On Sunday Scot and I attended the annual Love the Run You’reWith 5K, the second in the Pacers race series for 2014. This was my first time running the race. It has a Valentine’s Day theme, and when you register you have to self-identify as single (“Stupid Cupid”), in a relationship (“Co-Dependent”), or it’s complicated (“Love ‘Em or Leave ‘Em). Each relationship category had a different colored bib, so the single people, for example, would know who to mingle with if they were still looking for a Valentine. The race packet did not include a t-shirt, but it did have a fleece blanket and a box of conversational hearts candy.
|It was COLD at the start!|
|Nice fleece blankie swag!|
|Here we are at the start - already freezing!|
|The crowd at the starting line, ready to get moving and warm up|
The course was so-so. We started near the Pentagon Row Pacers near the Pentagon City Mall and mostly ran along Army-Navy Drive, which runs alongside I-395. That meant we saw and heard cars on the interstate for most of the course, which sometimes made it difficult to carry on a conversation. The other side of the street was residential. At mid-course the water station was staffed by my running club, Shirlington Running Club. A couple years ago I worked that water station, so I knew how cold the volunteers were. The year I volunteered, the water in the cups froze over! On a hot summer run, I love ice water. On a 30 degree day…not so much. Anyway, as always the SRC volunteers were awesome, so thanks to Sherry, Jen, Megan, Bill and everyone else!
|I took my own bad run-by pic of the Shirlington Running Club volunteers, but this one is better (photo credit to Bill Arnold)|
|Megan makes sure Scot stays hydrated|
Many people ran this race in shades of red, white and pink in honor of Valentine’s day. There were a bunch of tutus as well. Everyone was quite bundled up. Scot and I wore red, though I’m not sure that we really planned it that way. We were just trying to stay warm.
|Bill surprised us, and we were running so fast that the photo is blurry! (photo credit to Bill Arnold)|
Other than at the water station, I didn’t see any friends on the course, but I knew that fellow SRC friend Pam was out there. We met up at the after party at the Pentagon Row Champps, where each runner got to choose either a mimosa or a bloody mary (I chose a mimosa). And then the SRC runners and volunteers stayed for brunch, which included a DJ and karaoke, plus Olympic figure skating on all the TVs. I must say, the service was extremely slow. I’m not sure if they were understaffed or if we had an inexperienced server who couldn’t quite hack it. It took so long to get our pancakes. At least we had some good company, and were able to keep warm.
|How'd this happen? Scot is smiling while Pam and I are making pouty faces (photo credit to Megan Sorrell)|
I may or may not do this 5K again. On the one hand, registering for it forced me to get outside and get in a short training run, and that was good for me. On the other hand, next year I could volunteer at the water station and still attend the after-party, while saving a few bucks. I will have to figure out whether registering for all of these 5Ks is what I want to keep doing in between marathons. Hmm…