Happy Friday, friends! Welcome back to another Friday Five 2.0. This week we’re talking races — favorite races, memorable races, holiday races — whatever kind of races you’d like.
As I was perusing my 2016 race calendar it became quite clear to me that 2016 was not the year of the races for me. I only raced eight times! I ran a lot of miles, no doubt — at the time of this writing I’ve run 1,273.4 miles in 2016 and there’s still a week left. That’s nothing to scoff at. But the racing just didn’t quite happen for me. And I am 100% okay with that. 🙂
Obviously not every race can make this list, but I do remember something special from all of them. Without further ado, these are my top five races of 2016.
Top 5 Favorite Races of 2016
1. Marine Corps Marathon
The Marine Corps Marathon was, without a doubt, my absolute favorite race in 2016. The only thing I didn’t love about it was when my IT band flared up at the half. But other than that, this race was amazing. The city, the spectators, the ENERGY. It was so incredible that Julie and I are making plans to return in 2017. I seriously can’t wait.
2. Northern Ohio Half Marathon
Next up on my list of favorite races of 2016 was the Northern Ohio Half Marathon. I have a strange love for this race. It’s so chill and laid back. The atmosphere is great and I love seeing friends at this race, and making new ones. I had a tough time with my back/shoulder aching during this race but overall it was amazing. This is another repeat race I can’t wait for in 2017.
3. Rock Hall Half Marathon
The Rock Hall Half Marathon is hands down one of the best races in Cleveland. The 2017 date was just announced — August 20, 2017 — so if you’re in CLE and want to run a great course and mingle with some awesome people, this is the race for you. And if you’re not in CLE, come check it out and see what our great city has to offer!
4. Hoosier Half
Despite being completely chilled to the bone due to 30˚F temperatures and 28 mph wind gusts, the Hoosier Half was spectacular. There was plenty of sunshine, I got to run the streets of B-town (Hoo-Hoo-Hoo-HOOOOOOSIERS!!!!), and I ran with my friend I hadn’t seen in a long time. I’m hoping to make this race happen again in 2017 because it was amazing — hills, weather, and all!
5. Kiss Me I’m Irish 10K
I ran the Kiss Me I’m Irish 10K in March 2016 and it’s one of my favorite races because, are you ready for this…? It was my first 10K race. Ever. And I got to coach several of my runners through it, which was amazing. I loved cheering them in at the finish line. I’m looking forward to this race in a few short months — fingers crossed we get lucky with the weather again!
Cleveland Half Marathon
The 2016 Cleveland Marathon/Half Marathon was dubbed the “Most Cleveland Race Ever.” And for good reason. Rain, sleet, snowballs — even thunder snow and waterspouts on Lake Erie! This race will go down in history for a lot of people, including me. I was freakishly cold. I couldn’t get warm for the life of me. And when I finally finished, I couldn’t stand still to wait for my husband. I trudged all the way to his car in the parking garage, promptly stripped off all my clothes, and sat with a towel wrapped around me with the heat blasting (thank you Orange Mud transition wrap!). It was insane. And my friend Sara got frostbite from spectating!
Definitely the most Cleveland race. Ever.
Looking back on my 2016 races, this year was about quality over quantity. I definitely had some great racing moments. No major PRs (though my marathon was technically a PR even if it wasn’t the PR I was gunning for. Oh and the 10K is an automatic PR!) but lots of memorable runs and races. I had a good year of running and I’m thankful for it.
I hope everyone has a wonderful holiday weekend with friends and family. For those of you that celebrate Chanukah, Happy Chanukah! For those that celebrate Christmas, Merry Christmas. And for those of you that celebrate both, like me, Happy Christmukah!
TALK TO ME!
How many races did you run this year?
Do you prefer racing a lot or only a few times?