There's nothing like signing up for a 5k the night before the race...AGAIN! Apparently this is going to be my thing, and I don't mind it one bit, especially when the races are as much fun as this one was!
Debi texted me on the Thursday night before asking if I wanted to join her and her group, Girls Run the 901, and luckily it worked perfectly since Lexi and Lyla were spending the night with my parents on Friday night. When Friday rolled around, Memphis was hit with storms all day. It became increasingly possible that the race would be cancelled, especially since the location of the race was right along the Mississippi River. Debi rode with me to drop the girls off, and then we headed downtown, constantly checking for any updates on the race page. There was no news, so that was good news!
I dropped Debi off to pick up my race packet and shirt and I found an awesome parking spot right along the street. I love it when everything works out! Even better, Debi caught the fact that I apparently requested an XXL shirt for some reason, and got it switched out for the right size. Important, because this shirt is cute!
We got ourselves fixed up and we headed to the port-a-POTTY, as in singular. The line wasn't crazy long but we thought it was really odd. Turns out there were some more on the other side of a building. We then headed to meet a Blend (blogger friend), Janessa from Running on Empty. It was so exciting to finally meet her!
From there, we decided to head to the start line where we promptly found out that the race was postponed due to the weather and parking situations. No big deal, it gave us time to chat with our friend Jennifer, and we got to meet another internet friend, Meredith! I love the Internetz!
I had eaten a Honey Stinger waffle and so fuel wise, I felt fine, and I wasn't upset about the delay. Also, since getting my huge PR in April, I felt no pressure in this race, and just wanted to run with Debi. When it was time to line up, Debi and I just decided anything under 30 minutes would be acceptable. We also found this fun dude who was really excited by all of the crazy runners.
And then we were off! We had been warned by Barry, the owner of Breakaway Running, that there were 28 turns in this course, and it became obvious quickly that he was not joking! We turned into the beautiful neighborhood that we would be winding through, after a big game of running leapfrog. We hit the 1st mile pretty quickly at 8:51 and it felt like an easy pace to sustain for the next 2.1 miles.
It was so beautiful through Harbor Town and I really caught myself enjoying my surroundings and just enjoying the run. I felt strong and in control. It was super humid and I think that eventually caught up with us because the 2nd mile beeped at 9:11. Not bad, but I'd be lying if I didn't say I was a little disappointed. My big PR was positive splits, and I'd love to eventually run a good negative split race. Nonetheless, this was not a goal race and I had nothing to prove.
The third mile proved to be a little more difficult as Debi started to feel a little sick. The humidity was really affecting her, and while she told me to go on, I didn't feel the need to. I got my PR already. It's not everyday that you get to race with your BRF, so I wasn't leaving her. She ended up needing to take a little pit stop to take care of some business, and then she was ready to tough it out to the end. Our 3rd mile came in at 10:15 which was pretty amazing considering the stop we had to make!
We ended up crossing the finish line at 29:18, which meant our under 30 goal was met, even with a stop! Pretty badass if you ask me! I ended up 25th in my age group (out of 112) and 511 overall (out of 1312). A personal goal of mine is always to make it in the top half, so goal met!
After the race we grabbed some water, and some orange slices. There were also some smoothies, but we decided to head straight to the beer! It tasted pretty delicious and I wished I wasn't driving so I could have had more. It was great getting to hang out with Jennifer after the race too.
Overall, I think this is a must-run race if you live in the Memphis area! Start 2 Finish, the group that puts on the race, is so well organized and every race they do is fantastic. The course is flat and would be great to PR on, except for all the turns. With it being through a big neighborhood, there is tons of crowd support. Also, June in Memphis is heavily unpredictable, but with it being a night race, you have a great chance for good weather. See you there next year!
Because you want to know, here's what I wore: