This is the third year I’ve run this race. I love the hoodies that they give instead of regular shirts. Normally, my kids come with and run the kid’s races. This year was a little different. We knew it was going to be below freezing. Neither my husband or the kids wanted to be out in it. I, on the other hand, was preparing myself for the run.
I got up plenty early. I grabbed a banana and stopped by Starbucks and got a tall peppermint white mocha. I had warm layers on and even grabbed my earmuffs for the wait. When I got there, I was early enough to get a good parking spot. I found the check in table and got my hoodies and bib. I took the hoodie back to the car. I pinned my number on my shirt and decided to sit in the warm car for a little bit longer. When I checked the temperature after parking, it said 23 degrees. Finally, I decided I should find a bathroom before the race started. Luckily, this is at a YMCA so there were inside bathrooms available. I waited about 10 minutes max since there was only a single that I found. I did enjoy chatting to the other ladies in line. After using the bathroom, I pulled on my gloves and earmuffs and ventured outside again. I saw smores and cocoa/coffee along with bananas. The DJ was also playing music and trying to keep the crowd going.
I bumped into Carl and his friend, Eric. I got him to take a pre-race picture for me.
We also saw Santa and Mrs. Claus while we were chatting.
Soon we were told to make our way to the start line. Eric’s wife got a group pre-race picture of us on our way.
We started closer to the back. Here is our view of the start line.
I wished Carl and Eric well and told them I would see them at the end. I left my ear muffs on to start. Then we were off.
Shortly after the start, we turn left. Then we take the first right onto Chandworth. We keep straight at the first cross street. Then we turn right on Rhodes.
We are on Rhodes for a while. There is an uphill section before turning left on Sulkirk.
We almost immediately turn right onto Long Meadow. On Long Meadow, we reached Mile 1.
I was starting to feel the run more than normal. Then I realized I still had on my ear muffs. I found out the hard way my body needs my ears uncovered during runs. So, I removed them. Although it was very cold, that did the trick. I felt much better. There were a few brave souls out cheering. Including this lady at our next turn which was right onto Stokes.
In the bend of the downhill curve on Stokes is the one and only water stop.
Then it’s back uphill before our turn on Sulstone.
At this point, we’ve made it back to Sulkirk and turn left.
Then we turn right on Severn.
Along Severn, we find Mile 2.
Eventually, we turned left on Tyndale.
That dog and its owner were faster than me.
This part of the race had some pretty steep uphill sections. So, I strayed from my intervals a little.
Next we turned left on Glenfall. I was keeping up with the dog here.
I knew we were close to the finish. However, at this point my phone decided to die. I’m not sure why because I had a full charge at the start. We turned right on Brookfield. Then right on Sharon. Thank goodness for the police along this busy road. We crossed the intersection with Sharon and continued onto Quail Hollow. We run by the YMCA and take the last entrance into the parking lot. Luckily, we didn’t have to run around the lot this year. They had us run around the building and finish up behind close to the pool entrance.
My final time: 39:57
I came in just under 40 but I’m happy with that. I went over to the table and got a medal. Since it was kind of out of the way, I stayed and directed other finisher to the table until I saw Carl and Eric. Apparently, Eric had a rough race which might have been hurt by wearing a hat most of the way.
Carl and I wandered back to the party area while Eric went with his wife to watch his daughter run in the kids races. I had a celebratory smore.
They did have Sterno going so you roasted your own marshmallow. I must say, that is a very good post-race treat. Then, I went to my car to head home. I plugged my phone in and got my medal selfie.
The car now said 32 degrees. Incidentally, my phone almost immediately jumped to 80% power. So, I’m not sure if my phone just got too cold or what. Strange…
The medals are on short ribbons. They do this on purpose so you can hang them on your Christmas tree. Once I found that out, I really like the idea. Between the nice course, the medal, and the hoodie, this is a race that I will definitely try to fit in my racing schedule every year.