Sea. Wheeze. The most magical run to exist.
First off, I would like to say that I have no idea how I was able to attend this race. Luck I suppose. For those of you who don't know SeaWheeze is a half marathon that is sponsored by Lululemon and is known for its positive energy. Yoga. Run. Party. Last November these bibs went on sale, and all 10,000 were sold out in under 5 minutes. Crazy, I know. Not only did I get a bib but Evan and my best friend Taylor did as well! Fast forward a few months and we then got a bib for Evan's mom and Taylor's dad from people selling their bib (never would I ever). Moral of the story, I got to attend this race with some of my favorite people.
I had run 13 miles before, 2 years before to be exact, so I was a little worried about how training was going to go this time around. I definitely had my bad and good runs, but overall I would say I was ready for the race this past August! Not to say that I wasn't nervous because I definitely was. Fast forward again through training (probably best to skip those stories) to race week. Evan and I are pretty busy people so we honestly didn't have much time to worry about actually running it. Watching countless hype videos and constantly looking at the merch teasers to see how much money I was going to spend did not help us contain our excitement at all.
August 9th we hopped on an airplane to Vancouver, Canada. A couple layovers later and we ended up in our Air BandB which was darling. The couple that was renting their home to us were such delights, and they even let us borrow their cruiser bikes (note, you should be a skilled biker if you plan on biking in downtown Vancouver)! When we woke up the next morning we expected to see the mountains out our window but they were nowhere in sight. Turns out they were covered by smoke from the wildfires that had been taking place, which broke my heart. Luckily it had rained on our trip so we were able to see the stunning view. It was insane to see these beautiful, giant mountains pop out of nowhere. After a few days of exploring the city, it was time to prepare for the merch line!
The store of the limited edition SeaWheeze products opened up at 8 AM on Friday, the day before the race. This really isn't like any merchandise line you are thinking of. To give you a better idea, we got in line at 9 PM Thursday night and we were already 227th in line. People had been camping out since Wednesday night, this was way more serious than we expected. Not to mention, we were extremely unprepared. That night the temperature dropped to about 45-50 degrees and all we had was what we wore. As we were trying to get a glorious nights sleep on the cushiony cement, we began to freeze. We started wrapping each other up in our yoga mats that we brought to sit on, and stretching out my scarf as far as we could to pretend it was warming us up. Not to mention I was in shorts (I clearly wasn't thinking). Taylor, the Floridian, was in a Patagonia jacket and leggings and ended up with more of my scarf then I did. Luckily for us, we made a friend in line that covered us with her blanket when she wasn't sleeping. It was literally a lifesaver.
Obviously we weren't getting much sleep in these conditions, so we had to think of creative things to do to keep us entertained. Most of the time it resulted in acro yoga and Evan wondering aimlessly, but Lululemon had us covered around midnight. They showed up blasting music out of the Lululemon test truck, getting us pumped for the store, and hand delivering us delicious pizza. Who knew Lululemeon pizza was a thing? Not me, but man was it tasty (and warm) when we were waiting in line. Come 6 AM, everyone starts packing up their stuff and preparing for the race to all the beautiful clothes. We move forward and finally then move into the building at 8 AM! They started off the store kick-off with a guided meditation and then let in 100 people at a time in 10-minute waves. People began to scream, run into the store, and grab as many items as they could to make sure they could get what they wanted before it was sold out. I lucked out by getting all the items I had dreamed of getting and spent too much money (I will be sharing a blog on what I purchased at the store). It was quite the experience.
Friday, I thawed out my cold limbs with some yoga and a nap. Then, it was race day. August 12th, I ran 13.1 miles - WOOO! I would like to first note that I didn't stop one time to walk, not even when I ran past two baby seals. Anyways, I can't really put into words how stunning this run was, but I will try. The crisp air with a hint of warm wind was the ultimate running weather. We first started the run in the city, past Lululemon Headquarters, and then for the remainder of the race, we went to the sea wall. Running along the sea wall was beyond breathtaking. You would turn the corner and be blown away by the scenery every time. There were about 20 stations set up throughout the race to fill you up with some energy to keep going until you hit the finish line. Firefighters spraying you, a boxing ring, mermaids, people on paddleboards in the water, beautiful lady men, cycling clubs, and so much more! It was 100% a highlight of my year.
Overall, this race was literally unlike anything I have experienced and I am 100% honest in saying that. I am realizing that I can talk on and on about the amazing experiences that I had in Vancouver, so trust me there is more to come. The energy feeding off of one another was such a humbling experience, and I can't wait to do it all over again. Well, I hope I get the honor to run it again. If you are thinking of joining the fight to get a bib, I HIGHLY suggest it.