So, Saturday’s race was really, really effing cold.
The combination of snow/rain/wind/frigid temps made running perhaps the least desirable thing for any rational person to go and partake in. BF and I, however, are not rational and decided that despite it all—we would uphold our race day commitment.
The Magnuson Series is a set of races held every month in Magnuson Park, Seattle. The park is 3.1 miles around, therefore each month on race day you can choose to run a 5, 10, or 15k depending on your preference. It’s a great idea, a good course, and an easy way to keep up your racing mojo every month.
As part of a stocking-stuffer Christmas gift, BF signed us up for a 10k relay team, meaning that each of us would run a 5k, and then they would total our times together.
We arrived dressed in somewhat wintery running gear (which means instead of shorts and a t-shirt I was wearing a long-sleeved tech jersey), and we soon discovered that starting a race next to a lake when the wind is whipping in a big snow storm is somewhat equivalent to the definition of misery. We sat in the car until the last possible second, got out for a quick warm up jog, and positioned ourselves at the start line.
The race couldn’t have started soon enough. My toes, fingers, and ears were all freezing cold, and I had to have my hat strapped on super tight just to prevent it from coming off in the wind. I really had no clue how fast I was going during the first mile, as I was so distracted by the cold conditions, but when we got to the Mile 1 marker and I saw 6:59 on my watch, I was pumped. Doing the race at 7 minute miles was my goal, although I wasn’t saying it out loud. As I reached the second mile marker, I was still hovering around 14:00, though the pace had slowed down a tad. At the end, I ended up finishing unofficially around 21:57, which in 5k terms means I was running 7:05 minute miles.
Not long after I grabbed a water cup and tried to regain control of my winded/frozen lungs, I saw BF finish strongly with a 24:49, giving the “Grizzly Birds” (our obviously awesome team name) a 10k finish time of 46:46!
We both agreed the course was good, the weather sucked, and we’d definitely be doing these races again soon.
Doing 5ks are a great way to practice speed, and I highly encourage everyone, of all racing levels, to sign up for one whenever they can. I know I’ll be bulking up my marathon training with plenty of shorter races, as they’re great practice for racing strategy and general racing atmosphere.
Question: What are the worst conditions you’ve ever run or raced in?