Last year for Christmas, our family decided instead of buying each other gifts, we would buy our own gift. We wrapped it up and on Christmas morning we unwrapped and showed everyone what we bought ourselves. This way everyone got what they wanted and there would be no returns. So I bought myself a race entry to the Seattle Hot Chocolate 15k. (For those that aren’t aware, 15k = 9.3 miles)
Since I started my new job my schedule is a little hectic. I’m trying to balance home life and working with travel can be challenging at times and this week was no different. It started Friday when I had to pick up my race bib. I got out of the office later than I expected, raced over to the expo, picked up my bib and then headed south. Traffic, of course was not fun. Saturday, the hubby and I went to a movie and spent some good quality time.
Sunday, I woke up at 4 am and headed back north to the race. It was a beautiful day but chilly day! The starting line was right by the Space Needle and the good thing about races starting in this area, is the Armory is nearby and you can wait inside where it’s warm. I didn’t know anyone racing so I stretched by myself and waited. I always feel a bit weird going to a race by myself but I’ve done it a lot and I have my own little routine.
This is actually a big race. They have a 5k that starts first (6:55 am, I think) and then the 15k at 7:55am. I got in my corral and looked around for people I knew. I saw a few people I knew but not enough to go up and say hi. I synced my watch and turned on my music and I was ready to go.
Once we started, I got in my groove and was happy with my pace. This is a really hilly course but it didn’t seem to be bothering me. At mile 3, I was running and looking around and noticed a woman with a race shirt from the NYC marathon. I thought, oh I ran that race! As I got closer, I realized it was my friend Bethany! I was so excited to see someone I knew and I ran up beside her and said hello. We were both running our own race but as it turns out, we were running about the same pace. Even though we didn’t chat much, we helped each other out by pushing each other to keep the pace. We both ended with a PR!
At the end, I was very happy with my time. 1:23 (8:53 min pace) which was 11 minutes quicker than the last time I ran this race back in 2013! This race is super organized which is why I like this race and have now run it twice. They have chocolate fondue at the finish line and nice race schwag – instead of a t-shirt, they have a hoodie sweatshirt. This was the first year they had medals for all the 15k finishers (which of course was in the shape of a chocolate bar) The only thing that would make this better is if it was called the Chocolate and Wine 15k…