Friday, September 12, 2014

Fall Race Schedule, getting back in the game and getting more bling!!

Who's ready for cooler temps and Fall races??? 
This girl!! 
This past weekend kicked off the start of my Fall race schedule.
Hampton Bay Days 8k was not a race that I planned on running. I ran their inaugural 8k two years ago and wasn't overly impressed with it. It was hot and a little overpriced for a small 8k. I did however LOVE the course! An out and back from downtown Hampton to Ft. Monroe. The course ran within a block of my (now old) apartment, and along the bridges I logged some of my very first training runs back when I first started my whole running journey. So for me that was really neat and special,  but I just didn't think it was worth it do it again the next year.

This year there was a groupon that had the race priced at $20 with a $2 discount. Bonus!! An $18 8k! I'll take it!

Friday after school I swung by the Crowne Plaza Hotel in downtown Hampton to pick up my packet. There was no expo - just packet pick up. I was picking up packets for myself, Josh (that handsome fiance of mine!) and my running buddy Gineff. It was super quick and easy. While I was a little disappointed in the swag bag - non existent, I was impressed with the race shirt. They upgraded from the last time I ran to the same company that J&A uses for their shirt. I have yet to wear it to run but I'm sure it's the same as the rest of them.
That evening, Josh informed me he had to work Saturday AM so it was just going to be me and a running buddy run. I was happy with that as I felt like it had been forever since Gineff and I have ran together.

I worked at the restaurant that night but was home at a decent time. Since I've run the Bay Days 8k before I didn't really get the night before nervousness like I usually do. That and I have been running 4 days a week all summer long in preparation for the RNR Philly Half coming up, so an 8k wasn't intimidating at all. In fact it was 6 miles short of the distance I was supposed to do on that day. (I never did get those other 6 in...but I figured I'm ok.)
 Race morning arrived and picked up Gineff. I thought we were going to be super early and have no problem getting a spot in the parking garage. I am really glad I like to get to there super early because by the time we got there at about 7:30am, we were already parking on the top floor of the parking garage in downtown Hampton! We both situated ourselves with our race gear and headed out to the start area.
I'm guessing that a good part of the Hampton Roads area was a fan of getting the same groupon as us because the place was packed!! I think they said there was close to 1,000 runners. The line for same day packet pick up was massive! There were a bunch of porta-potties scattered around so it was nice to get in a quick stop before trying to find some shade to hang out in till start.
Pre Race Smiles!!

Waiting to head to the start line in front of the Air & Space Museum. 

Some more pre race selfies!!

It was HOT!! Just standing in the starting corrals I could feel sweat dripping everywhere!
The start and finish are both over the big Settlers Landing Bridge. Ugh! Bridges!
But we survived and even though it was hot we stuck to my 3:1 intervals.
Our pace slowed by each mile, just because Gineff hadn't run in awhile and the heat was really getting to her. Neither one of us were trying to get a PR so we were just out to enjoy ourselves.
We finished in 1:09:12 - not the best time, and 3mins slower then what I finished the last time I ran it in 2012, but a finish is a finish and we didn't give up.
I'm sure Gineff wanted too but I'm proud of her for toughing it out.
Once we crossed the finish line we grabbed our medals, quickly exchanged them with each other (it's our thing) and grabbed our water and free banana. It was actually a pretty medal this year!! 
We found a somewhat shaded spot to sit and also grabbed our free beer. It was just one so that was disappointing, but it was really cold so that was a bonus! The guy standing behind us happily offered me his ticket so I helped myself to a second.
Can you blame me? It was hot! I was trying to rehydrate!
Sweaty Beer Picture!!

Gineff show's off the bling!! I show off the brew!!

 After a few sweaty minutes and some good girl talk later we headed out to go back to the car. In awesome Gineff fashion - it became a McKinney ADVENTURE! In a matter of minutes I had my hands on a cupcake from Couture Cakes by Nika and a Snow Cone!

Who doesn't love a van that carries around yummy cupcakes!!

Our yummy yummy treats!!

Two very well earned cupcakes!!

Big finishes to our not so big race!!
We giggled our way through the rest of the festival and back to the car.
The only nice thing about parking all the way at the top of the parking garage is that I got an awesome view of the water near downtown Hampton. It sure was pretty.
Isn't that view just gorgeous??!!!

Time to dig in and enjoy our yummy treats!!
I had the Red Velvet cupcake and Gineff had Pineapple Coconut. 

That evening Josh and I sweated it out at our engagement photo shoot.
Here's a sneak peak at one of our pictures. I can't wait to see the rest of them!!
And I just love our photographer!!

Now it's time to finish up my training and tackle the Philly Half!!

Then next up....

Crawlin Crab 5k & Half - October 4th & 5th (Shell-Yeah Challenge)
Wicked 10k - October 25th
Disney Wine & Dine 5k & Half - November 7th & 8th
Harbor Lights 5k & Half - November 22nd & 23rd (Get Lit Challenge)

Phew....that's a lot of races....and even more bling!!


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