Editor’s note: Here’s a short race report from one of our coaching clients named Brooke Taylor who ran the Jerusalem Half Marathon last Sunday.
Dear Angie and Trevor, Greetings from Israel! As we wait to board our flight back to the U.S., I wanted to check in and thank you for helping me get ready for the Jerusalem Half Marathon.
This race has been in the works for many months. It was my first-ever international race and I was also rehabbing my knee. I decided to become an MTA member and was paired with Coach Lynn to get me ready. I can say now, there is no way I would’ve had such a successful race without her help.
Things I Learned from the Jerusalem Half Marathon
I have heard a lot of people say this race is on their radar. Since it’s fresh in my mind, I wanted to share “Things I Learned” from the Jerusalem Marathon experience.
We arrived at the race about 30 minutes before the start time. The lines for the bathrooms were so long that by the time we were out of the porta-John’s, we had to sprint to our corral. I didn’t even have time to stretch. The race boasts a registration of 40-thousand, so the crowds were massive and chaotic.
Once we were on the course, I realized why the lines were so long for the bathrooms. There was not ONE porta-pot on the WHOLE COURSE! I have never seen this before (is this common)? I have a history of GI issues. So, I was really nervous when I realized that I was on my own there.
I really believe that working with Coach Lynn was the saving grace. She has been helping me try different things (i.e. honey in water) to help my stomach, and I was able to go the entire race without any issues.
The course is hilly but much to my surprise, it wasn’t nearly as bad as I thought it was going to be! The hills are graded and gradual. Totally doable! I also listened to your latest episode during the race. Just when I started to get side stitches, I heard Ben Greenfield talking about nasal breathing. I tried it and it worked! I continued doing this in spurts
throughout the race and found it beneficial.
There weren’t that many spectators out, but there was live music and a very festive atmosphere. To run in such a symbolic place was something I will never forget.
The cherry on top was running with my 15-year old son. This will be a memory of a lifetime. Our mission to was to raise money for Christians in Syria as well as the persecuted Church throughout the world. We wore orange in solidarity of the 21 Egyptian Coptic martyrs that were beheaded in 2015. This was sobering and emotional.
As a wife and mom of five, my husband and I are constantly telling our kids to “be the change” they want to see in the world. I have gotten very good at preaching this, but this experience showed me the value of DOING. And that every step can be directed with purpose and meaning.
Thank you for playing a part in that.
Host of Good Things Radio Podcast
Wow, what an amazing experience, Brooke! No restrooms, no problems. I look forward to the day I would run a marathon with my daughter. You are definitely an inspiration to bring the change in many. Way to go.
I just heard the interview on MTA! Thanks for coming and participating Brooke! All the visitors from other countries bring so much energy to the Jerusalem Marathon and to the country in general!
I live in Israel, though I am originally from the USA (Chicago specifically). I am a runner and listen regularly to the MTA podcast. While I did not participate this year in the Jerusalem Marathon, I have in previous years, sometimes running the full marathon course and other times the half course.
It was nice to hear your recap and brought back memories. I would just comment that I never noticed a shortage of porta-potties, though maybe there are more of them on the full marathon course than on the shorter routes. Also, I think they are set back a bit and not right on the course, so if you did not check the course info in advance and really pay attention to look for them, you might not have noticed them.
Regarding the hilly course, the really killer hills are all on the full marathon course. The half marathon is hilly too, but those hills are not nearly as bad as the hills on the full marathon. You must have run up the Kovshei Katamon street hill that is almost a straight up wall, though it is not long!
Thanks for coming and I enjoyed hearing your recap!
Brooke, I ran the full there in 2017 and it was a memorable experience! I’m glad you got to participate along with family. What a lifetime memory.