Blame it on the rain, my outlook for this year’s running of the AJC Peachtree Road Race – the world’s largest 10k with 60,000 runners – was negative.
The day before the race I was running errands and kept driving into this:
|Don’t worry I was parked here not driving and photographing|
I got soaked just going to and from the car! When I got home I checked the forecast for the race.
The forecast was showing a band of clouds from the Gulf up to normally HotLanta with rain all day long, some thunderstorms and we were in a flash flood warning. I was SO in a funk at this point, the thought of running in the pouring rain made me sad. The Peachtree is a social race for me, though I run alone, I do NOT run for time. I love taking pictures and enjoying the festive vibe.
Of course my mind went to the worst – pouring rain, blistered feet from wet shoes, chaffing from wet clothes…the list goes on. Thanks to my friends, I was NOT bowing out of the race.
|BGP=Big Girl Panties, I LOVE Allen for this comment.|
|Julia’s first 10k and so positive!|
I decided on what to wear and added a cheap disposable rain poncho in my American Graffitti Sparkle Skirt leg pocket – another amazing use for this fashionable function. I prepared with ziplocs for my phone and personal items. I decided NOT to take my camera with me for the race because I just didn’t want to risk ruining it. My Raw Threads Boston Wicked Strong shirt was a last minute addition. The race organizers had asked the participants to wear Yellow and Blue to support and remember our friends in Boston. Laid out my stuff and set the alarm for 6am – my wave started at 8:14.
|Flat Julie minus the red hat|
I was excited wear my Team #RUN3rd Patch with my bib for the first time and wrote my race dedications on my arms.
My Team #RUN3rd race dedications: for my Brother Phil who passed away in December from lung cancer, my son Caleb born 16 weeks too soon and lived only 9 days and for Patty’s son Super Jake a child cancer victim who was taken too soon. As a last minute addition, I ran for Jodi who had just had her first day of chemo. They had been through so much, surely I could handle rain.
Race morning, it appeared any rain during the race would be light. I felt better about the race, but decided I didn’t want to stand around in the rain, so I put off leaving until as late as possible.
The course is 6.2 miles, NOT an out and back. I decided to just park at one of the closest MARTA train station and walk to the start – per map my run 1.6 miles! I had planned to meet up with friends from various groups before and after the race. My mistake, I completely bagged those plans thinking it might start pouring and wanted to minimize my standing around time. I apologize to to y’all for being such a weather chicken.
HERE’S A MARTA TIP: Get your Breeze Card loaded up before the day or the race. I think I waited in line like 25 minutes just to get my fare onto my card.
I began the walk to the start with a bottle of water – man it was humid and ate a banana and Go-gurt on the way. Its completely flat so it wasn’t bad. I stopped at the porta potties and took care of business and approached the starting waves. I was in group K, Group E had just started when I got there – 4 minutes between start waves….I thought about Allen started and smiled about my BGP – my Sparkle Skirt!
I looked around for some people….some I had never met in real life and came up short handed so decided to just walk to Group K to start. I heard someone yell my name….it was Brandi and Jenmy blogger friends and local running buddies!
In the spirit o the rain, they had dressed up for the great duck weather!
I found my way the start and yeah, still no rain, was really missing my camera but I did have my Phone, so I used it to document my race. Sadly some photos are not there that I know I had people take, oh well…..
With that, I give you MY race in pictures!
|Oompah Loompah’s in K…all the Kool Kids were there|
Passed under the big old flag, its really quite spectacular and onto the starting line.
|Its 5oclock somewhere I guess…it was like 8:16am our time.|
|Oh Yes! On Both Counts.|
|Somebody forgot her shoes at home and this was all she had…6.2 in Sandals – yeah anyone can do it in running shoes.|
|The AMAZING Stewarts! Best spectators EVA!|
|My stranger pacer in Orange and Yellow – easy to spot kept me sharp and focused. Stayed with him for a while.|
|Thanks for the Krispy Kreme kind spectator! Oh I ate the whole thing too.|
|Blueberry smoothie, why yes please!|
|My friend Joanna….the year I ran my first half way back in ’99 I was her youth leader at church. Now she is expecting CONGRATS J&A!|
|Used to think these apartments were so cool. Thanks for the support Red Solo Cup People.|
|That went by quick!|
|Holy water on the right, Blessings on the left!|
|Thanks for the little flag Ms E! Standing with the FABULOUS Joan M – went to school with her kids.|
|Smelled like a Bar on this portion, I wonder why? Wash that Cinnabon down.|
|And that is all I have to say about that.|
|Uphill, Cardiac Hill, worse than Heartbreak Hill or so they say.|
|Me and the Patriotic Morph suit people.|
|Sheperd Center, Lots of Amazing Cheerleaders and Wheelchair Athletes who had already finished the race to cheer us on. Started go get emotional and tear up a tad. Support is overwhelming!|
|An amazing place.|
|Pancho Signs! Chance of Rain Wasn’t Stopping Them.|
|Luckily the worst hill has Chest Pain Center at top! Emotional Alert, this hospital is the last place I told my mom I loved her and where we said hello and goodbye to Caleb. I was in full on tears at this point but felt great otherwise.|
|The race volunteers are the best! SO MANY and LOTS of water always available. THANK YOU.|
|The top of the hill! Thanks for the water sprayers City of ATL! Not needed today though.|
|McDonalds gave out smoothies, Burger King the Cinnabon…Chick Fil A had the Cow out.|
|FRUIT! Another random stranger. Passed on the cheese ball toss though. You gotta pace yourself for all the snacks.|
|One more big hill !|
|Over the Brookwood Interchange I75-I85.|
|50 States Marathon Club!|
|Miss Daisy’s Temple!|
|The High Museum of Art – go check out the girl! Calder sculpture on the lawn.|
|Wow this is an old reusable shirt!|
|Go ahead and read, don’t let us disturb you!|
|FINALLY I see the coveted shirt. Meh, not a black t-shirt fan and the red is more orange than this photo.|
|YES WE ARE!|
|One more mile! Plus .2|
|THIS Was a fun group!|
|Whose to blame when a party really gets out of hand? Yo, its THE WATCH PARTY!|
|The very blurry end!|
|Red faced must be done|
|MUD PIT, Piedmont Park|
|This was one huge peach!|
|Post race Popsicle and mini ice cream sandwich! Thanks Blue Bell!|
|Always on my mind…..all through the race!|
|The walk back to Marta Train…. 1.4 miles! Look its the Oopmah Loompahs again!|
|Back on the train. The smelliest public transportation ride you will ever take.|
|Home, showered and done. Sporting my medal.|
|This is the first year they offered a medal. Its really nice. You had to pay extra and well you got it pre-race.|
WHEW, that is it. It was fun and so glad I did it again. If you want to kick off your Fourth of July with a blast, sign up next year for the AJC Peachtree Road Race. Its a lottery, register online around St Patrick’s day.
Thanks to all who made this fun race possible: The Atlanta Track Club who knows how to put on a great race, The Volunteers, The Spectators, The Running Community and race entrants. Without you, it would just be another 6.2 mile run…..you make it spectacular!
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