Sunday, June 2, 2013

Freihofers Run for Women 5k Race Recap

Despite being from the Albany area, I wasn't a runner until I moved away so I never participated in the Freihofers Run for Women. ( I don't come from a family of runners either)  Last year I had signed up in January but ended up DNS because of the ankle injury 2 weeks prior.  This year I wasn't going to run, but changed my mind once I realized I'd be stuck in the neighborhood regardless if I ran because of parking/traffic I figured I might as well give it a whirl and run. I ran the course (incorrectly) and then following the actual route several times within the last 2 weeks.  I definitely think it helped since I was prepared for the inclines, turns, and road conditions. 

On Friday, I walked down to the plaza to pick up my stuff before my volunteering shift at the expo. I decided to volunteer (mostly) because it would keep me from finding friends at happy hour or staying out too late.  It ended up being a blast and a nice way to get excited for the race. Packet Pick Up is my favorite volunteering activity so far.

so many Freihofer shirts!

Saturday morning was a breeze.  Since I live so close to the start, I stayed in bed as long as I could before I began to feel anxious.  I got up and made some breakfast, did the dishes and cleaned up my apartment.  

The security was impressive.  They had narrow passages ways the required passing a police or guard who would check any bags that were being carried.  They barricaded the front so you had to walk around and enter the corrals by going through a second security point.  I was told that this was the first time they had designated pace corrals and since my corral was in the shade, I ventured down and began making my way.
corrals in front
and the ladies behind
I knew a lot of ladies running (via Facebook & Twitter) but didn't make any plans to find anyone. Yet out of the 5,000 runners I ran into the only person I run with in the capital district Jess. She, her mom and I stood around together as we waited for our run in the park.

Jess & I pre race- yes I was that person wearing the event shirt to the event.

After the national anthem (and the women behind me that was confused and thought that SHE was singing for everyone), Joan Benoit Samuelson offered a moment of silence and then we were off.  I started with Jess and her Mom for about the first mile and then I dropped back just a bit.  It was hot and they were running a faster pace than I wanted.  I try to make it a point not to complain about the weather since I CHOSE to live here instead of San Diego, but it was toasty.  After practicing on the route a few times, I knew where I wanted to be (and how I could maximize the shade) I skipped the first water station because I knew I was well hydrated and would survive the 5k without stopping. 

My least favorite part of the course is running on Western because it is deceptively long.  I powered along and did grab a cup of water for a small sip and a pour down my head. As we turned back into the park, I began looking for familiar faces/my neighbors since my street connects to the park.  I only saw one, but just having that to focus on helped since I was starting to lose steam. 

Once we're back on Madison Ave it was smooth sailing, the crowd picks up (way more men watching than women since all the women are running) and there is a decline at the end.  I finished at 29:56. (9:39) Considering how slow I've been running this year, I am stoked!

view of the last 400m from the plaza stairs

I didn't hang around long, I grabbed my free snacks and walked back up to my apartment.  I relaxed for a bit before taking a cold shower and walking back down to the plaza for the volunteer lunch.  I chatted with other runners/volunteers and enjoyed the music and food.

I felt super involved in this race from being at the expo Friday night, the race, and the volunteer party. I really liked the atmosphere.  I can definitely see why it's a favorite.  Since I know that I'm not moving out of my apartment, I'll definitely be back for more next year!


  1. That was cool that you volunteered. We finished near each other.

  2. Sounds like a success! Congrats

  3. It was a wonderful race! Great job. :)