This was yet another new-to-me 5k, but we train at this park for the Freihofers Training Challenge — which is how I knew the race director lied when she said it’s a flat and fast race. In fact, if you just did Mowhawk Hudson here, you know that there’s a fairly steep hill in the beginning.
It’s a good cause (like Make a Wish for adults) and also quite close to where I live, so I decided to do it and then add miles afterwards.
Getting There & Hanging Out
I got there quite early, since I hadn’t registered — which was very easy, and they took credit cards, too. You get a unisex long sleeve tech short — I know a lot of people don’t get the long sleeves that often, but I have a ton of them now. I like to sleep in them, though, so it’s all good.
I used the real bathrooms three times before the race (yeah, I got there that early). Once for every glass of liquid I’d drunk before the race.
The finish line was being set up where registration was. The start line was down the hill, though, but no one actually seemed to know for sure (including the volunteers). Knowing where the race started, though, I knew that we’d be going uphill when it started. Good to know.
I didn’t know a soul at this race, but I chatted with a few women and got someone to take my photo.
The weather & dressing
It was again a beautiful day with ideal weather. The park is pretty shady, though, and quite chilly even with the late race start (9:30 am).
I chose Skirt Sports Skirt Sports Wonder Wool Tee , Toasty Girl Vest, and Charmed Triple Pocket Leggings. I definitely got a bit too warm in the vest, and wish I’d worn the windbreaker I’d brought with me instead — but I don’t think that it effected my race. I might even have been fine with just the short sleeved wool top, but oh well.
My Race Plan
I’ve been running pretty well; have had some really great runs lately. It had also been a very stressful week on the family front, and I’d spent Thursday going back and forth to my mom, rehab, back to my mom’s apartment, then home. I also knew the race wouldn’t be flat and fast. No plan, do my best.
So how’d that work for me?
- Mile 1: 10:23. Despite the big hill, and the small hill on wet grass to get to the bike path, somehow I had a strong first mile. Elevation gain: 79 ft, loss: 7 ft.
- Mile 2: 11:12. Mile two is actually flat. Why the big slow down? No idea. Maybe too fast the first mile? Elevation gain: 7 ft, loss: 20 feet. I must’ve been recovering from the first mile, that’s all I can figure — I should have done better this mile! Even just 30 seconds faster –which should have been doable — would have snagged me a PR. Oh well.
- Mile 3: 10:14. I guess I’d recovered by mile 3. There was a great downhill to the finish. Elevation gain: 13 ft, loss: 49 ft.
- Last .07: 9:30. Gotta love a downhill finish, although the race was just slightly short. Elevation loss: 16 ft.
32:32 — Official Time
10:29 Average Pace
24 out of 57
2 out of 8 F55-59
Yup, I placed second in my AG; of course there were no AG awards. The woman who was first in my AG was a good 5 minutes faster. It’s a tiny race and attracts more people supporting the cause than the speedsters.
I was stuck at about the same finish time for many years when it came to the half. Then I had the year of 4 half PRs. I’ve been stuck at the same finish time for 5ks for quite some time, while still managing to PR sometimes in longer distances. My 5k PR is from about 4 years ago, but I don’t run a lot of 5ks, I don’t train to run 5ks, and let’s face it — 5ks are hard!
Was the race well run?
Where to park, where to start — all was a bit confusing. I know the park fairly well so I did know where to park — the bonus being since the finish was in a different place than the start, I didn’t have to drive through runners to get out of the park.
OTOH, volunteers were very enthusiastic. I was handed a bottle of water as soon as I crossed the finish line. It’s chip timed, although the old school chips on your sneakers.
The post race spread was actually quite nice:
- Donuts, including cider and chocolate glazed — you know what I chose!
- Apple Cider
- A women from Power Surge Protein Nut Butters (they are awesome, btw — so much so they’re a little dangerous) with a bunch of flavors to sample on pretzels.
The radio station I listen to was there and I snagged a free tshirt from them, as well. I’d like to see a course map on the Website. That would be super helpful!
Another really small, low key 5k at a park that is close to my house. Even though the elevation gain/loss doesn’t look bad on paper, it is a little challenging; not so much flat & fast the first mile. Most of all, though, it raises money for a good cause (and did I mention it’s close to my house?).
I would definitely recommend it and if the circumstances are right, I would run it again.