My Profile

@gretchenbolson

Lithia, FL Raving since 2020 Boston Marathon finisher, 50 States hopeful/finisher, World Marathon Majors Six Star hopeful/finisher, Seven Continents Club, Marathon Maniacs #15622 Active 1 week, 4 days ago

About Me

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My Races

Organize, track & review your races and personal bests here.

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Half Marathon

Marathon

Ultramarathon

(Marathon or Ultra) + Half

Marathon + Ultra

Other

Future Races

Personal Bests (1)

Race Distance Location Date Result
Marathon Mesa, AZ Feb 8, 2020 3:32:05

Future Races (7)

Race Distance Location Date Paid
Marathon Eugene, OR Apr 30, 2023
Marathon Burlington, VT May 28, 2023
Marathon Duluth, MN Jun 17, 2023
Marathon Bristol, NH Sep 30, 2023
Marathon Portland, ME Oct 1, 2023
Marathon Detroit, MI Oct 15, 2023
Marathon Indianapolis, IN Oct 28, 2023

Past Races (38)

Race Distance Location Date Result My Raves My Performance
Marathon Tokyo, Japan Mar 5, 2023 4:47:26
Marathon Atlanta, GA Feb 26, 2023 4:48:43
Marathon Kiawah Island, SC Dec 10, 2022 4:40:57
Marathon Tulsa, OK Nov 20, 2022 4:59:02
Marathon Des Moines, IA Oct 16, 2022 5:13:36
Marathon Kansas City, MO Oct 15, 2022 4:43:30
Marathon Chicago, IL Oct 9, 2022 4:26:09
Marathon Big Sur, CA Apr 24, 2022 5:22:41
Marathon Hopkinton, MA Apr 18, 2022 5:14:12
Marathon Los Angeles, CA Mar 20, 2022 4:59:10
Marathon Little Rock, AR Mar 6, 2022 5:08:51
Marathon Fort Worth, TX Feb 27, 2022 5:41:39
Marathon Rehoboth Beach, DE Nov 14, 2021 4:52:57
Marathon Hopkinton, MA Oct 11, 2021 4:30:40
Marathon Baltimore, MD Oct 9, 2021 5:06:24
Marathon London, United Kingdom Oct 3, 2021 4:16:46
Marathon Berlin, Germany Sep 26, 2021 4:48:05
Marathon Snoqualmie Pass, WA Jul 24, 2021 4:16:03
Marathon Lincoln, NE May 2, 2021 4:00:34
Marathon Louisville, KY Apr 24, 2021 4:33:26
Marathon Baton Rouge, LA Mar 6, 2021 4:13:08
Marathon Oak Island, NC Feb 13, 2021 4:45:14
Marathon Gulf Shores, AL Jan 31, 2021 4:35:20
Marathon Pass Christian, MS Dec 13, 2020 4:06:50
Marathon Cocoa, FL Nov 29, 2020 4:20:25
Marathon Jackson Hole, WY Sep 26, 2020 4:32:10
Marathon Las Vegas, NV Sep 19, 2020 4:40:39
Marathon Mesa, AZ Feb 8, 2020 3:32:05
Marathon Philadelphia, PA Nov 24, 2019 3:58:16
Marathon Woodruff, UT Sep 21, 2019 3:36:56
Marathon Charlottesville, VA Apr 7, 2018 4:13:37
Marathon Charleston, SC Jan 13, 2018 3:55:48
Marathon Staten Island, NY Nov 5, 2017 3:55:42
Marathon Richmond, VA Nov 12, 2016 4:12:05
Marathon Lake Buena Vista, FL 2008 6:36:17
Marathon Staten Island, NY 2007 4:52:59
Marathon Chicago, IL 2006 4:10:39
Marathon Logan, UT 2003 5:12:32

My Raves

I must admit that I'm a bit surprised at how high this race is rated, because it definitely wasn't one of my favorites!! The shuttle to the start was not … MORE

I must admit that I’m a bit surprised at how high this race is rated, because it definitely wasn’t one of my favorites!! The shuttle to the start was not difficult. But the starting line can only be described as a cluster. I had to wait 30 minutes in line for bag check . . . and the bag check line was in the middle of the starting corral. Had I known the process would have been so unorganized, I wouldn’t have planned to check anything.

The course was flat and relatively easy, but I worried in several places that surely I must have taken a wrong turn because it wasn’t entirely clear where the course was. Sometimes the course was on a walking path that meandered (making it impossible to run the tangent–I ran about half a mile longer than a marathon according to my GPS), and sometimes the course was on a street that was not closed to traffic. It wasn’t clear if runners should stay on the right side of the road or the left, so there were runners on either side with cars driving down the middle! There weren’t an excessive number of cars driving on the course, but enough that it seemed so bizarre that there were no cones marking a safe path for the runners.

The course itself was pretty . . . for the first mile or two until it became extremely monotonous and I started going crazy wondering if this was the second, third or maybe fourth time we had run on this same stretch. Everything was sage green–the grass, the trees, the houses. It was pretty at first, but boring after a while. Despite the fact that the course was on an island, we only caught a glimpse of the ocean for a brief 100 meters.

Aid stations were completely overwhelmed. I am not a complete back of the packer–finish time was 4:50–but volunteers at many aid stations were filling up cups while I waited, instead of having them ready to grab and go.

I will say that the finish line food was the best I have ever experienced, even better than VIP tent food.

DIFFICULTY
1
PRODUCTION
1
SCENERY
3
SWAG
3

2 members marked this review helpful. Agree?

This was my second experience running with this organization (I also ran Mississippi Gulf Coast in December), and I think they put on an excellent race. Communication was stellar, and … MORE

This was my second experience running with this organization (I also ran Mississippi Gulf Coast in December), and I think they put on an excellent race. Communication was stellar, and corrals were well organized to allow for a staggered start. This year, the race was postponed to March (the race is usually held over MLK weekend in January). Iā€™m not sure what the typical weather conditions are at that time of year, but the weather was glorious on our race day. It was slightly chilly in the morning, but warmed up as the day progressed. I heard some say it was TOO warm, but I am from Florida, so I thought it was lovely! šŸ™‚ Water stations were plentiful and volunteers were friendly. The course was flattish, and I was really impressed with what we saw of Baton Rouge. It is a gorgeous city. I especially loved running past Tiger Stadium and the LSU lakes (I kept craning my neck to see all the fabulous houses we ran past). The jambalaya at the end was delicious. I loved getting a special medal for running both marathons in Mississippi and Louisiana (Beach to Bayou medal).

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
5
SWAG
5

1 member marked this review helpful. Agree?

I ran this race during COVID, so my experience was likely different than in other years. The weather made things particularly difficult--it rained the entire time, and it was chilly … MORE

I ran this race during COVID, so my experience was likely different than in other years. The weather made things particularly difficult–it rained the entire time, and it was chilly and windy. I was soaked through within the first mile. My flight there the night before was delayed 2.5 hours so I missed packet pickup, but the race director was extremely kind and told me it would be okay to pick it up on race morning (even though they had repeatedly said this would not be an option).

We were told this would be a cupless race and we would need to provide our own hydration–volunteers would only fill up our bottles. I brought a backpack for my water, but they ended up having cups/bottles on the course anyway. At the finish line, there was delicious pork BBQ. I received the best medal I have ever earned–an enormous sea turtle that opens up locket-style. They are known for awesome medals, and they certainly did not disappoint. They also gave us a thin finisher’s jacket (only to marathoners). I had to purchase a t-shirt separately when I registered (it is not a tech shirt, just a regular cotton t-shirt). They were also supposed to give us fleece blankets, but they didn’t arrive in time due to COVID. Overall, I would say the swag was excellent! They also provided free photos as you cross the finish line (look for them on Facebook).

The course was relatively flat except for a bridge at the end (out and back, so you get the hill on both sides). The view of the beach was blocked by dunes and buildings. I might have enjoyed my stay more had it been a sunnier day!

DIFFICULTY
2
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
4
SWAG
5

2 members marked this review helpful. Agree?

This was my third marathon during COVID-19, but by far the largest, with about 3,000 runners between the marathon and two half marathons. COVID-19 protocols were in place. Runners were … MORE

This was my third marathon during COVID-19, but by far the largest, with about 3,000 runners between the marathon and two half marathons. COVID-19 protocols were in place. Runners were masked at the start and finish. We were placed in corrals based on expected finish times. There were supposed to be staggered starts, but it ended up just being a crowd to the start.

The course was gorgeous; I loved seeing the sunrise over the water (even though it was behind me so I kept craning my neck for the view!). Normally I can’t stand out-and-back courses, but this one is great! Perhaps because the scenery is so beautiful–you run along the water the entire time. The weather was hot and humid, but I live in FL so am used to that. Otherwise, dress appropriately for the heat. Aid stations were plentiful with bottled water and Powerade.

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
5
SWAG
5
My Media

1 member marked this review helpful. Agree?

I am extremely glad I chose the Jackson Hole Marathon as my race for Wyoming. The course was absolutely gorgeous and unforgettable. That said, we had the bad weather trifecta … MORE

I am extremely glad I chose the Jackson Hole Marathon as my race for Wyoming. The course was absolutely gorgeous and unforgettable. That said, we had the bad weather trifecta of cold, wind and rain. Throw in the altitude, and this was a challenging race. Because of COVID-19 (I assume??), there were no shuttles to return us to our cars at the starting line. The race director had indicated in an email that we could take Uber, Lyft or the local bus. I assumed Uber/Lyft would work well. Unfortunately, this was not a viable option–there were no drivers in the area. But because of the infrequent bus schedule, that left me waiting for an HOUR for a bus back to the start. I was completely chilled to the bone by the time I returned to my car nearly two hours after the finish. If I were running this again, I would secure post-race transportation in advance. Medal was great and distinctive to Jackson Hole.

DIFFICULTY
4
PRODUCTION
3
SCENERY
5
SWAG
3
My Media

1 member marked this review helpful. Agree?

This was the first race I had the privilege to run since COVID-19 caused so many races to go virtual. Kudos to the race director for making it work! There … MORE

This was the first race I had the privilege to run since COVID-19 caused so many races to go virtual. Kudos to the race director for making it work! There were only 11 of us running the marathon. We started at about 4500 feet and climbed 2000 feet of elevation. The course was definitely the most challenging marathon course I have run. Aside from the altitude and the hills, I underestimated the psychological impact of running alone in complete darkness . . . for hours! The race began about an hour before sunset–the canyon was beautiful. I have always wanted to run a marathon at night, and now I can check this off my list!

DIFFICULTY
5
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
3
SWAG
3

1 member marked this review helpful. Agree?

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