GORE-TEX Philadelphia Half Marathon Goals & Meet-Up

Running the GORE-TEX Philadelphia Half Marathon

Pausing for a photo opp just before a PR finish at the 2012 Philadelphia Marathon. (RunKarlaRun.com)

My bags are packed and I’m ready to go! The GORE-TEX Philadelphia Half Marathon is on Sunday, Sunday, Sunday! I’m running on behalf of Team GORE-TEX, and I’m getting really pumped to return to Philly. This will be my first trip back to the city since I ran the Philadelphia Marathon in 2012.

As I detailed in my last training update, I’ve decided to run the half instead of the marathon. But that hasn’t dampened my excitement at all. It’s funny, I’m not looking at this as a big goal race anymore–since I missed three key weeks of training and have only been back at it for two weeks. Yet I’m still getting the familiar butterflies in my stomach when I think about standing in the cold, bib pinned in place, ready to run. I love that I still get nervous with anticipation for every race. As we head into Thanksgiving, it reminds me to be grateful for every start. Especially when they look like this!

Philadelphia Marathon and Philadelphia Half Marathon Start

The Philadelphia Marathon and Half Marathon Start. (Photo: Philadelphia Marathon)

GORE-TEX Philadelphia Half Marathon Goals

So what are my goals for this race? They’re pretty simple:

1) Run as hard as I can.

I know this won’t be a PR race for me. I’m not even close to PR shape. But I still want to run the hardest race I’m able to on Sunday.

2) Finish strong

In other words: don’t crash and burn. I want to run smart: go out conservatively, hang on through the hills at Mile 8 and Mile 10, then let it rip until I cross the finish line.

3) Enjoy it

GORE-TEX Philadelphia Half Marathon Training Update

Philadelphia Half Marathon Course

The GORE-TEX Philadelphia Half Marathon has a fantastic course that starts at the Philadelphia Museum of Art in front of the famous Rocky Steps, runs through Center City with throngs of screaming spectators and University City where Penn and Drexel students cheer themselves hoarse, then onto leafy Fairmont Park and the Schuylkill River before finishing back at the museum with a high-five from the Philadelphia mayor.

Save two aforementioned hills, the course is flat and fast.

Races—even PR attempts–are so much more fun when I’m open to enjoying the atmosphere as well.

Two of my favorite (now eclipsed) PR experiences—2010 New York City Marathon and 2012 Disney Princess Half Marathon—happened when I was in a good mood and ready to enjoy the day despite the fact that I was sucking serious wind. I stopped (briefly) for photos at both races, high-fived spectators and pushed myself to my limit, nabbing big PRs and having a blast in the process. That’s what I want to do here: push hard and play hard.

Blogger Meet-Up

I’m also excited to be planning a Meet-Up with some fellow bloggers who I’ve gotten to know via social media, but who I’ve never met:

Katherine, Food, Fitness, Fantasy
Jen, The Final Forty
Mer, Scoot a Doot
Vic, Scoot a Doot

Want to join us? Come on down!

When: Saturday, November 22 at 12 pm
Where: Flying Monkey Bakery at Reading Market Terminal
Why: Because it’s fun!
How: I have no idea. I’ve never planned a Meet-Up. If you see someone you recognize, say hi!

I’m running the GORE-TEX Philadelphia Marathon as a guest of GORE-TEX. As always, all posts and opinions are purely my own. I’m always honest about my experiences. Seriously. For more information, read my Disclosure policy.

Karla Bruning


Karla Bruning is a race announcer at the TCS New York City Marathon + other major events, TV host for the New York City Triathlon + contributor to Shape, Redbook, Runner's World + other publications. She used to report for Newsweek but spent her free time squeezing in workouts. Now it's her job. She's run 8 marathons, 30 halves, 10 triathlons + open water swims. When she's not running, talking about running or writing about running, she's snuggling her baby, spoiling her dog + compulsively traveling.


11 2014

20 Comments Add Yours ↓

The upper is the most recent comment

  1. 1

    So jealous! I really love Philly and I’m sure I’d love this race – must do it one day!

    Good luck and like you said, just enjoy it!
    Danielle recently posted..3 Year Blogiversary & Giveaway!My Profile

    • Karla Bruning

      Thanks, Danielle! I think Philly would be right up your alley!

  2. 3

    Hope to see you on Saturday!
    Twins Run recently posted..Charlottesville Ten MilerMy Profile

  3. 5

    I’m sure you’ll do great … and I am excited that I will hopefully get to SAY THIS TO YOUR FACE tomorrow! Eeeee!
    Katherine recently posted..Race Recap: 2014 NYRR Dash to the Finish Line 5KMy Profile

  4. 7

    Wish I could be a part of the blogger meet up fun. Be like Rocky and TKO Philly!
    Elle recently posted..Trekking SalkantayMy Profile

    • Karla Bruning

      Thanks, Elle! Wish you could have been there too!

  5. 9

    Wish I were going to be there. Best of luck and have fun!
    Judith recently posted..Gratitude for Sobriety and RunningMy Profile

  6. 11

    As you say, running smart is key. Have a great race! Phil too!
    Ewen recently posted..Racing Ron and RidingMy Profile

    • Karla Bruning

      Thanks, Ewen! We both had excellent races!

  7. 13

    GOOOOOD luck my friend! I am SO jealous you are in my city! I miss it so much, i wish we could have timed it, and either I ran it this year, or you ran it last year so we could have met up! I hope you have an amazing weekend, and amazing race! make sure you try to run in valley green if you want to do your short run there today, it is GORGEOUS!
    Tina muir recently posted..Winter Running- What to Wear at Every TemperatureMy Profile

    • Karla Bruning

      Thanks, Tina! Would have been fun to meet-up in Philly. Maybe another race in the future! I had a great time–always do in Philly!

  8. 15

    Have fun! My best races this year were the ones where I just went to have fun. Philly seems like the perfect place to do so.
    Kristi@Blog for an Average Runner recently posted..I Love Winter RunningMy Profile

    • Karla Bruning

      Thank you! I had a great race, enjoyed the course and pushed hard. I’ve really grown to love racing in Philly!

  9. 17

    It was so wonderful to meet you, Jennifer and Katherine (and sig o’s) on Saturday. :) I consider Philly “my” city now although I grew up with NYC as “my” city – so hopefully one day I’ll get up to your neck of the woods to run there! xo
    Mer @ ScootaDoot recently posted..Special Olympics Step Up ChallengeMy Profile

  10. 19

    Woohoo! SOOOO awesome meeting you! Thanks again for organizing the meet-up! :)

    • Karla Bruning

      I’m so glad we were able to make it happen!