What's the best way to shake out the legs before the Boston Marathon?
Dance, skip, sing, laugh and selfie your way through the Boston Athletic Association (BAA) 5k of course!
And I did just that this year.
2015 would be the fourth year I would be running the 5k and third as a shakeout run for the Big Show. Now in the past two years I had run too fast for a shakeout run. Yeah I got a little caught up in the "race" portion of it. Hey it happens when I run alone.
So this year I brought in a back-up... my boo Linzie from Sharp Endurance. I knew if I had someone with me who also wanted to run for fun we would stick to the plan. Thankfully Linzie was on board. Woo!
For the second year in a row we devised a plan for the #WeRunSocial crew to meet up for a pre-race photo.
How awesome is this #WeRunSocial/#RunDisney crew? I am lucky to have met all of these fine folks thanks to Twitter.
While this was only a portion of our crew, we were able to find the rest of them on the way to the Start corrals.
Now the BAA 5k is one of my favorite races, the Start Corral area is one of the worst. It was bad this year. There was no rhyme or reason to people lining up despite pace groupings being add. Additionally it was on one side of Boston Common, but the road was too narrow to hold all the runners.
Since we were delayed, we ended up wandering to almost the very back of the corrals. Also the final corral simply said 10+ minutes. Thought they may get a little more specific for paces since this race has about 8k runners of all paces.
But as we hung out just outside the corral since there wasn't much room in the corral, I was able to meet a blog reader - Gloria!
This was Gloria's first 5k and was honored when she told me she started running around reading my blog. <<insert tears of joy>>
I loved my race outfit! I wanted to have as much fun as possible... and how can you NOT have fun with a sparkly cape?
We couldn't hear much where we were standing, but we pieced together that the race had started. I started my timer to see how long it would take us to get from where we were to the Start. In case you were wondering, over 13 minutes. We actually saw the winners come in as we were heading to the Start. Which was kind of cool since the winner set a new US 5k record.
As we jogged to the Start, we were trying to figure out where the actual Start Line was since it was not clearly marked. After stumbling over it, I finally started my Garmin.
The day was gorgeous and the crowd was lively. It was different seeing so many people finishing as we were starting.
Linzie and I ended up picking up a pair of Adams along the way so the four of us ended up being in sync and ran together.
The course was different from the year before - not drastically - but enough to keep my interest peaked.
I love running down Comm Ave.
Mile 1: 10:45
Another benefit of running local? Seeing a ton of friends along the way. I was able to give high-fives and encouragement to lots of familiar faces along the way.
When we hit the turnaround point on Comm Ave, we had to snap a selfie with the CITGO sign in the background. The kind volunteer offered to snap one for us, but you know we had to selfie it.
We did a quick turnaround to head back up Comm Ave before taking the famous "right on Hereford, left on Boylston."
And bumped into Mile 2 on Hereford..
Mile 2: 11:08
Now we were running down one of the most historic areas of the city. THE famous run towards the Boston Marathon Finish, which is all set up and ready to go for the actual marathon.
As we ran over the Finish area, people were stopping to take pics. The volunteers and police were trying to keep everyone to the sides and out of the way of the other participants who weren't stopping for photo opps.
While I am superstitious, I didn't think it was bad luck to stop for pics since technically I was in another race at that moment.
After snapping some pics, it was time to finish up this fun run.
The vibe during the race was amazing and contagious!
But a race isn't official without a mid-run selfie. ;) Right? :P
As I mentioned this race was full of inspiration including the blind runners and their Guides. There was a large group of blind runners taking part and each motivated me!
We took the left on to Charles Street and saw the Finish within reach, but we had to snap our Mile 3 pic before finishing.
Mile 3: 10:45
Now that the final mile marker pic was snapped, we could race to the Finish. We hadn't totally worked out our Finish Line posing, but we made sure that all four of us were together.
And I was in the mood to leap...
And leap I did. I was pretty darn proud of this Finish photo. So happy I had to buy the whole set of official photos. :P But how could I pass it up? Even with my shirt higher than I wanted it to be I was able to look past the imperfections and see how excited I was.
FINAL TIME: 34:07
This race was an absolute blast and I thank these three guys for that!
After collecting our post-race snacks, we headed back to our original meeting place to find all of our friends.
And add to the crew... Pavement Runner!
Happy Place = Hanging with my West Coast Boys
Once we had reassembled the gang, it was time to head to a bar on Boylston for some post-race celebrating... aka BEER!
As we headed to the bar, we passed the final participant of the 5k coming towards the Finish. I stopped to cheer my head off for this amazing lady and her husband.
THIS is what racing is all about - getting out there and Finishing What You Started!
The morning was a blast and I couldn't have asked for a better group of people to spend it with... until next year!