My First UK Based Race: #RnRLiverpool 5k

I FAILED YOU ALL!

That's right. I have let each and every one of you down.

There was a theme to the #RnRLiverpool 5k and I failed to dress appropriately. 

I know I know! You don't even want to continue reading, but I beg your forgiveness and ask you to please stick with me! I promise I still had a sparkly outfit on... :) 

Now the benefit of moving to Amsterdam is living just an hour flight away from many awesome racecation destinations. Our first: Liverpool. This was actually my first race since #DopeyChallenge in January. I took a couple of months off from running to work on my wicked tight hips.

Since I hadn't had a full or successful training cycle, I didn't have high hopes for the race weekend. Because you know I couldn't head to Liverpool and only run one race. I had signed up for the 5k on the Saturday and the Half marathon (21.1k) and 1-miler on the Sunday. 

The wife did an awesome job securing us a hotel. She snagged us a room at Jury's Inn, which was overlooking the post-race party area and stage. It took about 3 minutes to get to the Expo and 5k Start Line. SCORE!

We hit up the expo on Friday, shortly after arrving in Liverpool. While I flew through pick-up for the half and 1-miler bib, the 5k bib took over 45 minutes. I felt so bad for the young kid volunteering. He was put on a tough line. I was also somehow placed in the last corral. Let's blame that on the user error: my guess is I entered my half time for the projected 5k finish time. Luckily Runner Solutions helped me out and I was able to bump up to Corral 2 (from 9).

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On race morning, we were able to sleep in until 8am since we were so close to the Start. Now I thought the race started at 9am so we got down to the Start Corrals around 8:30. It was then I realized the race started at 9:30am. Oops! Thankfully we found a patch of sun and just hung out, people watching and soaking in the sounds.

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LIke I said. I didn't dress up to the theme - Royal Wedding - but I brought my own flair. As you can tell the race was held just hours before the famous Royal Wedding. That was DEFINITELY the talk of Liverpool as people were discussing where they would be watching and what they would be wearing. 

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Right around 9:10am, I finally made my way into the corral. The wife was nice enough to come hang out with me until we started.

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As I said I didn't have any expectation for time, but I was hoping to finish sub-30.

In case you don't know, Liverpool is the home of the Beatles. So one of the race announcers was dressed as Sargent Pepper, while the other had on a tiara and a US flag inspired outfit (she was def British). So I think they were trying to represent Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. 

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While in the corral, I finally had the wife check out the course map. Since I had zero idea if there would be any inclines involved. Ha.

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As you can see it was a little twisty turny, but I was ready to get started.

FINALLY it was time to go. The announcers did a great job of entertaining the crowd. Something you get used to at all RnR races. 

Moments after the first corral went, it was our time. A kiss to the wife and I was off.

Ohhhh friends! I cannot tell you how much I had missed the rush of starting a race. I have severely missed that since moving.

I told myself to give it everything I had for the first mile then enjoy the rest of the race.

Well my body didn't disappoint. 

Mile 1: 7:10

I was elated. Just after giving myself a little air high-five... it was character stop time. :) We came upon this Beatles statue. I convinced one of the spectators to snap a pic for me. She only took one and thankfully it came out! Clearly she isn't used to dealing with a blogger, who needs options. :P 

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Alright kickass first mile and a character stop, I was already on Cloud 9! I could feel my body already feeling the effects of a low 7:xx min/mile pace for a mile for the first time in too long. So I let my body dictate the pace for the rest of the race.

Now I expected either 1 mile markers or 1km markers, but I saw neither during the race. Now that doesn't mean they weren't there, but I didn't notice any. 

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We spotted the same band twice during the first two miles. You know I had to stop for a little dance break. :) As we made our way back towards the Start Line area, we hit our only incline (which was just the ramp up the side of the convention center). But when you move  a flatter city like Amsterdam this felt like a bigger incline than it should've felt. Ha. Thanks to my Peloton cycling classes, I was still able to power up that incline. Even though my brain wanted to walk.

Mile 2: 7:53

We were now up above the Start Line area and had a burst of spectators that had used this ledge to watch their racers kick off this 5k party. So there was a great energy coming off the incline. It was then time to make a big U back towards the convention center. As we made our first right of the U. I noticed this sign and couldn't believe the race was making me take a right instead of going left. #HowRude

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At this point, my body was like "and we're done." I dug deep and had a little pep talk with inner me that wanted to walk. I just had to push to the Finish and we could have coffee. :) 

Plus I hadn't gotten a selfie yet and you were all owed a mid-run selfie.

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Mile 3: 7:43

As my watch buzzed for Mile 3, I realized I couldn't see the Finish line in front of us. We had taken the final right turn, but there was no arch. It was then that I realized 1) this course was going to be long and 2) we would be finishing IN the convention center. Well that's a new one.

Here's the video of the Finish Line from the wife! She had plenty of time to wait for me come though.

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FINAL TIME: 24:42

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How awesome is the medal? I quickly got over the long course once I saw this!

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Also I was able to grab a bag of crisps and a pic with the Royal couple themselves. ;)

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Once you made your way through the Finish chute, the race dumped you right into the Expo. I grabbed a luggage tag from the RunDisney group then we headed out for coffee.

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Overall, the race was a blast: fun medal, good atmosphere, closed streets, classic music and fantastic costumes by participants. It was odd to not have a single water stop during the race. Usually there is at least 1 during a 5k. I also missed seeing mile/km markers. 

If we return to Liverpool, I'll def be signing up for the 5k again... but i'll remember a themed outfit if necessary!

Have you run RnR Liverpool 5k? What was your favorite part?

 

Disclaimer: I am a RockNBlog Ambassador and did receive free entry into the race. But all opinions are my own... ain't nobody got time for lyin'!