race report: florida striders memorial day 5k {5.28.18}

I really can’t believe that it’s been six years since I lined up at my very first start line.

Sure, I haven’t been running as long as some, but six years feels like quite some time. So much has changed for me in that amount of time, and I have grown so much as a runner, and even as a person.

So it’s always nice to revisit the event that started it all: the Florida Striders Memorial Day 5K.

Timing was right for this race, back when I selected it. It came along at the end of my Couch to 5K training, was smaller than some of our other 5Ks, and was for a good cause.

Over the years, it’s become a race I’ve loved. The size is usually just right, the course is pretty and shaded, even if there are some small hills, and everything is just nice and low-key. There is an associated kids’ fun run after the 5K, and a fun little after party in the park adjacent to the finish line.

What more do you need?

S and I had opted for packet pickup at the event, and easily got our bibs and t-shirts. We had gotten a great parking spot, too, so it was easy enough to stash our extra things and take a lap around the block as a little warm up.

There was a lovely breeze, but also an underlying humidity. We used the restroom and lingered near the start. The National Anthem was sung live, and a moment of silence was observed for those who paid the ultimate price in service to our country.

The minute we started running, the breeze disappeared and the oppressive humidity took hold. It was frustrating to have to slog through such heavy air, but ’tis the season. There won’t be relief until winter.

We just pounded it out. We chatted, and laughed and cheered the leaders when they passed us on their way to the finish line. It was fun looking at the different patriotic outfits and saying hi and thank you to the spectators, volunteers and LEO who were blocking the intersections.

As soon as we crossed the finish line, the breeze seemed to return. Hello? Where were you for the last 3.1 miles?

We took a breather, and then grabbed drinks and iced watermelon that had been provided for the runners. It was the perfect treat! (And yes, I actually did look that red and miserable when we were finished. It was brutal out there).

It was a great race, with great running buddies and great medals.

Year 6 of running is off to a great start! I am hoping to cross two more states off my list, and I am on track for 1000 miles in 2018, so things are moving along in the right direction.

Do you have a race to which you always return?

How many years have you been running?

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14 Responses to race report: florida striders memorial day 5k {5.28.18}

  1. Heat aside, it sounds like a great race! I returned to the race of my very first 5K this past fall, and it was fun to be back (though I was slower this time due to lack of training!)
    I’ve been running for 8.5 years, but the last two or so have been so spotty, I’m not sure they count. I keep saying I want to really get back at it, but somehow it just hasn’t come together. Yet.
    Stacie Seidman recently posted…What’s Up WednesdayMy Profile

  2. I have a lot of races I return to every year. Another one coming up is a 4th of July 5K in a nearby town. I missed last year (hospital-bound LOL), but I’ve run it the past 3 or 4 years prior.

  3. Rachel says:

    I return to a lot of races. I think this year I might lay low and do less, though. Easier said than done, right?
    Rachel recently posted…Looking for a Scenic Half Marathon? Run the Iron Horse!My Profile

  4. Wendy says:

    Congrats! I actually have a couple of races that I mostly return to! There is a local 5k/10k around July 4 that I like to do. I’m planning on it again this year. And then there’s that half in November that I like to do.. Just did my favorite 10 miler in April…yep, I’m a creature of habit!

    • runswithpugs says:

      I’m trying out a new one for 4th of July this year, and I’m pretty excited about it.

      I think I’m a creature of habit too, but I am trying to branch out. I have a few new ones on the calendar this year and I can’t wait to see what happens with them!

  5. Darlene says:

    Freihofers 5k. 11 times.

    Your race seems perfect except for the heat. A medal and watermelon.

    • runswithpugs says:

      The heat is the heat, unfortunately. I am realizing I do much better in cooler temps, but here I am in Florida, so it’s just part of the challenge. The watermelon was an amazing touch.

  6. Renée says:

    congrats on your race! there is something really special about the first race, isn’t there???

    I have been running for 9 years. I only started actually to do something different to lose weight (I wanted to run for a long time I just really didn’t know what to do). I didn’t lose (all) the weight (I’m not done yet) from running, however I gained a whole new life from it đŸ™‚

    There are quite a few races I have returned to! Local races especially are easy to do and I often go with my running club or husband. But my favorite is Liverpool RnR; I think I’ll go back to that one until I either can’t run anymore or it no longer exists.
    RenĂ©e recently posted…Weigh-in Week #6My Profile

    • runswithpugs says:

      There really is something special about it.

      I feel like I run so many of the same races, but they are close and affordable and keep the motivation level high and strong.

      I’m actually starting to see some weight loss more recently. I’m not sure if I’m cross training better or eating better or what. It’s funny because I’m definitely not faster, which is annoying as anything, but I guess if my clothes fit and I can still keep going, that’s what matters.

  7. Andrea says:

    Can you believe 2018 is almost halfway over?? I’m so excited for you that you’re on track to do 1,000 miles! That’s so awesome.

    • runswithpugs says:

      Ugh, I can’t! This year is flying! Last year, I ran about 835, and before that my number were in the 600s. I need to bump up a little bit, but I think I can get there, or at least really, really, really close!

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