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Dallas Hot Chocolate 15k/5k race review

Sunday, February 12, 2012

The day started early that morning. 4:30 am to be exact. I needed to leave the house around 5:15 or 5:20 in order to drive the 20 or 30 minutes to pick up my friend that was running with me. While I was getting dressed she texted me saying that Ram Racing (the timing company of the race) sent us an email. I asked her why. They told us that if our pace was slower than 12 min per mile (which in our case 12 min per mile is faster than our normal 13:30 to 14 min mile pace) we should switch to the 5k instead of the 15k. Ummmmmm let me think about that for a second? NO! They said that they were worried because it was 29 degrees and were worried about hypothermia. Funny, I never got that email for the White Rock Half Marathon that I ran back in December and that race was cold AND wet. We both didn’t want to switch. Mainly because we really do think they were worried more for their volunteers that had to wait for us instead of the actual runners. They weren’t going to offer us a refund of the overage that we would pay if we moved down in distance.

So I left the house and headed her way. While I was driving I ate my breakfast smoothie (which was harder than I thought) and my oatmeal. I picked her up and we headed to Fair Park (near downtown Dallas). We both wanted to get their early so we didn’t have to deal with a parking nightmare (which I heard it ended up being). We got there around 6:20 or 6:25. I am very glad that they let us wait inside the automotive building so we didn’t freeze while we were waiting on the race to start. It was nice and warm in there.

I participate in a Biggest Loser Challenge. I am on the Sassy Shamrock Sherriff team. I was lucky to meet up with one of my fellow teammates Kay. She was participating in her very first race (the 5k). I called her the night before and advised her to make sure that she wore a warm jacket, covered her ears in some way, and to wear gloves. She would have been miserable if she hadn’t. Here is a picture of us before the race. Due to time issues I didn’t get to meet up with her at the end. It was soooo good to meet her!

I was going to meet up with a few other SparkPeeps but things just didn't work out this time.

They called all of the 5k participants first. They started about 30 minutes before we did. We didn’t go out to the starting line until the last minute. Our corral was at the back so it’s not like it mattered when we went. Here is a picture of my friend (Tammy) and I before the race:

The first mile went well. The only downside is that the streets of downtown Dallas aren’t level and have tons of cracks/pot holes. Somewhere during that first mile my friend stepped wrong. Her knee started hurting! Uh oh! She felt like it as a painful popping feeling. At the 2 mile water stop we stopped in a parking lot to let her stretch that leg. It didn’t really help her. She was still in pain. She felt bad because she felt like she was slowing me down (she knew I wanted to finish in less than 2 hours) so she let me go ahead of her. I thought of her when I hit the 4 mile marker and water stop. I thought about texting her that there was a courtesy van and ambulance at that stop. But I soon forgot and kept going. The route was VERY hilly. And whoever thought to put a mile just before mile 9 needs to get beaten up! I saw that particularly steep hill and decided to walk it instead of try to run it. I do intervals of running and walking. I didn’t care if it was a run or not. I walked that steep hill. I then ran down the hill. I was sure I wasn’t going to make it in less than 2 hours and that really bummed me out. I stepped up my pace just a little bit and saw the finish line. I noticed the time on my watch. If I stepped it up just a little bit more I could at least finish the race in 2 hours (not less than but at least in 2 hours). I managed to finish the race in EXACTLY 2 hours. Which is (and I can’t remember which) either 5 minutes or 9 minutes faster than my previous personal record! Woohoo!!!!!!!!!! My pace was just under 13 min per mile with is a minute faster than what I do in my half marathon training! Yippee!!!!

I then checked my phone! Several missed calls and several texts from my friend Tammy. She made it to mile 6 and then had to hand in the towel. She knew she wouldn’t make it to the end (and she wouldn’t have!). I proceeded immediately into the Automotive building once again to try to find her. That is when I meet up with a couple of friends of mine from work. Since this was the Hot Chocolate race they had fondue instead of the typical race fare. I ate the apple slices, 1 marshmellow, and a bite of the banana before I had to throw it away. I had pushed myself pretty hard at the end and I was very nauseated. So fondue was not what my body wanted. Bummer, because it was tasty. I was able to drink a cup of the hot cocoa (which was the best hot cocoa I think I’ve had…EVER). The picture below (which I took from a friend of mine’s blog because I didn’t take a picture of the fondue) is what they gave us for post-race food:

Overall, I was pleased with the race. It was cold, but at least it wasn’t wet! I finished in a good time. My friend made the good decision to stop while she was ahead (and before she got seriously hurt). She is still hurting today and saw a doctor earlier. Nothing is broken so they don’t know what is going on. Would I do this race again? Definitely!

The official race pictures haven't been posted yet (you know...the ones where you are crossing the finish line), but I am pretty sure that I will buy those (like I've done every other race).

On the race front I do have a couple more races planned for the spring. Those races are the Dallas Trinity Levee Bridge 10k on March 3rd and the Dallas Rock N Roll half marathon on March 25th. If anyone out in SparkLand is going to be at these races send me a SparkMail and we can meet up.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    How awesome!!! So glad you made your goal! You are such an inspiration. Hopefully one day I will be up to speed with you on the race front!! Good luck at your other two races!!!
    3253 days ago
  • no profile photo CD8742031
    3259 days ago
    You rocked it girlie! Glad to see you at a race I was in. See you at the Trinity River Levee 10k!!!

    3259 days ago
  • 135TOGO
    emoticon emoticon
    Way to go, Im glad you were able to complete the race and improve your time as well, Good for you! Sorry your friend ended up getting hurt but glad nothing is broken.

    Thanks for sharing!
    3261 days ago
    Great blog, commemorating a fun day! It was fun to meet you, and thanks for the encouragement and the tips on what to wear. I'm out of town on March 3rd, or I'd do another race.... Not up to a HM yet, but hope to be by the end of the year.... Please keep me posted on other events in the area! emoticon
    3261 days ago
    Great job! BTW, I love your disney background =)
    3261 days ago
  • DANA564
    Great review! Yeah the email made me a little uneasy but I went for the full 15K too and I'm glad I did. We are about the same pace. I finished in 1:59 just right ahead of you. I'm looking forward to the RocknRoll in March. We will have to meet up!
    3262 days ago
    Great blog to read!!!! I am in the vicinity (about 2 hours away) and am very interested in some of the Dallas races. The Hot Chocolate race seems right up my alley! I am adding you as a friend so I can read about your other races!!!!! Thanks for sharing!
    3262 days ago
  • GLMOM2
    emoticon work!

    3262 days ago
    I had to LOL at the hypothermia thing - like I'm guessing the person writing it is NOT a runner or they would have known that long before 5k you'd be warmed up!! Good job - sorry you didn't get to eat more of that yummy chocolate!!
    3262 days ago
  • no profile photo CD8332469
    AWESOME!! Yay, besides not packing my appropriately, I let the email scare me!! boo! Regret it now, check out my blog if you have time "the 15k that wasn't" I am also doing the Dallas RnR half, maybe we can meet up. Congrats again for doing it and having a good race!!!
    3262 days ago
    Well done!
    3262 days ago
    Congrats!! That's an awesome time!
    3262 days ago
  • MABTE52
    So Proud of you!
    3262 days ago
  • MONIKA1948
    emoticon emoticon
    3262 days ago
    Nice job!! and that email was ridiculous. At 29 degrees I'm considering leaving my second layer at home. Hypothermia? Give me a break. You made the right decision not to step down.
    3262 days ago
    Great Job Michelle!!!
    3262 days ago
    I TOTALLY agree - whoever did that course and put that bridge/hill at mile 9 should be beaten to say the least! WOW what a tough course!! I think this was the toughest I've ran to be honest with you. The DRC Half was hilly, but this had a few major hill that killed me!

    Congrats on taking on the 15K in the cold! Sorry we didn't get to meet!
    3262 days ago
    This is so awesome! emoticon

    I'm just learning how to run, and can only go for 10 minutes at a time. I'd love to get where you are someday!
    3262 days ago

    NOW I DO have to ask this,, hmm "WHAT is "COLD"? LOLOLOL If you saw my post on my home page,,,it says tonight its getting down to MINUS 10 wind chill and real temp is 1. SO HMMMMMM There are NOT any races up here til Spring. To MUCH ICE and the chances of FALLIN are to REAL !!!

    YOU GO HON !! YOU GO !! DO NOT forget to count this time on the team page as the 120 mins ! WOOHOOOO !!! AGAIN ! SO PROUD OF YOU !!!!
    3263 days ago
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