Last Friday, I ran my seventh race of the year, and my second repeat race. Just like last year, Preston and I ran the Firecracker 5k with Team RWB on the 4th of July as a way to help raise funds for the USO. Having run this race last year, I was well aware of the course and knew that I needed to pace myself for a gradual uphill during the last portion of the course.
Just like with other Potomac River Running races, bib pickup was super easy – I think I was in and out of the PR Store in Reston in less than two minutes when I picked up our bibs last Wednesday. There are so many benefits to PR Races, including free race photos, plenty of post race food and water, and very reasonable registration prices. If you live in the DC area and haven’t checked out their races yet, you definitely should!
On Friday we arrived at Reston Town Center, where the race was held, about 45 minutes before the start of the race. While driving there, it was raining on and off, and I started to think that we’d be running this race in the rain. However, once we parked the car it stopped raining, and the humidity was temporarily under control. We met up with fellow Team RWB members for a pre race photo and a pep talk from the DC area chapter captain, and then we headed to the start line.
Because there were only about 2,500 runners and walkers, there weren’t any corrals for this race. However, there were suggested start areas based on predicted paces, so Preston and I lined up in the 9:00-10:00 minute/mile pace area. Although his pace is much faster than mine, he wanted to start the race with me. While we waited for the race to start, I noticed a TLC camera, and began to wonder why TLC was at a small local race. During the race itself I noticed TLC’s presence another two or three times, which had me intrigued as to what was going on. I had my suspicion, and after the race I got my answer.
As the race started, I noticed that my legs felt very heavy. I had done a lower body weight training workout two days prior, and my legs were definitely feeling it. It took about a mile before I felt like I had finally gotten into a good groove. By this time though, the humidity had definitely kicked into high gear, and it became increasingly difficult to breathe while running.
I made it to the water station without having to stop for a walk break, and after the water station ran again without walking until around the 2.25 mile point of the course. During the last mile of the race I took two additional walk breaks – for one minute each – and during my second walk break I knew that it would be difficult to meet my A and B goals.
I finished the race in 32:35 (10:29 min/mile pace), which is 2.5 minutes faster than last year’s Firecracker 5k finish time! Although I ran this race almost a minute slower than my current 5k PR, I’m more than happy with the improvement from last year’s finish time. I also met my C goal, which was to run the race faster than I did last year.
Because of everything that we have going on with our new house right now, we didn’t stick around for long after we crossed the finish line. On our way back to our apartment, fellow blogger Jennifer from Run Jenny Run posted this tweet on Twitter:
reality show spotting in reston – the duggar kids (well the older one) pic.twitter.com/liPVpTxIhW
— Run Jenny Run (@jenniferrunning) July 4, 2014
My suspicion had been correct: Josh and Anna Duggar were at Reston Town Center that morning, and Josh ran the 5k, finishing the race in 40:06. Who knows: maybe I’ll see myself or somebody else I know on a future episode of “19 Kids and Counting.”
QOTD: Have you ever run a local race and spotted a celebrity at it?