Tuesday, May 28, 2019

Houston Memorial Day 10K Race Re-cap


Memorial Day weekend has now come and gone, and I'm left with a deep appreciation for those who have served or do serve our country, good memories of a family get together and happiness spent with friends racing the Memorial Day 10k.

https://houstonrunningco.com/houston-holiday-series
source

On May 27th, 2019 a few of us got together to run the Memorial Day 10k, one race in a series of holiday races put on by the Houston Running Co. One of my friends who I ran with is a U.S. Army veteran, so that made it all the more special. This race was held at St. Thomas High School and was an inaugural run, meaning that this was the first in what will probably be an annual race for the Houston Running Company. As always, I made sure to get there a bit early to combat finding good parking and it paid off. I somehow made it into the faculty lot by the tennis courts, meaning that I didn't have to fight the good fight in the parking garage or park a few blocks over. While waiting for my friends to make it I made the familiar trek to the port-o-potty line then to the starting line to warm up a bit and stretch out.

Everyone waiting around for the race to begin


Cars pulling into the parking garage. 
There was plenty of parking but it was packed so it is a good idea to arrive early regardless.



Heading toward the start line.

The 5k portion of this race had sold out and the 10k was almost sold out, so there was definitely a crowd but they did a good job at capping the entries. I met up with my friends, Tiffany and Robyn. Robyn was running the 10k while Tiff had signed up for the 5k. Fresh off a track meet, she was looking for some shorter, speedier miles.

Oh that early morning wake up call!
My AWESOME mom made me a custom red white and blue running headband a
while back though, so I was pretty stoked.
After we gathered around for a failed attempt at the pledge of allegiance (don't worry guys, it's been awhile since middle school and I don't think I could have remembered it either), then the Star Spangled Banner, which, thanks to BMX I know SUPER well, the race commenced.

We ran down the driveway of the school, turning left and followed the slowly rolling terrain of Memorial Dr. (ironically a GREAT road for this race to take place on!). The 5k runners turned around eventually while we continued on to Bagby. I stayed back to run it with Robyn, and it was a great way to celebrate the day with a friend. Some, well, MOST races I like to take off, do my best and run it as fast as my little legs will allow, and others like this one I will chill out and run with a friend or two. One funny thing I noticed was that so many runners were calling our small degrees of incline and decline "hills". They kept saying the hills were killer. After Big Sur nothing in Houston is a hill lol! During the run I also met another past Big Sur runner. She was at 47 marathons, and aimed to make the big 5-0, hopefully the Marine Corps Marathon, her final one. She has run the Houston Marathon each year for the past 20! I just LOVE meeting people out in the running community! I even met my running shoe twin and said hi, and she tipped me off on where to find some super cheap. Score! After our turn-around on Bagby we headed back the same way we came, this time passing the school by about .75 miles, turning back around and heading back up the driveway. We eventually came to the track where we completed a lap then hit the finish line. This race  did come up a bit short on my Garmin (that I forgot again to turn off in time 😋). It was closer to 6 miles than 6.1.

Just kidding! Lol this wasn't a PR by any means but it was a tad bit short. 
On a side note, I told Robyn we should take off in the last 100 meters or so to the finish line so we did. At the same time this guy decided to as well, so it became an all out foot race between him and I with the announcer saying over the intercom, "You shouldn't try to show up the women!" or something to that effect. Personally I loved that this man had to sprint as fast as he could to keep up with me haha! This is now the 4th distance race where I've had a sprinting foot-race to the line with a random guy, lol!

The footrace haha

Still running...

And done! Robyn's in the blue probably laughing at us.

After we finished and got our medals and some water from the amazing volunteers (thank you all SO much!!), we headed over to pick up some snacks, take a fun picture or two and grab a beer. Also, our friend Justyna showed up with her son and we all got to see them and hang out for a bit before starting our own family Memorial Day festivities.


The Holiday Run Series rocked!

Good times. 
2nd place for Tiffany!

If you are in the Houston area and looking for a fun, well run race to do, I would definitely recommend the Memorial Day 5k/10k run.

Tiffany with N and me with my bag of goodies.

If you need help deciding:

PROS:

1. Easy to get to
2. Good parking
3. Started on time
4. Great looking awards
5. Awesome medals
6. Free beer and snacks
7. Relatively flat course
8. There is always a discount code and it's not an expensive race, so last minute sign ups are easy

CONS:

1. The race was a bit short, not the full 6.2 miles (not sure about the 5k), lots of people were mentioning the distance discrepancy.
2. It's always super hot in May in Houston

Do you run races in the Summer? If so, what's your favorite?

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