This recap is a long time coming, but I will blame injury for me not being able to put this up, mostly because it was such a great race and it was too painful to remember it to recap. This week I was able to bend my toe!!! This may sound like nonsense, but for someone who broke her toe 5 weeks ago this is progress!!! So now I am ready to tell you about my first 5K in a really long time, like since the Freaky Friday 5K on October 14, 2014.
This was actually the first race I have run since the 2015 LI 10K on 5/3/15. My next race was supposed to be the NYC Marathon in 2015 with Team ASICS, but a bad injury got the best of me and kept me away from running until February 2016. I finally got back to running regularly and when this awesome race at the Tampa International Airport on the tarmac came up, I couldn’t pass it up.
I attempted to recruit all of my running friends and not one could make it, but that was okay because I was going to head there alone and meet new people. Moving to a new place without knowing anyone makes you much more adventurous and much more outgoing, at least it did in my case.
I headed to the race at the ungodly hour of 5 am, which is insanely early for a 8 am start, but I hate to be late plus I did have to pick up my race packet. Getting there was much easier than I thought and only took like 20 minutes. Parking was incredibly easy and even though packet pick up started slightly late, it went fast which left me with over an hour to kill prior to the actual race.
While waiting for the race to start I watched many planes take off while checking out all the awesome views from the tarmac. I hit the CRUNCH table and spoke with a few trainers, who I loved!! They offered an awesome deal for the runners, $17.99/month. I did end up joining, although it is a little to far for me and I think I am going to end up cancelling.
I participated in the CRUNCH warm-up and afterward headed to the start. I talked with many people including a fellow Sparkle Skirt fan! I ended up talking to this amazing lady who has run a billion races and gave me advice on the best races to run in Florida!
The race started promptly at 8 am right after the national anthem. I had fully intended to run a conservative race, but the excitement got the best of me. My first mile was an 8:43 pace, way faster than I had run in a long, long time. I got all excited that I could keep this pace up and PR on a flat course, but then the sun started to beat down. As you can imagine a tarmac at the airport had no shade and it started to get hot. By mile two I was dying. Even though it was hot and it was hard to run, I knew it was only 3.1 miles so I pushed as hard as I could, my best pace was actually 7:55!!!! I finished strong and that’s all that counts. It definitely felt good to race again, what a high.
I stayed around for a little while and ate some food offered by the sponsors-Ulele, Columbia, Cafe Con Leche and more. I was going to wait around for the raffles, but since you didn’t have to be there to win, I decided to hit the road!!!
This was a great race overall that I would definitely run again! I mean when will you get a chance to run on the tarmac at an airport?? I also loved the shirt and that they included a kit to make your race medal into a lanyard for your keys-best use of a medal to date:
How cool is this?!?!? I made my finisher medal into a keychain!!! I love that this was in my swag bag! I needed a new lanyard to hold my keys and now I have one I earned!! What a great idea @flytpa Every race should do this!!! #tpa5k #racepacerunner #running #runchat #5K
A photo posted by Toni (@runninglovingliving) on
The only con I have for this race is that it starts a little late for a Florida race. By 8am it is already hot and the fact that the tarmac has no shade makes this a pretty hot race. The only saving grace is that it is only a 5K.
If you live in the Tampa area I would definitely check this race out in 2017. Also considering that it sold out this year I would jump on it pretty quick when registration opens up!!!
Have you ever run a race at an airport?