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Meet the elites running 3M Half Marathon

Elite runners love the 3M Half Marathon course! It’s known for being one of the country’s faster half marathon courses. Elites run 3M Half Marathon presented by Under Armour to secure fast times, obtain PRs, try new hydration/nutrition plans, and/or prepare for the Austin Marathon or Austin Half Marathon. Come out and support these elites as they give their all on Sunday, Jan. 20th!

Jessica Harper

Jessica returns to defend her 2018 3M Half Marathon title! She is the female champ and finished with a time of 1:15:45. She ran collegiately at The University of Texas from 2011-13. When she’s not traveling, you can find her running around Austin!

Bryan Morton is one of the elites running the 2019 3M Half Marathon presented by Under Armour.

Bryan Morton. Credit: Ed Sparks

Bryan Morton

Bryan is an accomplished runner who finished second overall at the 2018 3M Half Marathon (1:10:13). He is also part of a trio who will pace female elites to the Olympic Marathon Trials B Standard at the Ascension Seton Austin Marathon presented by Under Armour on Feb. 17th.

Zach Meineke

Zach just moved to Austin from Wisconsin. He heard about 3M Half Marathon after reading about it in Runner’s World as being one of the best half marathons. Zach is a physical therapist at TexPTS and a father of two. He does a lot of his training pushing a double stroller with his 3- and 1-year-old (which they love). Zach most recently ran the 2017 Colorado Colfax Marathon in 2:32:34. He loves exploring the city of Austin through running and is very excited to get the grand tour during the 3M Half.

Andrew Leahey

Andrew is a born and raised Oklahoman who just can’t get enough wind! He competed in cross country and track at Southern Nazarene University. He earned various levels of recognition, from conference champion to All-American. A fun fact about Andrew is that when he was young his family were emu ranchers (yes the large dinosaur-like birds). His training started at a young age when these large, flightless birds would chase him. He now appreciates them!

Sarah Bishop

Sarah Bishop is one of the elites Running the 3M Half Marathon

Sarah Bishop.

Sarah ran collegiately as an 800m runner and hung it up after 8 years of competitive running. After getting married and having 4 children in 3.5 years, she needed an outlet from the stress of daily life and to do something for herself. In 2014, she set a goal to break 1:30 in the half marathon. In the past 4 years, she has whittled down her PRs to 1:16:40 in the half marathon and 2:42:46 in the marathon, qualifying for the 2020 Olympic Marathon Trials. She won the 2017 Marine Corps Marathon (2:45:06) along the way.

Michael Morris

Michael has been running competitively since 2004 when he started running for Wills Point High School. After a successful high school career, he ran for Texas State University in 2008. While there, he set the school record in the steeplechase with a time of 9:02. After graduating, he started coaching at San Marcos High School. He is currently the head cross country and track coach.

Goose Pedraza

Goose is an alum of the University of Texas-Permian Basin where he competed in cross country and track. He also attended Texas A&M-Kingsville where he also competed in cross country and track. Goose is a Fleet Feet Austin employee who has a half marathon PR of 1:13:02. He lives in San Marcos, Texas, with his girlfriend and dog Domino. Goose and his girlfriend will soon welcome their newborn daughter.

Natasha van der Merwe

Natasha van der Merwe is one of the elites Running the 3M Half Marathon

Natasha van der Merwe.

Natasha is a transplant from South Africa, a mom to a 2-year-old daughter, and has been racing as a professional triathlete since 2010. Her racing success includes multiple victories at Austin’s local triathlon championship race – the Rookie Tri, a win at Lifetime’s Cap Tex Tri event in 2018, and multiple top-10 finishes at Ironman and 70.3 events over the last 10 years. She is also the 2017 Decker Challenge half marathon female champ (1:26:27).

Implement these 3M Half Marathon pro tips for a smooth race week

The 25th annual 3M Half Marathon presented by Under Armour is less than three weeks away. Can you feel the excitement? There no better time like the present to take a look at some race week pro tips. These pro tips range from week of tips to what we strongly encourage you do once you cross the finish line. Whether this is your first 3M Half or your 13th, these pro tips will set you up for success! 

Customize race day

  • Let the professionals from FinisherPix capture your race day memories. Take advantage of the pre-race prices and order your photos today. Once the race begins prices go up! BONUS – follow these tips to get your best race-day photos.
  • Show off that PR! Customize your commemorative 25th anniversary 3M Half Marathon spinning medal. Learn how you can personalize it with your name and finishing time. 

The expo’s first hour is always the busiest

  • It’s no secret, the first hour of expos is always the busiest. There’s an energy because of race weekend, the opening of the expo, and the industry’s top vendors gathered all in one place. Add the buzz from amped participants wanting their Under Armour shirt and world-famous 3M Half swag bag and you have a recipe for a busy first hour! 
  • Participants must pick up their own packet at the expo. Don’t forget your photo ID and confirmation number!

Stay near the start line

  • Get a good night’s sleep before race day, wake up feeling refreshed, and walk to the start line! Book your hotel today and utilize the great rates secured by onPeak, our hotel partner. Just think, you won’t have to worry about parking race morning!
  • Want something specific at the finish line? Don’t forget to drop off your gear bag. We’ll take it to the finish line for you, for FREE!

Run with the pacers

  • The excitement at the start of the 3M Half Marathon is undeniable. Don’t get caught up and go out too fast! Running with the professional, Austin-based Twenty-Six Two Pace Team is an excellent way to reign in your desire to lay down the hammer.

Post-race transportation

  • If you stayed near the start line, shuttles will take you from the finish line back to the start line after the race. Don’t worry, there will be plenty of time for you to celebrate with friends and family at the finish line festival! Shuttles will be located on San Jacinto Street between 11th and 12th Street. NOTE – shuttles are not available prior to the race.

The 2019 3M Half Marathon Finisher Medal

We are proud to reveal our 25th Anniversary Finisher Medal. This awesome piece of race history can be yours when you cross the finish on January 20, 2019!

Don’t forget to pre-order your personalized nameplate with your finishing time.

You can purchase your nameplate by logging in and then selecting the Shop next to your registration.

Goals were achieved and hundreds of PRs were earned at the 2018 3M Half Marathon on Sunday, January 21st. More than 7000 participants registered, the most in event’s 24-year history, for the standalone half marathon, coming to Austin from 47 states and 19 countries. Thousands of spectators lined the streets of Austin, cheering on runners and ensuring this special day will be remembered by all, including Laurie Allen, 9-time IRONMAN finisher, who finished her first half marathon on a hand cycle in 2:29:59 (after an accident in 2015 rendered her a quadriplegic).

Laurie Allen and Kent Snead.

“Another spectacular race day made possible by the folks at High Five Events and my amazing group of friends,” said Allen. “I love being back out on the race course with my fellow runners. It was a perfect day!”

Allen started at 7:10 a.m. while the rest of the field began their race to the heart of Austin at 7:30 a.m. Navigating their way downtown, 5626 runners enjoyed a fully supported course, complete with eight aid stations with water and nuun, a CLIF Bar CLIF Zone handing out CLIF SHOTS near Mile 7, thousands of cheering spectators with cowbells and hilarious signs, and nine bands performing live music on course.

“I had two goals coming into the 3M Half Marathon: to PR by one minute and to stick with the 1:55 pacers, then pick up my pace the last couple of miles,” said Jillian Baaklini, who set her half marathon PR (1:53:19) at the 2018 3M Half Marathon. “About a mile out I realized I would beat my previous PR by three minutes. I had this unexpected burst of energy and sprinted to the finish!”

Austinite Jessica Harper (1:15:45) was the overall female winner; with Jennifer Hall (1:17:51) and Anita Perez (1:19:35) finishing second and third respectively. The top three female Master’s finishers were  Tammy Bogle (1:33:08), Rochelle McClanahan (1:33:39), and Anne Hughes (1:34:08).

Jessica Harper, 2018 3M Half Marathon female champion (1:15:45).

Syracuse alumnus Joey Whelan (1:09:06) crossed the finish line first. Bryan Morton (1:10:13) and Mike Kurvach (1:12:24) completed the overall men’s field, respectively. The male Master’s finishing in the top three consisted of Matt McCurdy (1:14:19), Adam Reiser (1:16:49), Kevin Kimbell (1:16:55).

“2018 3M Half Marathon was a great opportunity to test my fitness and get myself into a race environment,” said Whelan, who used this as a tune-up race before the Austin Marathon on Feb. 18th. “It was nice to work with Byran Morton while being cheered on by the Austin running community. I look forward to running these streets again in a month at the Austin Marathon.”

For those planning ahead to January 20, 2019, next year’s registration is open and set at the low price of $65. This amazing deal will be available until Wednesday, January 24th. Don’t miss out on one of the faster half marathon courses in the country and the best packet in the industry, full of useful 3M products. Participants can see their results on the 3M Half Marathon website and continue to share their memorable experiences on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Runners can expect their FinisherPix race day photos to be ready in 24-48 hours after the race.

The 3M Half Marathon boasts one of the fastest 13.1-mile courses in the country and will open registration for 2019 on Monday, January, 22nd. Runners will enjoy a point-to-point course with mostly downhill running that showcases some of Austin’s finest locations. Starting in north Austin and finishing in near the Texas State Capitol, runners will appreciate a 300+’ net elevation drop.

The 2018 3M Half Marathon would like to thank the volunteers, spectators, and participants who made the race so special. They would also like to thank 3M and Director Mark Holmstrom, Girlstart and Deputy Director Julie Shannan, H-E-B, Under Armour, Clif Bar, nuun, Heavenly Care Moving, Dole, Medicine in Motion, Oskar Blues Brewery, Ben Phillips – Engel & Völkers Austin, and Austin Massage Company.