2013 3M Half Marathon Race Recap

Austin’s 3M Half Marathon is one of my favorite races and I couldn’t think of a better way to kick off racing in 2013. I mean, with an elevation chart like this, how could you go wrong?3M Half Marathon Elevation ChartThe temps on race morning were 35-40ish. Race start was scheduled for 6:45am, so we were parked by 6:25 and made the short (windy!) walk to the race site shortly after. It really wouldn’t have felt cold that morning – the weather was actually PERFECT – but the wind made it worse than it actually was.

3M Pre-Race with Paulaphoto courtesy of Paula

We dropped speedy Paula off near the 2:10 pacer and headed to the back of the line where we’d be able to settle in to our “fun run” pace.

3M Pre-Race with Bradphoto courtesy of Paula

We had absolutely no time goals for this race (although secretly I wanted to get Brad in under 3 hrs, which would be ~30 minute PR) and since it was only his second half marathon, we were planning to just run and have fun.

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from the 3M Half Marathon Facebook Page

3M Half Marathon Course Map

3M is a point-to-point race. It starts in North Austin at the Arboretum, right in front of NXNW Restaurant on Stonelake Boulevard, and runs south through Shoal Creek, along Mopac, past the University of Texas, and finishes just north of the State Capitol.

It’s by no means a scenic course, but the elevation more than makes up for it. The first nine miles are “mostly” downhill. I say mostly because there are a few minor uphills but you hardly feel them. The elevation map 3M provides is a little bit different than the one from my Garmin:

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For the most part, the course was exactly the same as last year. Except for one thing:

3M Half Marathon Course 2012 vs 2013

In 2012, 3M was held on the last weekend of January. This year, it was held on January 13, which happened to fall on move-in weekend for the University of Texas. Rather than continuing down Duval and running through campus as usual, we made a left onto 26th, right on Red River, and then a right on MLK to take us back towards the finish line. Unfortunately, this added an unwelcomed hill around mile 11. If there was a spot we struggled, it was certainly during this stretch. My legs were pretty fatigued once we made the turn onto Red River and the downhill didn’t feel as easy as it should have.

Paula finished quite a bit before us (you need to read the speed demon’s race recap) so she stationed herself near the finish where she could see us come in.

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We managed to sneak in under 3 hours, landing Brad a new PR!

And I’m borrowing this one from MarathonFoto in all it’s watermarked glory because I like it but not will-pay-$34.95-for-it like it.3M Half Marathon Finisher Photo

And then a non-stolen photo (unless you count me jacking it from Paula) of her and I before brunch:

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And the standard post-race shot with fellow Austin Distance Challenge runners, Jeanette & Trinity:

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Yet again 3M put on a great race! With roughly 7,000 runners, it’s the perfect size – not too small, not too large. The race start is self-seeded and everyone seemed to line up accordingly. Water stops were well-stocked and had plenty of volunteers. APD did a great job of blocking off the streets and rerouting traffic so we could get our 13.1 miles in that morning. We waited less than 5 minutes to hop on a shuttle back up north to grab our cars, so that process was efficient as well. Absolutely no complaints from us!

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If you’re looking for a January race which pretty much guarantees you a fast finish & PR, the 3M Half Marathon is one worth looking into! Registration opens June 1st for next year’s race, which will be held on January 19, 2014.

2011 3M Half Marathon Race Recap

2012 3M Half Marathon Race Recap

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10 Comments

  1. Jan 19, you say? *evil grin*
    So I’m a little bummed about the course change. I would have LOVED to run through UofT. Isn’t that the school with the clock tower that people used to commit suicide on? Stupid move in day. Disapprove!
    That was actually going to be one of the things I wanted to see had Fabian actually came in town and we stayed longer. Good thing you took me to Hopdoddy to make up for it. 🙂

  2. Guess what is on the exact same day… again? Whomp Whomp.
    Tara @ texasrunnergirl.com recently posted…Race Recap: My second marathon, Chevron Houston MarathonMy Profile

    • Nooooo! Is it really?! I thought since they changed the date again it would still be far enough out from Austin to race 3M AND avoid the conflict with Houston. Well crap. 🙁 that sucks!

  3. I’m hoping to run this next year, it sounds like you guys had a great race.
    Steph @ Steph Runs On recently posted…Music Monday – Disney Time!My Profile

  4. congrats on the race! a PR is the best feeling!

  5. I love Austin and I really like that elevation chart! What a great 13.1! Congrats on your race and helping Brad to a new PR. I won’t pay those MarathonFoto prices either!
    Alison @ racingtales recently posted…Infinit Custom Nutrition Review and GiveawayMy Profile

  6. This race sounds AMAZING!!! I could use a nice downhill course to break 2 hours! If we’re in Cali and getting to Austin next year is easy, I may have to keep this one in mind!
    Amanda @ Running On Waffles recently posted…An Athlete’s RegretMy Profile

  7. Pingback: 2013 LIVESTRONG Austin Half Marathon Race RecapMelissa Runs

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