Thursday, January 30, 2014

Securian Winter Run – 5K - 2014

(This is a back-dated blog-post. Life happens and I never get to write down on time.)

Securian Winter Run 2014 was my very first race. I had only just started running last month and wanted to get some race exposure for excitement. The fact that it was an open outdoor race in January in Minnesota, in the middle of polar vortex, did not discourage me – maybe because I was naïve and also because I had trained outside (flying hifi). Nevertheless, I started small and went with 5K.

It was an instance decision because the date was of significance to me. Inspite of that, the fee was not so high. Securian had a great parking space; covered, spacious and accommodated nearly all runners cars. That was connected to their warm, indoor pre-race space; again huge with all facilities in there. Late packet pickups, bag check and stretching areas were running smoothly. Family warmed me with their hugs to calm my nerve and waited for me here while I ran.

Race started in the downtown outside the Securian center and winded out of the downtown to Shepard Road. 10K and Half Marathoners continued, while we 5Kers could turnaround back to the same place for finish. Towards the end I happened to see the clock and nearly stopped to curse; it was incredibly over my expectations. After a pause, realized it was for the other race and my race clock showed 48 minutes. Phew that was a relief. It’s not a great record but it was my first time racing in my  adult life.

Temperature for the duration of the race was closed to 10F. Remember we were still in the middle of Polar Vortex i.e. we were colder than Antarctica that January. So my running gear was:
1.       Bulky wind proof winter jacket layered over fleece shirt, full-sleeve tech shirt and half-sleeve shirt.
2.       Winter cap & neck gaiter for my face
3.       Now this was my first race in Minnesota winter, so in my anxiety I was trying out new gloves. They did not work. For the initial 15 minutues I was scared I might lose them to frostbite. I kept thinking I should have stuck to my gloves-&-mitten combo from my training run. But after some distance, my fingers warmed up.
4.       Lower limbs were protected by C9 Compression pants and wind-proof track pants.
5.       Reebok shoes with thick soles & compression socks.

Race goodies: There was no medal for the 5K category. But they gave a Headband which has been useful for me for my runs across the chilly part of the year. That and the ceramic mug. This run is part of Saint Paul Winter Carnival. and so there were other promotional goodies. Their waiting area had numerous food offerings.

Race results were published on Chronograph with details and photos. This being my first race results, I am so proud of it and also spoiled for all other races when make any mistake in their results.

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