you for following your passion though :)

    You are so right that its unlike anywhere else. I can't imagine living there or spending extended time there - maybe I just don't know how to relax enough yet!

  12. Cool this one always looked so fun!


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