Philly Hot Chocolate 15K – 4/7/18

So this year is my 3rd time running the Philadelphia Hot Chocolate 15K. They started awarding racers for their loyalty with extra swag the more races they do. So since this was my 3rd time doing this, I got a 3year beanie, pin, and cup medal! Very cool and awesome incentive for racers.

Day of the race I got up there early because I knew traffic and parking is always pretty rough for these races. Plus I had some friends doing the 5K at 7:15 so I wanted to see them off before I raced at 8. The weather was extremely cold especially with the wind. I had 2 layers of pants and shirts on, and I still kept my hoodie on till I checked my bag in. Knew it was gonna be a rough time.

I haven’t been able to run as much as I’d like lately because it’s been snowing or raining almost every day. I’ve done a decent amount of indoor running but not very much mileage.

So I was hoping to beat my record from last year. Felt good about my chances. Got into the starting corrals and noticed a lot of people had moved up from the corral they were in. So I moved up some as well. Really didn’t want to get stuck behind any walkers. Even though they tell people to start in the back if you’re planning on walking, a lot of people don’t listen and then end up blocking other racers.

Music starts, announcer counts us down and we’re off. Group actually separated very quickly. Down the street we go then back around, then up a small hill and down into the park. There was a lot of people cheering and even many with signs. Was pretty awesome to see and hear.

Down the street and I’m not a mile in and disaster strikes: shoe comes untied! Unreal since I had just tied it at the start of the race. So I stop and move to the side so I can tie it. Very frustrating especially since I had a good rhythm going.

Then the headwind starts! It’s blowing strong. Felt like I was running uphill with a weighted vest. Luckily it wasn’t an issue once we got to the turn around and went the other way.

The water and candy stations had tons of volunteers! More than I ever remember seeing before. Was good to see and it helped keep everyone moving.

Got to about mile 7 and I was sucking wind. I knew I was off my pace of where I wanted to be and I had to step it up but my legs were not feeling it. Felt like lead. Not sure what it was but chest also felt really sore, and breathing was not great. Probably something to do with the cold weather.

Mile 9 and I just had the last hill to get over. Lots of cheering and applause from the crowd. Honestly, I’m glad they were there cause it really helped push me to finish. Crossed that finish line and I had nothing left. My legs were done.

Ended up not reaching my goal time. Pretty disappointed. But I’ll be back to try again next year. Plus the racing season has just started so I’ll have other chances to reach my goals.

The Hot Chocolate at the end really hit the spot. Plus I went and made a donation to Make A Wish, one of the sponsors of the race. There were several kids from that organization there, as well as some adaptive athletes, and I got to share some high 5s with them. That made the race even that more special.

These races have the best race swag you can get for a road race. The jacket they gave this year is amazing and super comfortable. And the finisher medal for the 15K is twice as big as last years medal.

Thanks again as always for reading. Any questions regarding comments, be sure to comment below!! Thanks!! πŸ€‘πŸ‘πŸ½πŸ‘πŸ½

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