Weekend Wrap-Up: Franklin Half Marathon


The Franklin Half Marathon (that’s actually run in Leiper’s Fork)

It was a steamy morning with lots of fog.  This is the parking field.

It’s a local race and so fun to meet up with my friends!

This definitely wasn’t a “goal” race for me and I used it as part of my training for the North Fork 50 later this month.  There was a little congestion at the start and it quickly thinned out.

This course is notoriously hot and hilly.  Every year I wonder why we run it!  I was soaked in sweat by the finish.

Temperature when I finished!


I think the 666 elevation gain is a sign!

I’m super proud of our group!!!!


  • Coffee and a Picky Bar at home.
  • Cocogo in my handheld during the race. Use code: JENCHOOSESJOY (all caps) for 10% off
  • 1 Gu at mile 8


  • It’s a local race with lots of friends!
  • It’s close to home, 2,000 runners, and logistically very easy.
  • Water-Bags on the course.
  • Encouraging and cheerful volunteers
  • Peach Truck Peaches at the finish line!


  • It’s hot and hilly.  Seriously, did I mention that it’s hot and hilly?
  • Because of the heat, they ran out of water at finish.
  • The porta potty lines were super long and folks resorted to peeing in the fields.
  • No towels or napkins at the finish.

That afternoon, I was a bum.  I made a big misto and watched McFarland (loved it)!

And ate entirely too many tortilla chips at dinner, because…salt!  Warm restaurant chips are heaven in a basket.


My ultra training called for back-to-back runs, so I met Corrie and CB at Percy Warner for a trail run!

It was another hot one and I inhaled a big bowl of mango at home.

Before our dinner reservation, we stopped to visit with sweet friends.  It’s always fun to see runners in “real clothes!” (Plus a photobomb by Mr. Huffman!)

And lastly a (blurry) toast to the end of full weekend…cheers!

Peak and Pit of your weekend?  Peak: After being out of town, I was so excited to catch-up with friends!  Pit: The heat kicked my arse!

Mangos: yay or nay?  I keep trying to love them, but they’re not my favorite.

Have you used the Water-Bags during a race?  Do you like them? I like them because it’s easier to drink and run at the same time AND I would use the bag on my neck to cool off.

Share your race or long run from the weekend?


Join the Conversation

  • I’m in Italy….so peaks of my weekend have been running through Rome, eating and eating and eating carbs while drinking lots of wine….wine at restaurants here is much cheaper than at the states…..What I miss about the US?? COFFEE!! Yes, it’s good coffee here, but I’d have to get 6 larges here to equal a Starbucks grande….I know no one feels bad for me right now, but I really do miss a large coffee.

    • http://jenchoosesjoy.com jenchoosesjoy

      I understand missing certain “comforts” of home. Have an incredible rest of your trip!!!!!

  • AmandaM

    Congrats on the race! That looked super challenging – and then following it up with 2.5 hours the next day?? Superstar:)

    I’m the same with fresh mango- it almost makes my tongue sting?? Does that happen to you? Odd. I do sometimes like the dried (no added suger) – if you soak a slice of dried in hot water and let it sit, the mango flavors the water and the slice plumps up. Pretty tasty . Happy Monday!

    • http://jenchoosesjoy.com jenchoosesjoy

      I totally know what you mean with stinging my tongue!!

  • thesimplepeach

    You are a beast with all this elevation gain in the heat/humidity! Peak: painting my kitchen cabinets and having a stellar x-training sesh yesterday. Happy Monday!

    • http://jenchoosesjoy.com jenchoosesjoy

      Sounds like you had a very full weekend!!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/675869933 Al Frazier

    You ran the Franklin 1/2 #likeaboss as usual. I’m just shocked we finished strong. Hands down, it was the toughest 1/2 I’ve ever done. I’m so glad you watched McFarland USA! It’s one of our favorite movies. Abby loves it!

    • http://jenchoosesjoy.com jenchoosesjoy

      It’s such a great movie! Abby’s endorsement verifies that! Congrats on your strong race…it was tough out there.

  • Sarah @SarahRuns26

    I like the flavor of mangos alot, but the texture can throw me off a bit sometimes. That’s a HOT race! Yikes! I can see why they ran out of water! Peak of my weekend – getting some really good sleep! Pit – having to work on Saturday morning!

    Have a great Monday, Jen!

    • http://jenchoosesjoy.com jenchoosesjoy

      Feeling rested after the weekend is the best!!!! Have a great week. ?

  • http://ultrafootpath.blogspot.com Melissa

    Congrats on the 1/2! You are a total beast!! :)
    -Peak:family vacation,Pit:family vacation over
    -I L.O.V.E mango’s!!! I eat dried mango’s on longer runs. I love to juice mango’s too (w spinach, delicious!)
    -My long run was on Sunday and it was 7 miles!! My longest run to date :)

    • http://jenchoosesjoy.com jenchoosesjoy

      Ooh…I never thought to juice mangos. Thanks for that suggestion!!! And, congrats on your awesome long run!

      • http://ultrafootpath.blogspot.com Melissa

        Thank you!
        Yeah I juice mango/spinach/orange. It’s amazing!

  • http://idonteatthat.wordpress.com Jamie

    I ran 10 miles on Saturday and the humidity was KILLER. I have a similar race I run the last weekend in June every year. It’s hot and hilly, and it doesn’t start until 830! Haha. But every year I go back and run it : ) Great job with your runs this weekend. Hope you have a fabulous Monday!!

    • http://jenchoosesjoy.com jenchoosesjoy

      8:30 is such a late start!! We’re just gluttons for punishment!?

  • Jen B.

    Ugh, how do you maintain your pace in the heat/humidity?! I’m struggling with it in D.C. and I get so discouraged when I look at my Garmin and it’s a full minute or so slower than my normal pace.

    • http://jenchoosesjoy.com jenchoosesjoy

      I’m definitely slower right now!! It happens to me every summer when the heat and humidity hit. I just slow down and try to remember how great I’ll feel in the fall!!

    • http://milesandblessings.com/ milesandblessings

      Don’t get discouraged…we all slow down with the heat! :). I am in MD and the humidity is real! Give your body a chance to adjust and then just change your pace expectations…I am guessing no one can run at the fall training pace during the summer :)!

      • http://jenchoosesjoy.com jenchoosesjoy

        Such great advice!!!

  • http://milesandblessings.com/ milesandblessings

    Holy cow did you run that 2.5 hour run the day after your 1/2?! That is AMAZING!!!! My husband is training for his first 50 soon!!!! I have never heard of those water bags before…looks interesting! I am in MD and the humidity and heat are definitely a factor….although I like them a TON better than snow and ice :)

    • http://jenchoosesjoy.com jenchoosesjoy

      It was nice to be able to grab a water bag and carry it with me. Although some folks had a tough time drinking from them.

  • http://www.dixieruns.com Maddie @ Dixie Runs

    Looks like a fun race with your friends!! Peak of my weekend: going to a college friend’s wedding and then arriving at the beach for a week long vacation! Pit: spending 15 hours driving. Loooooove mangos.

    • http://jenchoosesjoy.com jenchoosesjoy

      Enjoy your time at the beach!!!!

  • http://pacewithgraceblog.com/ [email protected]

    Peak was Saturday night dinner and cocktails with friends while watching the sunset over the lake. So beautiful! Pit was my soreness and tiredness Saturday and Sunday. My long run of 12 miles was tough but I got it done.
    I do like mangoes- they have to be ripe though otherwise I’m not much of a fan.
    Way to go with your hot and hilly half! That’s tough but you rocked it!

    • http://jenchoosesjoy.com jenchoosesjoy

      Great job on your long run!!!!

  • misszippy1

    Congrats on a tough, hot, hilly race! It looked beautiful and it sounds like great training for what you have coming up.

    We watched McFarland last night–loved it!

    • http://jenchoosesjoy.com jenchoosesjoy

      McFarland was so good!!!

  • http://gretchruns.wordpress.com Gretchen | Gretchruns

    That sounds like a miserable! I had the opposite type of half this weekend- the course was completely flat and it was super windy. I’m used to running lots of hills so the flat kicked MY arse! lol! Your race was awesome though and that picture is fantastic!

    • http://jenchoosesjoy.com jenchoosesjoy

      I know exactly what you mean!! I was so excited to run the Chicago marathon last year. I loved it, but I’ve never been that sore after a race. My body didn’t know how to handle the flat!

  • http://www.runningnreading.com Running ‘N’ Reading

    Congrats on your race, chica; that is awesome! It was definitely hot and humid out there this weekend; I’m beginning to embrace it, as I always find myself trying to do at this time of year. My peak was definitely getting to enjoy the time outdoors, in the sunshine, since I spend my weekdays in a window-less office; my pit was probably not getting as much sleep as I should have – ha! I really love mangoes, but they are so messy and hard to cut up! I can’t wait to watch McFarland; we were going to rent it this weekend and decided we had too many other things to do. Soon!

    • http://jenchoosesjoy.com jenchoosesjoy

      I really think you’ll enjoy McFarland!!

  • http://movinitwithmichelle.wordpress.com Movin’ it with Michelle

    Great job on your race!!! We watched McFarland last weekend, too! Great movie!!!!

    • http://jenchoosesjoy.com jenchoosesjoy

      Thank you!!!

  • http://www.3cheaprunners.com Michelle @ 3cheaprunners

    Yesterday I ran the Niagara Falls Women’s 1/2 marathon…and I ran by a lady wearing a “Fleet Feet” shirt…and it reminded me of you!

    • http://jenchoosesjoy.com jenchoosesjoy

      I hope you had a great race!!!

  • Desiree

    Congrats on your strong finish on your race. Ugh, I know the Heat, Hills and Humidity running outside Atlanta. My neighborhood is very hilly so I feel like a slow turtle in the summer. I do my long run during the week so my weekends can be more with the family. I did an 8 mile hill run followed by an afternoon of Kayaking on our lake. Arm workout for sure. McFarland USA was a great movie. I took my kids (who both run cross country) to see it in the theater. We loved it.

    • http://jenchoosesjoy.com jenchoosesjoy

      Kayaking is so much fun…and definitely a good workout!

  • thisrunnersrecipes

    That’s a hot race! It got almost that hot in Seattle this weekend and there was a heat advisory out. Great time especially considering the heat and the hills!
    Peak: walking around the sound in downtown Seattle and having some authentic German food.
    Pit: spending half of Saturday at the DMV for new resident stuff.

    • http://jenchoosesjoy.com jenchoosesjoy

      Spending a Saturday at the dmv sounds pretty miserable.

  • http://travisandmarilynkeys.blogspot.com Marilyn

    I am not a big fan of mango either. I always try it hoping I will like to more, but I just don’t!

    I have never heard of water bags! Interesting! I wonder if more races will start to use them?

    • http://jenchoosesjoy.com jenchoosesjoy

      I know that not everyone likes the water bags, but they’re a lot easier than cups for me!

  • http://www.minutespermile.com mary @ minutes per mile

    franklin half looked fun! though very hot and hilly, haha. champagne and mango would be on my post-race list, too!

  • http://worldoflv.wordpress.com Lauren

    I watched McFarland this weekend too!!! Great movie, those boys are incredible. Really motivated me to start my training for NYC Marathon :) can’t wait!!! Haven’t used water bags but they seem cool (pun intended!). And champagne is ALWAYS the best :)

    • http://jenchoosesjoy.com jenchoosesjoy

      I can’t believe it’s already time to start training for NYC…crazy!!

      • http://goallthemiles.wordpress.com Lauren

        I know! I’m getting anxious but still giving myself a few more weeks before I fully start. This will be my first time so I’m super excited!

  • A different Jen

    Those Water Bags are cool – never seen them before. Congrats on your great runs!

    Did a 20 mile walk this weekend. Weather was gorgeous, so that was a peak. Pit was that I hate walking. It’s long, boring, and holy crap did my knees hurt after, which never happens when I run.

    • http://jenchoosesjoy.com jenchoosesjoy

      Oh my gosh that’s a long walk!!!!

  • http://www.faithrunstheday.blogspot.com Faith @ Run the Day

    Looks like a fun weekend! My long run Saturday was exciting because I found a pace buddy in my running group and we saw a hot air balloon!

    • http://jenchoosesjoy.com jenchoosesjoy

      Woo hoo!!! That sound like a great run!

  • http://cupcakesandmiles.wordpress.com cupcakesandmiles

    Hot and hilly?! Yuck! 😉 Congrats on another strong finish!

    I always see you posting about your mango snacks; it’s refreshing to hear that you’re still not all that crazy about it. Being good is not always easy. I think I need to take a cue from you!

    • http://jenchoosesjoy.com jenchoosesjoy

      Thanks!! I figure if I keep trying it from time to time I’ll learn to like it better.

  • http://www.thegirlwhoraneverywhere.com [email protected]

    I always try to remember not to be discouraged when a hot half does not go my way…you did amazing!!! :) I wish I had trails like you do around me.. They make you so much stronger!

    I like Mango but its not my all time fave-I give that honor to watermelon!! :)

    • http://jenchoosesjoy.com jenchoosesjoy

      The watermelons are SO good right now!!!