Picture from Emily
With temperatures in the low 20's and wind chills bringing that down to the low teens, I'm pretty sure it's the coldest weather I have ever run in.
The morning got off to an interesting start when I was woken up by a phone call from Megan saying the fire alarm in her building had gone off and she was wondering if she could come over early to get ready for the race.
In my exhaustion what I heard was "I'm at your door, come let me in."
I was ready to roll out of bed and run downstairs to let her in, until she assured me that she in fact was not at my front door yet.
Megan eventually made her way over to my house, we bundled up in a million layers and headed off to Virginia for the race.
Luckily we were allowed to wait in the restaurant that was hosting packet pick up until minutes before the start of the race. So we grabbed a table and waited for the rest of our friends to arrive.
Megan spotted Emily, who joined our little group.
Emily, me, Megan
And Ryan and Abe made it to the start after a less-than fun morning on the metro.
Ryan, me, Abe
Waiting in the cold even for a few minutes at the start of the race was miserable. I was shivering and couldn't feel my fingers.
The race eventually got underway and I was so happy to be moving, even though after the first turn I found myself running up a massively steep uphill.
The course was a straight out and back so I knew I'd get to run back down that hill right at the end of the race. I settled in to my pace and focused on warming up.
One thing I love about out and back races is that you can look for your friends on the course. I saw my friend Zach fly past in a small group of super speedy people, and after I hit the turn around, I saw Ryan and Abe weren't far behind me and they were looking good.
The back half of the course was nothing too memorable. I hit that big downhill and just let loose around the final turn. I may have kicked it a bit too hard because I sort of felt like I was about to puke, but I crossed the finish line in 26:74, only a few seconds off my 5K PR.
Not too shabby.
Ryan and Abe finished a minute behind me in 27:47. That's almost a three-minute PR for Ryan and an awesome debut race for Abe.
Our group of finishers: Abe, Ryan, Megan, Emily, me and Zach
After regrouping inside and taking a minute to warm up, we piled into cars and headed over to brunch.
Belgian waffles and omelets have never tasted so warm and satisfying.
Congrats to everyone else who braved the cold weather and ran the race yesterday. It was a fun and well organized event, despite the freezing temps. Apparently there were even two proposals at the finish line.