I’m a tad behind on blog posts, so I plan to get caught up over the next few days. I’ve put off writing this post because I was waiting to see if I ever got my t-shirt….
I’ve ran this race 2 of the last 3 years. The first year I ran it, there were issues with the 10K course. It was said to be certified, but it actually wasn’t, and it ended up being about 1/2 a mile short due to confusion on the course. Almost the entire field missed a turn. I’m happy to report that they have fixed this issue.
Race morning, I showed up to pick up my packet rather than driving up to Atlanta the day before the race. Packet pick up went smooth other than them trying to give me a different size shirt than I had registered for. Several others in the line had issues with shirt sizes as well that morning. It seems that they didn’t hold the shirts for those who had preregistered and gave out shirts to people who registered late, so they said they would make another order of shirts and get them to us….ok, no problem.
I returned all my extra stuff to my car, took off my warm layers, put on my bib, and did a short warm up before heading to the start line. As I approached the start line, I noticed people had lined up on the front row with their dogs. I knew this was a dog friendly race, but I hadn’t expected people to line up in the front with their dogs. Since I was trying to PR and it is only gun timed, I decided to line up close to the front as well. As we waited for the start, the two dogs on the front row were getting tangled up. I made sure I was lined up off to the side, so I could avoid what looked to be a disaster waiting to happen.
The race started and I took off faster than I had planned to get out ahead of the crowd, then quickly settled into my pace. My goal was to run this race in under 26 minutes even though my year end goal for a 5K is under 25. The race started off with a downhill before a short climb up Fowler St. followed by a small longer incline up 14th St. before it levels a bit. I knew the course going into the race from running it two years earlier, so I knew the only real significant hill was up behind Ikea, and after topping it, the race would finish downhill. I just needed to get to the top of that hill! As I topped it, I was on target to definitely make under 26, but there was a chance that I could go sub-25. With the downhill to the finish, I was able to hang on to finish in 24:46, so I met goal #7 on my list. Does that mean I need a new 5K goal since this was done in March?
I did finally get my t-shirt. About a month after the race, I received an email letting us know that the t-shirts were ready, and we could come pick them up at the JLA office. What? I specifically didn’t do early packet pick up to avoid driving to downtown Atl twice, and now, you want me to drive in to pick up a $6 t-shirt? I don’t think so. I’d spend more in gas and my time with the 45 minute drive, so I sent an email letting them know that I was disappointed, and they did offer to mail it me, so I finally got my t-shirt a little over a month after the race.
The big question…..would I recommend the race? Hmmm….that’s a hard one. If you want to PR a course, then it’s a good one provided you start at the front and get ahead of the dogs, but after running it twice and having a major hiccup the first year, and a minor one the next time, I’m inclined to not race it again…..but I will need another PR, so who knows. 😉