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  • Writer's pictureSamantha Andrews

Mount Dora Half Marathon 2019

Disclaimer: I received an entry into the Mount Dora Half Marathon as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out to find and write race reviews!”

My 2019 race schedule ended at the Mount Dora Half Marathon on Dec 22 in Mount Dora, FL. This was my first time running this race. Mount Dora is small town about 30 minutes south of Ocala, FL. Since I spending majority of my Christmas vacation in Gainesville, FL the location could have been more perfect.

The Mount Dora race series consists of a 5k (Sat-Dec 21) and the half marathon (Sun-Dec 22). I didn't run the 5k this year. The half marathon was Christmas themed, complete with Santa Clause and a Snowman. This race was my first Christmas-like race. So how was it?

Packet pick up

Packet pick was located at a small pavilion in downtown Mount Dora, about half a mile from the start. There was plenty of free parking on street and many cute shops in the area. Pick up was quick and easy. We received our bib and tee-shirts. A few vendors were selling running good. Bill Rodgers, former Boston and NYC marathon winner, was signing books and taking pictures with participants. Shannon C. and I were able to snap a picture with Bill.

Race Day

Nothing makes a race super fun more than rain. Yes, it rained throughout the entire 13.1 miles. Thankfully, it was mostly sprinkling, but it was still rain.

I was at the tail end of my December bug, so I ran 30:30 intervals so I could breathe and walk at the end of the race. Mount Dora is like running in ATL, there are are plenty of rolling hills. I really liked running near all the bodies of water. The finish was beautifully decorated with Christmas relics. I ran a sub 3 and was very glad to finish. The medal was also really cute. The post race party had donut holes and fruit for the finishers.

Overall, I really enjoyed the race and may run it next year. My goal next year to improve my time. The race was a beautiful way to end my 2019 racing season.

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