Sunday, May 24, 2015

Stratford Hills 10k

So I'm obviously sort of partial to trail events, usually choosing to save my $ and skip road races altogether....However, even I can't deny when a road race really has it going on. This morning's 36th Annual Stratford Hills 10k in Richmond's South Side really had it going on. I ran this race a few years ago but haven't yet made it a tradition...I've been missing out! I won't skip this one again if I can help it...Here's why:
6 Groovy things about this 10k

1. It cost me $10. Doesn't get much better than that, folks.

2. Smaller is better. The more low-key the event, the more fun I have. This event has enough of a turnout to make it fun & challenging without the traffic and headaches that come with a larger event. There's enough of a crowd to offer a nice dose of that camaraderie stuff we runners love, without the fuss of wave starts or bag checks.

3. The James River. Dude, I really love that river. The course starts at the Stratford Hills Shopping center (plenty of parking, YAY!) and goes down towards the James through a neighborhood, along Riverside Drive for a nice out & back. I love running and hanging out anywhere near the river. It really is beautiful.

4. Fast & Flat...Until that last hill. What goes up must come down, and this race course is no exception. From the shopping center, we darted downhill to the river for about a mile before hitting the flat road to the turnaround and back. At about mile 5, the hill we flew down at the start was patiently waiting for our return. The last leg of the race ascended in that gradual, slow, painful sort of way that runners just love.

5. Richmond Rules. I love Richmond and I really dig the Richmond Road Runners Club. We are so lucky to have such an awesome club to call our own right here in RVA. This race was super well-organized and really fun, while showcasing the welcoming, easy-going vibe that Richmond is known for.

6. Prizes! So I didn't run fast enough to snag a sweet new hand-carved wooden winners plaque, but they gave away a few stellar door prizes, including one for Yours Truly! I hardly ever win anything, so this is actually a pretty huge deal. I snagged a sweet $50 gift card to the Positive Vibe CafĂ©, located right in the Stratford Hills Shopping Center.
Not being one to let it burn a hole in my pocket,
you know I'm gonna go spend that sucker ASAP.

Stratford Hills 10k, RVA, 5/24/15
Time- 50:19
Pace- 8:05/mi
Overall- 67/205
Age Group- 4th/13