The Bellevue Ghost

Don’t you like the title? It is so catchy! This was not a Disneyland nor a Universal Studios ride. It was an actual race! I say it was ghostly in terms of number of runners. There were only about 6-7 of us half marathoners, and maybe 20 to 25 full participants. But it was a good race. Challenging day due to heat and humidity. Added to that was we got off-course and ended up running another half mile or so uphill. It is called “the blind following the blind”. The half marathoners followed the course of the marathoners for the first 5-6 KM instead of following the white arrows marked on the ground.

Bellevue is a beautiful suburban neighbourhood. Lots of trees and a very quiet neighbourhood.

As usual, with my previous Seattle area races, we drove down very early in the morning at about 4:30 a.m. Many people would question why so early, let alone at all. For the love of running, runners do anything.

We arrived at the designated parking lot with about 5 min. to spare. No potties…and no bibs. At 7:04am, we were off. I kind of like the old-fashioned way of racing. So simple, so basic. I would call it self-sufficient.

At about 11 KM I merged back with the other half marathoners. So now we were all on the same course. The RD drove around to make sure all the runners were okay. At about that point, we had encountered one aid station.

We continued on. However, we had to stop at a number of crossing lights. Other than that, it was a good course.

Throughout the whole course we only saw one or two random non-racing runners, so a very quiet Sunday morning. I looked at my watch, and with about half mile to go, there was this slight uphill. At that point, I was really feeling the heat. I felt exhausted. I thought I couldn’t run anymore.

I turned my focus to this building crane, but even still, I kind of slowed my pace to walk/jog. I was hot, and I was thirsty… Because I knew I had already run more than the designated distance, my brain just turned off, telling me I had run the distance already.

I finally made it back to the finish line in one piece. Reported my time, and briefly chatted with the fellow I ran with. Got into our respective cars and moved on with the day. Yay, another half done!

I really don’t mind these smaller races. First, it is much more personable and secondly, I have come to the point where I really don’t need a medal nor a shirt anymore in exchange for the thrill of completing another race.

Memories are more important! The key was I had fun, I had run a different course, and I am stacking my stats. I am happier than ever!

Hope you are having as much fun out on the roads as I am! Keep on running, keep on smiling!!

Out on the roads, there is fitness and self-discovery, and the persons we were destined to be.

– Dr. George Sheehan


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