On Saturday, I got up and out the door to head to meet Karen, Ashley, and Alissa for the Runner’s World Half & Festival 10K and expo. I left the house 90 minutes before I’m usually able to get out the door on a weekday for work. Coincidence? I think not.
Even with construction zones, my drive to Bethlehem from Philly was great. The sun was shining, I was car dancing to songs from my favorite Sirius XM stations, and I saw several hot air balloons. Sidenote: I’m obsessed with hot air balloons. I want to get in one, and fully expect no matter where I am, I will land in Oz. If Dorothy can leave Oz in one, I can get there in one.
I was really excited to get there, but seriously nervous. It’s Runner’s World! And some of my favorite bloggers were already there. If you read Run, Eat, Repeat, Hungry Runner Girl, or follow the Run Chat guys, you’ve also seen the super cool stuff a handful of bloggers got to experience. Mine was not that cool, but the festival, nonetheless, was really well done. Next year, I want to stay there, and experience it all.
Using the power of my smile, I was able to park for free not far from the start, finish, and expo. Met up with Karen, and made our way to bib pick-up. The expo facilities were nice but very crowded. It was tough to move, or even put yourself together before heading to the race start.
The positive, was that by telling Alissa and Ashley we were near the bathrooms, we found them quite easily. Squealed, hugged, and took lots of pictures. The families around us, clearly thought we were nuts.
And then we were off. Ashley stuck with Karen and I for the first mile, then we let her fly, and settled into our usual 3:1 rhythm. The course was nice, albeit hilly, but we powered through, and by mile 4, I felt like I’d found my stride.
Around that time I also realized if we finished really strong, I’d have a several minute 10K PR. Karen was on board, so we picked up the pace, skipped our walk intervals, and had a crazy strong finish.
After hydrating and getting some other pics, Karen and I headed to the expo. For a small expo, it was great. We chatted with the Sweaty Bands team, the Running Skirts team, and on our way out, ran into Scott and Dave from Run Chat, and accosted them.
Have you met any Twitter/Blog friends in real life?
What’s been the best swag you’ve gotten at a race expo?
Will the RW Festival make it on your race calendar next year?