This race was one of those experiences that I’ll never forget.
Last Saturday, Preston and I ran the Dulles Day 10k on the Runway. After running the 5k last year, I was very excited when I found out that a 10k option was added this year. After an unforgettable experience last year, this year didn’t disappoint.
In order to prevent race morning stress, we opted to pick up our packets the day before the race. Packet pickup was held at a local hotel, and we were in and out of the hotel in less than five minutes. This isn’t unusual for Potomac River Running races, which is one of the many reasons that we love running races that are hosted by this local running store.
The race utilized a different runway than last year’s race. Last year the race started and ended on the north end of the airport, and we had to park in a remote parking lot near economy parking at the airport. This led to major backups, and a delay in the start of the race. This year, the race started and ended at the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum, which is on the south end of the airport. Parking in the museum parking lot went very smoothly, and I hope that if they host this race again next year (this year was only the second year for the race), that they use the same course that they did this year.
After arriving at the museum and going through security, we quickly utilized the bathrooms in the museum lobby, and then made our way through the museum out towards the start line. I’ve never been to this museum before, and was fascinated by the old airplanes that we got to see as we made our way outside. It was a great way to set the scene for the race!
The 5k started ten minutes before the 10k did. At 7:40 a.m., the 10k runners started the race, and within less than a mile we made our way onto the runway. Because the majority of the race was on the runway, the course was extremely flat. The course was an out and back course, and we spent the majority of our time running alongside the terminal. This was one of the most fun races that I’ve run recently!
Although I was sick, the adrenaline of running on an airport runway fueled me to run this race to the best of my ability. I ran the first four miles on the conservative side, utilizing 3:1 run-walk intervals, enjoying the race and taking lots of pictures. Since I was still feeling fairly good, I decided to increase my intervals to 4:1 for the last two miles of the race, and successfully met my B goal, just missing my A goal by nine seconds! I finished the race in 1:08:11, PRing by more than two minutes!
This race is one of those races that I’ll definitely be running again. Between the flat course, the great race organization, and the scenic course, it was another memorable day and a race that definitely won’t be forgotten!
QOTD: What unique race course have you recently run on?