I ran the Barksdale Air Force Base Half Marathon on Sept. 19 as a portion of my 17-mile training run for the day. My goal was to take it slowly and save up enough energy to do 4 more miles afterward. The day was warm but not too hot or humid, so that was a plus.
Pictures from this race are few because it took place on an Air Force Base, and I was scared to take pictures due to all the security around. I’m sure it would have been fine for the most part, but oh well.
My husband’s family lives in Bossier City, where the AFB is located, so we stayed with them over the weekend. The day started with me driving in the pitch black darkness out to the base. I went to the wrong entrance the first time, and was told by the security person there that I had to gain access at another gate. That was a little distressful, but I managed to find the right gate and was let on base with no problem. I parked and picked up my bib and chip, got a metal detector wand waved around me, and waited for the race to start. There was also a 5K, but it seemed like more participants were running the half.
The race started, and for the first 5 miles we ran down a really boring and barren airstrip. Finally we started to run by some airplanes, and then we came back through the starting area and went a different direction to run around the base. The buildings and houses reminded me of the LSU campus for some reason, I guess the color scheme was the same, as well as the pretty trees.
There wasn’t too much in the way of spectators, but some residents had set up in their yards and I even got a very welcome Popsicle from an excited little boy.
I kept a steady pace the entire way and finished in 2:22:33, which was good for 13th place out of 19 in my new age group, 30-39. I didn’t stick around too long after finishing, just grabbed a water and then made my way back to my in-laws’ house. I ran 4 miles around their neighborhood to get to 17 for the day.
I would probably do the race again in the future, even though the first part is a little boring – it is definitely different than your typical race, and it was otherwise well supported and a good little race.