Monday, April 16, 2018

Sleet, Rain, Snow OH MY!

Disclaimer:  I received a race entry to the Allstate Hot Chocolate 15K as part of being a BibRave Pro.  Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave 
to review, find and write race reviews.

photo credit @beardontherun

Well,  if there ever was a race that Mother Nature had her way with, it was for sure the Allstate Hot Chocolate 15K in Minneapolis this past Saturday.   Weather reports were confident that the metro area was going to face serious weather concerns in the form of freezing rain, sleet and inches of snow.  Even as I write this post on Sunday evening,  it's still snowing in the Minneapolis Metro area.  Storm totals will reach 18 inches or more before it's all complete! 

I knew early on that my one-hour drive in to the starting line was in jeopardy; safety was my first concern.  It was also on the race directors minds as well because the day before the race, they alerted all runners that the 15K would be shortened to a 5K.  Runner safety was at the forefront of their minds,  and I cannot imagine the difficult decision they had.  But, indeed, it absolutely WAS the right decision!  I appreciate the timely notification of the race change and the communication from the team of people organizing this race!

Thankfully, a friend of mine who works near the expo, was able to pick up my race packet and I received this amazing 3/4 zip fleece-lined shirt.  With thumbholes and comfy material, this will be a favorite in my running wardrobe!  I had to snap a pic before the winter wonderland took hold.  Although you cannot see it in this photo, rain was coming down pretty hard at the time.  

Because I had trained for the 15K, on race morning, I was going to get those miles in no matter what.  Luckily, I own a treadmill and with lots of Netflix to catch up on, I completed my 15K right at home.  Safe and sound!  I was determined to make it happen! 

This was early after 2 inches of freezing rain and sleet!

Even though I absolutely wanted to race that day, I'm happy that I could race in spirit!  But, if you want to see a truly amazing finish line photo, here's my friend Casey!  He decided to make the journey to the race to complete the 5K and he did it in style!  Way to GO Casey! If you want to check out his blog, follow along here.  I'm sure he is going to be posting his race experience soon! 

On another note, isn't it cool that the race provides FREE race photos!  What a great perk!  Hopefully in 2019, Mother Nature will cooperate and I'll be able to toe the starting line!  Until then, Happy Running!!

Even though I won't have an official Athlinks finishing time, when YOU race, make sure to head over to to claim your race results for your upcoming races. Don't forget you can also review any and all of your races on too! If you're wondering, my Athlinks profile stores results from all my past races, and I can even find friends who might be running future races that I want to do. Check out results on Athlinks and follow me so we can be friends (or maybe even rivals!)

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Don't Miss Out on This Race!

Disclaimer:  I received a race entry to Festival Foods Grandad Half Marathon as part of being a BibRave Pro.  Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave 
to review, find and write race reviews.

The Festival Foods Grandad Half Marathon is just three weeks away.  It's my first half marathon of 2018 and my 12th overall.  This race holds a special place in my heart because it's run in La Crosse, WI; my hometown.   I know the course well, and it's nostalgic for me to run by some of the most beautiful parts of my town.

If you are looking for a very well run race, with a great post-race celebration and net downhill course, this is your race.  But,  just in case you need a bit more convincing, here's some fun facts about the race!

The race starts at the top!  The first two miles are straight downhill.  You are sure to have your fastest miles at the start.  Don't worry, your quads won't be too burnt out by the time you're done.  You will have gorgeous views of the entire city and if you look into the distance you'll see the iconic Missisippi River Bridge.  That bridge is your finish line! 

Riverside Park is where your race ends.  It doesn't get much more beautiful than running up the Mississippi River to your finish line.  Plus, the post race food does NOT disappoint.  In true Wisconsin fashion, you'll have beer from the local Pearl Street Brewery and a brat!  YUM.    There is plenty of wide open space to stretch and rest after your race and fun bounce houses for the kids too; make sure to bring your family with you!

Along the course, you'll also have plenty to look forward to.  The water stops are plentiful and are all themed.  You can vote for your favorites at the end of the race.  My absolute favorite is the Green Island Ice Arena water stop at Mile 11.  Just when you don't think you can run anymore, they are ready with a gigantic pile of freshly made snow.  Feel free to throw a snowball or just jump right in like I did! 

If you like race bling, and who doesn't, you'll be impressed with this race!  Each year, they incorporate the iconic blue bridge.  It bridges the gap between Wisconsin and Minnesota and has really made La Crosse famous!  It's nice to know that we're not just famous for the worlds biggest SIX PACK.  Although, the six-pack is a sight to see, so if you want a short walk from the race finish, be sure to check it out.  

Here are the medals that I have from this race!

And... just because I think it's a great talking point; here's the World's Largest Six-Pack!

So, HURRY!!  You have three weeks to register.  I can't WAIT to see you there! Make sure to use code "BIBRAVE18" for 10% OFF your registration!