Monday, March 7, 2016

Race Review: Myrtle Beach Marathon

First, the abbreviated version:

It was 26.2 miles. It was flat. I got some swag. My feet hurt afterwards.

Donut did not come with the swag.

Now a little more detail.

Many of my running events here in Myrtle have been due to knowing excellent people and some good karma.
The Myrtle Beach Marathon is one such event. (Thank you Wiki #42, Down-Downs for us both.)

The MBM (that's what we'll be calling this event now, MBM) started at the Pelican Stadium here in town.

The Pelican Stadium is directly across the street from a large retail center known as Broadway At The Beach. So parking (often an issue at some events) was pretty tit. This is huge plus as I've heard of having to be bussed to some races. Bullocks.

This is a pretty big marathon, by the way. Not Boston big, but still a few thousand runners. It's nice to know there's that many people that like to run.

We were able to get a pretty convenient parking space so I was able to sit in the nice warm car until about 10min before my 6:30 gun time. I don't like being cold. It was around 40 some odd degrees at the start. Too cold, too cold, too cold. I'm wearing sweat pants and a hoody. Too cold.

Heather finally made me get out of the car at 6:20 as she was there to see some of her running group off for the 13.1 (also 6:30 gun time). Dedicating her own personal time, she leads the running club at the gym she works at. She's taken at least 3 runners there Couch to 13.1 in four months. All sub 2:30!

I know many people do, but I don't get pre-race jitters. I do however have a pretty active digestive system. So I need to use the porta-jons whenever there's an opportunity. Our walk in brought us past a small cluster of shitters where I kissed Heather adieu to go do her thing while I queued up at the head.

Well, guess who missed to starting gun?
Ya. That's me in the bright orangey pinkish shirt on the right. Very last starter of the marathon.

At least I didn't have to hear the National Anthem for the billionth time.

I mentioned this was a pretty big marathon. Weaving my way through the milling throngs was pretty interesting. I am not fast, it wasn't like I had to work my way up to 3hr pace group, but I am faster than the 13.1 walkers. It's always a bit hairy at the start of any event.

I only passed one or two idiots listening to their music without headphones. I hate those people. Common courtesy is such a lost concept these days.

The marathon route:

Courtesy of Myrtle Beach Marathon

Why the hell would I type out the route when I can show you a map?
I will describe to you a bit however, in particular order.

Ocean Boulevard is the main drag in downtown Myrtle Beach. We ran along that for quite a few miles. It's nice, but honestly, you cant really see the beach very well. There's hotels and houses and shit between you and the beach. I'm not knocking it, just saying don't think this is ocean front.

We ran through some ghetto-y parts of Myrtle too. Nothing where I was afraid of getting shot! But the kind of area that makes me really glad that Heather and I do have what we have.

We ran along some nice bike path, in fact I'm pretty damn sure we ran the opposite direction on the same path in the Mini back in October.

Along the route there were sporadic musicians and/or speakers playing tunes. Even though I personally hate 99.9% of any music you'll hear, it was helpful in breaking up the mileage. And it was really great of the musicians to come out and play on a chilly morning.
There was one band though!! It was the last band on the route (I think), was it at Oleander and 48th? Who cares, but they were playing Cherry Pie by Warrant. Right on. (Ya, it's a silly song, but it's Hair Metal not country or rap, so it's a win.)

Here's a link to Uncle Tom's Cabin by Warrant. Way better song.

Every two miles there were water stops. Plenty of friendly volunteers handing out water and PowerAde. There was food at some of the later stops, but nothing until well past the half way.

Three singles and a deuce. The porta-jon placement on course was definitely adequate for my needs.

The finish corral was very well done I thought. There was plenty of space for the many spectators and of course that wonderful vibe you get when finishing a marathon. I was too busy looking around for Heather to notice too much, but there were some banners/flags and such hanging about. Nice finish line.

After finishing I got my medal from a very confused teenage girl (I probably frightened her somehow), then made my way through the food tent. Apples, chips, PowerAde, H2O, bagels, the usual.

There's never enough food at Road events.

I wasn't really prepared for this event. Ya ya, I've been running, but all on trail and nothing over 10miles since One Epic Run back in December. I also ran in brand new shoes...So this marathon pretty much beat the hell out of me.
There was a big festival area at the finish. I was just too cold and beaten, Heather had the boys, so I didn't check it out.
And I feel almost an injustice to both myself and the festival for not participating, but I know a lot of my friends enjoyed it. And had beer! That I missed!
The House of Blues in North Myrtle Beach offered an After Party which I also did not attend. Although it sounded fun, it was too far of a drive me personally.

The MBM was part of great weekend that also included a Family Fun Run (1mile) and a night time 5k (both sold separately). All the festivities were centered around Broadway and/or the stadium. And the Fun Run takes participants through the aquarium.


You can rego for the 2017 MBM soon for only 65 bones. Which isn't really too bad a of price. But I did hear the 2016 race cost 130 a week or two before the race. So if you want a positive Myrtle Beach experience, rego early, book a hotel and spend the weekend.


  1. I love going down for the MB marathon, it's about the only time I choose to go to MB. Glad you had a fun time! it is always a bigger race than I'm expecting, but I still set my PR there a few years ago. The second half of the course is really boring.

  2. I don't blame you there, not a whole lot of reason to come to MB. And it was a bigger race than I'd expected too. Lots of BQs going on.

  3. It was always a little bit hard for me to ran. But after I started to ran with my friend I made a great step. I plan to ran the spring marathon this year.