Today’s blog post is from Carlie Pipe.
December approaches and my half marathon training is intensifying! Right now I’m reflecting on my incredible Reggae Marathon experience from 2018. Spoiler alert: I went to win ya know!
Friends who participated in the event through the years told tales of an amazing event. The vibes. The music. The people.
So, as someone who has run in numerous Caribbean destinations, I had an idea of what I was getting into when I decided to compete.
The Reggae Marathon experience surpassed my expectations.
Like every race day, on the morning of the event I was bubbling with nerves, but the atmosphere was so refreshing. New sights. New sounds. Teems of people crowding around the start line with one common goal: finish strong and have an irie time!
Runners from all over the world (Canada, Japan, Germany and more) were well entertained by music, mascots, stilt men and performers who all brought the real energy and spirit of Jamaica to this unique destination marathon experience.
There’s a 10K, half-marathon and marathon; I chose the half-marathon. The course is flat and fast so I set high expectations for myself to perform. I went through the first 10K precisely on target. Water stops were perfectly adequate but my favourite “stops” along the course were the “music stops” parked vehicles blaring sweet reggae music from oversized sound systems. It definitely kept me skanking down the course.
In the second half of the race, my pace slowed but with fellow runners and enthusiastic spectators encouraging me, I still finished an amazing run. Though I went through a bad patch after the 10K mark, I still worked my way into first place and after the final turn, I pushed to keep my lead strong until the finish.
Breaking the tape and getting the win at the 2018 Reggae Half-Marathon was a great achievement. After the race, I chilled on the beach with dozens of other runners, all of us basking in the shared experience, taking photos or getting a massage. There is plenty food, entertainment and Negril’s beaches are nothing short of perfect. This event is a “must-do” destination marathon – starting and finishing in pure paradise. Negril is a gorgeous strip of hotels and restaurants that will keep you entertained after the race.
Eat, drink and be merry to your heart’s content! And take home a medal or two.
Reggae Marathon yuh bad enuff!