This is a very popular local race. It starts with fireworks and then you run around the lights in the park and it ends with a downhill.
Here are some pics from a previous year:
Last year, I ran this race in a blizzard.
This year, the forecast was for heavy, cold rain. Not very inviting but this is always a fun race…so I couldn’t bail.
I picked up my bib & shirt yesterday to save time. Then I pondered what to wear….the rain put a damper on my festive attire.
I decided to park at work and walk the mile or so to the race. I wore boots, a long raincoat & used an umbrella to stay dry until the race.
Then I wore a windbreaker, cap & running shoes for the race and stashed my wet stuff until after the race.
As I mentioned, it is a popular race and I bumped into all sorts of people — 3 ladies from my running group, Christine, a professor from work, my FB friend Judy and Andrea, my roommate for Love Run in Philly.
We chatted until it was time to head out into the rain.
Yes, it was raining but not as cold as I feared. I lined up with Judy & we watched the fireworks until we ran our separate ways.
The race started with an uphill, went through the city before we entered the park.
My legs felt really sluggish. I couldn’t make any headway in the crowd. Maybe it was that I hadn’t run much this week (not at all Sunday, Tuesday, Wednesday or Friday) or just the slippery road and the dampness.
I felt better once we entered the park and it was fun looking at all the lights. There were at least two hills that I remember in the park and I was proud of myself for not walking at all. I ran up them..slow but at least I ran.
The whole time I was running, I kept looking at the ground trying to avoid the big puddles and keeping an eye out for potholes (I did fall during this race several years ago.)
Finally we left the park and ran downhill to the finish. I wanted to finish fast but for some reason, I got a side stitch and had to slow it down and breathe deep to try to get rid of it.
It was dark so I couldn’t see my Garmin but I knew by the timing clocks that this wouldn’t be a PR.
The problem with getting faster and finishing your 5ks in 27:xx or 28:xx, you get cocky and expect to have a good race every time out.
Well, in a hilly wet race, this wasn’t going to be. I struggled to finish under 29. According to my Garmin, it was 28:56 but officially I finished at 29:02.
I went inside to dry off and change into my dry clothes and wait for the results. The refreshments were nothing to write home about — just chips & apples. (In the previous years, there was Ben & Jerry’s ice cream!!)
Well believe it not, I won 3rd in my age group.
mile 1- 9:26
mile 2 – 9:25
mile 3 – 9:02
.15 – 7:26
Very usual for me to have negative splits.
So I beat my time from 2010 (29:15), my first Last Run. And even in the rain, I enjoyed the race.
Happy Running? How was your weekend? Do you run in a holiday race? Have you raced in the rain?