Fueled by… – A review of the Fueled by Fine Wine Half

– Photo courtesy of Fueled by Fine Wine

As almost 1200 runners took to the streets of Dundee (and increased the population of the city by over a third), it is easy to imagine we were all fueled by different things. Some were fueled by the energy to complete their first half marathon. Some were fueled by the desire to get through it and sample the heck out of some delicious wines. Some were fueled solely by the challenge that this race promised to be.

Over the course of the race, some were fueled by the desire to raise money for a charity (Run Oregon’s own Brian Bernier). Some were fueled about getting to their wedding (Run Oregon’s own Anne Milligan). Still others were fueled by the impending lightning storm swirling overhead and the anger in swirling in their guts from the seemingly endless hills.

But whatever was fueling us individually, one thing was clear – the 5th Annual Fueled by Fine Wine gave us all an experience we will never forget.

Personally, I was fueled by silly decisions, lack of sleep (i.e. coffee), and continuing along my New Year’s Running goals of 100 miles and 1 Half per month.

My parents have been in town for the past few weeks and we have been running around like tourists across the top half of the state. On race weekend, we ended up getting a vacation rental house at the coast to enjoy the waves and get out of the sweltering heat in our non-AC house.

While I knew that driving from Lincoln City to Dundee would be a check, I spaced the fact that the race started at 7a (I thought 8), until a few days beforehand. This meant the 90 minute trip in would need to start ever earlier than I anticipated. Coupled with the fact that I was sleeping on a pull-out bed with my excited kiddos nearby and you can imagine my sleep was less than stellar.

Not only that, but my dad, brother, and I had made plans to catch a minor league baseball game in Keizer on race night. However, we looked at some schedules and noticed that the Seattle Mariners played the A’s in a solid divisional matchup at 1pm. We could have a little mini road trip and make it before game time if we left the Valley by 9. We decided to make a go for it – it was just up to me to finish in time.

But even despite my tired body and rush to finish, not even the hills over the first 5 miles (or at mile 12) could bring me down. The views were just too spectacular. The volunteers were too amazing. The treks through the wineries, while hilly, filled my heart with red-colored excitement. The conversation with another runner between miles 9-11.5 allowed me to forget a little bit about the silliness of my planning and focus just on the pure enjoyment of running.

At the end of the race, my shirt was bloody, my shoes were stained, and my wine glass left Billick Park free from a single drop of wine. Going wine-free at a wine-themed event is probably the dumbest thing ever, but after such a great race, I left clear of mind and drunk on happiness.

And that’s the kind of fuel that keeps you going. Thanks Fueled by Fine Wine for keeping me full.

About Author

Matt Rasmussen lives in Keizer, Ore. with his wife and three daughters. He enjoys watching hockey, going to as many breweries (618) and wineries (152) as he can, and all things Canada (he was born there). Matt was raised as a baseball player and officially transitioned over to running in 2010.

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