I’ve been having a lot of fun doing races that I’ve partaken in for the last couple of years. It’s fun to look at my pictures and running progress. So before I dive into the recap of this years Run the Runway, I want to take a look back at the last two years.
2014: 23:09 (2nd overall female, 1 in AG)
2015: 20 weeks pregnant! Time: 25:30
2016: 22:07 (2nd overall female, 1 in my AG)
This race is pretty fantastic. It’s one of my favorites every year because it’s the only time the Airforce base shuts down the runway and the only chance us runners have to experience it as a race course! Two years ago the race started on the runway but ended elsewhere on the base. Then last year they changed the course to being completely on the runway. This is fun because we get to run along the planes more but it does make the course a VERY hot one. Last year my only complaint was that the one water stop they offered was close to the one mile marker. With how bad the heat was and how many walkers there were, I thought that maybe it would be better to offer two water stops along this course.
This year the race stepped it up even more. In our race packets this year we got some pretty nice swag that included flip flops! This race has never had a shirt option and I’ve been okay with that because it’s only $20 entry fee for this race. Getting flip flops was a nice change of pace from the usual race t-shirts.
Getting to this race might seem like it would be difficult because it’s the Airforce Base but in reality, it’s super easy! Once on base there are volunteers and road block signs that direct you straight to where you need to be. After parking, I hit the bathroom and then went through the security check. This was new, a barricade up that you were metal detector wanded to go through. Some people might complain with it but you guys… this is the Airforce base, there HAS to be some sort of security measures in place. You can’t tell me that you can’t handle a 30 second wanding in order to be safe during the run. The only problem we found was that the port-a-potty was on the other side of the barricade. So in order to go to the bathroom you had to get back in line to be wanded.
You can’t beat the view of this race.
Something new this year at the race was a band playing some really awesome music! They were playing classic rock, pop, and even hip hop music. It was a really nice treat to have the live music before and after the race.
I didn’t get much of a warm up in because around the airforce base you can find yourself in areas you just aren’t allowed. So I did a short jog with Reyna and figured I’d just save my energy for the brutal heat. We headed to the start line where I saw Penney as well. Lots of friends were at this race to enjoy the torture of this course.
Mile 1: 6:56 There isn’t much excitement to this course. There aren’t a ton of turns or tight curves. This race is just all out on the runway. I started out slower and let some people pass me by. I knew I was going to need lots of energy at the end after the sun had beaten down on me for two miles. I didn’t really have anyone running around me either. I just set into my pace and then started to give myself goals of catching up to the next person in front of me.
Mile 2: 7:07 I was doing a decent job of keeping pace. At this point I had worked my way up to second female. The cool thing about this course was there were no trees, so you could always see everyone out there running. I was able to see the girl rocking first place and I knew that I was never going to catch her. My goal was just to maintain my place as second female and complete the course better than I did the first year that I ran it. Mile 2 was also the only water stop on the course but it was off the course. Or maybe it was on the course and people were cutting in front of it. Either way, in order to get water, you had to go out of your way to get it. Not good. No one was going for the water and I didn’t bother either. On a hot course like this, there should be 2 water stops at mile 1 and mile 2.
Mile 3: 7:32 I still felt really good. The heat was painful but it wasn’t slowing me down as significantly as I had expected it to. I could see the finish and I just powered through. When I hit before the 3 mile marker I could see that they had a fire hose set up with a gigantic sprinkler basically for us to run under! This was one of my favorite additions this year.
.1 sprint at 6:04 pace. I had enough in me to keep pushing! I always aim to have enough juice to speed up at the end. If I don’t have that push at the end then you know it was an absolute terrible race for me.
The other great thing about this race, after we crossed the finish line there was cold, wet hand towels with an ice cube in them for us! Post race included more music from the band, freeze pops, bananas, granola bars, some goodies from local sponsors that were set up, and the awards ceremony. Overall male and female winners get an actual piece of the runway. Every year the airforce base cuts out a piece of the runway to run tests on, once they are done they take a piece and turn it into a beautiful medal piece. It’s a really unique award. Then the top 3 in each age group get a medal as well (not made of the runway) I was the second overall female but since this race only gives out awards to the overall female and not top 3, I took home 1st in my age group. I love this race and all the new stuff they added this year. You can truly tell that they want to keep making it better with each year.
My only two notes for them for next year is to move the bathrooms to the other side of the barricade and to make the water stops better. Other than that, great job to the team who put on this race! We had a blast.