Sunday, April 19, 2015

Hot Chocolate 15K - Minneapolis, MN April 18, 2015

I Finished!  15K  1:23:27

For my first race of the 2015 season, it couldn't have been a better day in Minneapolis!  The sun was shining; 57 degrees at the start.  It was a tad bit windy, but actually after I was running, I welcomed the wind to cool me off!  A good friend of mine and my partner-in-crime for my early morning 5 AM runs was my race partner for the day.  We usually run the same pace and races are much more fun when you have a friend by your side. 

Overall, I think the race was very well organized.  It operated smoothly and everyone was able to indulge in the chocolate goodies at the end.  I've heard of many races where the finisher perks were unavailable at the end of the race.  At first, I found it odd that the 5K races started at 8:00 and the 15K started at 8:50.  However...the only downside to that was that we needed to park a tad bit farther away from the race.  The 5K pool of runners was much larger than the 15K runners.  The advantage that we had as racers starting later was: no lines at the port potties, optimum picture opportunities, easy gear check and all together less people.  This filtered through at the end of the race too.  I'm not one for huge crowds and it was very nice to have many of the 5K finishes already on their way home when we crossed the finish line.  

Here's a pick of my friend and partner-in-crime Heather and I at the finish!  Did I mention the medals are AWESOME!!!  These medals were a new addition this year for the 15K finishers.  Being that I'm a "bling-whore" I absolutely LOVE IT!!  In case you can't see all it's beauty on the above picture, here it is!!!

Another great addition to my race day was this amazing sign that my Instagram friend Amanda and her daughter made for me!  I saw her at mile 8 - just when I needed that little extra boost of energy to get me to the end.  I've never had a sign made for me so this was extra special! It is going to hang on the wall next to my treadmill. It makes a nice memory for me!

Below is Amanda and I after the finish. Believe it or not... we had never met until yesterday.  We became friends and motivators for each other on Instagram.  She came down to the race just to see me and to meet me.  I felt like a million bucks!  Here's to hoping I can support her in a few short weeks at her marathon debut!  This just shows you how amazing the running community is.  Support can come from anyone and I am so thankful for the support I receive from my Instagram and Facebook Community.

This race is a MUST-DO for anyone in the Minneapolis area. It will for sure be added to the list of my favorites.

My only disappointment on the day was that I ran 9.48 miles.  I need lessons on how to cut the course so that I am as close to the mileage as possible.  My Garmin clocked me at the same finish time, but with my mileage it was 8:48 / mile.  Hot Chocolate Ram Racing has me at 8:58/mile.  I realize that to most people this is peanuts of a difference.  I attribute some of the extra mileage to dodging runners at the start of the race - it was crowded the first 1 1/2 miles.  I feel like I could have been placed one corral up as well and that would have made a slight difference.

This race inspired the start of my season. I cannot WAIT for the next one.  In two weeks I will be completing my 2nd half-marathon in La Crosse Wisconsin.


  1. Congrats on a great race!!!


  2. Great job! Sounds like fun!

    I ran a Hot Chocolate race here in Chicago a few years ago--it was not a good experience. The 5k runners and walkers lined up with the 15k runners and it was a disaster. There was no chocolate left at the finish for the 15k runners. I assume that they've ironed all that out by now. Glad it was a good experience for you!

    1. Wendy.... I'm glad that it worked out well. I bet that at the Chicago race they got a lot of complaints. At first I was worried that because there were so many 5K starters there would be nothing left, but they had plenty. The corral assignments were very nice too! The 5K corrals took about 30 minutes to get through, which I think made for very smooth transitions!
      Definitely I would try it again when it's in your area!

  3. Great race and how amazing that she came down to cheer you on and support you, the running community is so fabulous.

  4. Thanks abby! It was so cool to meet her. I hopefully am going to meet many more runner friends in the future!

  5. Congrats on a great race! I love the 15K distance. You have a great speedy pace!
    That's is so awesome you made a new running friend :)

  6. Thanks!! 2nd half is coming up Next Saturday!