The very first race I completed was the Pikes Peek 10k in Rockville, Md., about 9 years ago. Nine years!! Wow.
Yesterday, I ran it again—my third time, and it was officially a PR—personal record. I finished the 6.2 miles in 56:05. Training does pay off. 🙂
The course is fast, going mainly downhill most of the way, with a few slight inclines. The weather was beautiful during race time—sunny, breezy and low-40s. Conditions couldn’t be more perfect.
What I like about the race is that it’s a straight shot. The course begins at Shady Grove Metro station, and ends at White Flint Mall (which, actually, will soon be no longer due to an upcoming redevelopment project). I grew up in the area, so I’m familiar with Rockville Pike, and it’s nice looking up from the run once and a while to see what new shops and restaurants have popped up.
I’ve always done this race with at least one friend. And we’ve always had people waiting for us at the end. But a colleague brought up a good point: what if you’re running alone and don’t have buddies waiting at the end to cheer you on… and to help take you back to your car or home after the race? I’m sure there were plenty that were in that situation.
I suppose if I were in that situation, I would probably take the Metro from White Flint (only a couple of blocks from the finish line) back to Shady Grove.
Thinking about lodging and transportation logistics for each race is important. My plans for my first two half marathons (Frederick, Md., and Alexandria, Va.) are set. I’m nearly done figuring things out with the Asheville Half in June. And I have to say, planning the details and making sure everything is perfect for race day (traveling to the city, booking a hotel, getting from the hotel to the race and back) is a little stressful. So far, it hasn’t been too bad… but I know when I start registering for races in smaller towns in middle-of-nowhere USA, figuring out those travel logistics will be a bit more challenging. But I’m not complaining (yet). The challenges are part of the adventure, right?