Last Wednesday I decided to run my very first 15k on Friday, the 4th of July. For some reason, running a race on the 4th seemed so cool, yet I’ve never done it before. And now I have.

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Friday I luckily woke up after 4 alarms. I made it to Coronado around 6am and even then had trouble finding parking. Erin (my mini-me) and I met up and jogged a mile over to the bib pick-up area. From then, we ran a little more and then lined up in what soon would be the free-for-all stampede.

Right from the get-go I planned on running this as a training run. With a few more miles tacked on, this would be in place of my weekly long run and right before the 4th of July fun really started. That being said, I was definitely unprepared mentally because I didn’t even look to see where the course ran!  So all of it was basically a surprise and a new experience.

The race starts at 7am on the grass at Tidelands Park, on the bayside. It runs straight out towards the water and then hooks a right, and you basically follow a path that goes under the bridge and along the golf course. Then you run around the marina, and across the street from the Hotel Del Coronado.  Finally, you enter the Naval Amphibious Base, where you run a good portion of the race…which can get quite boring at times.  However, it was cool, because if you didn’t have a  bib on, you weren’t allowed to enter the base.  Luckily I had good company and conversation to keep my mind busy during this hot and flat miles!  After a turn around point within the base, you basically just follow the course back out to the finish.

By the end it was HOT.  The sun was shining and we were literally drenched in a 4th of July sweat bath. At this time, I was just hoping for the race to be over, and didn’t try too hard to push it.

As we approached the finish line, we ran as fast as we possible could against the grass. Our coach happened to be the announcer and when we crossed the finish line he said “here comes Ashleigh, and her twin sister, Erin!”  We ended up with a 1:22:42.  Nothing to brag about, but nothing to be ashamed of, but an automatic PR.

All in all, it was a flat but humid race.  The only part I didn’t like was the long and tedious miles inside the Navy base.  I like the idea of running a race on the Fourth of July, so next year, maybe I’ll just stick to the 5k option!

Splits according to my Garmin (1:22:47):
1 – 8:12
2 – 8:30
3 – 8:46
4 – 8:44
5 – 8:39
6 – 8:52
7 – 8:54
8 – 9:01
9 – 9:18
Last .43 – 3:47

Have you ever run a race on the 4th of July?

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