Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Riley's Rumble 8k

This past weekend, I met up with a couple friends to run the Riley's Rumble 8k.  This is a local half marathon and this year for the first time, it included an 8k option as well.  Both races are essentially an out and back with an extra loop at the beginning.  The 8k was just the first part of the half marathon course.

The race is known for "the three H's" which are heat, humidity and hills.  It certainly lived up to the reputation!  It actually wasn't too hot that morning but the humidity was 94% according to Garmin.  And the sun definitely came out to visit toward the later half of the race.  But we certainly weren't doing this race for time.  The 8k distance fit into the length we wanted to run this weekend and it seemed like a fun way to try a challenging race without having to go all the way to 13.1 miles.  We weren't worried about the time as there wasn't really a time limit for the 8k.  The half marathon had a 15 minute per mile limit and since the 8k was on the same course, it had the same amount of time.

It was also a relatively small race.  According to the results, there were 416 finishers for the half and 115 for the 8k.  The logistics were easy for this race.  There was race day registration and bib pick up.  If you were already a member of Montgomery County Road Runners, you just used your existing bib and shoe tag so we didn't even have to pick anything up.  Even better, the race was free for members!  For non members, it was only $25 for the half and $15 for the 8k.  The race started at 7am to try to beat the heat and the start/finish was be a local recreation center so there was plenty of parking.  The course never felt congested and actually felt pretty empty after the 8k runners split from the half marathon.

In addition to the low price/free for members, free race photos! (I'm in the pink shirt and grey skirt)

Another plus for the race is that it was a beautiful area with some really pretty scenery which helped to make up for the hills a bit.  The course was on a local road so it was paved.  There were plenty of trees on the sides of the road, so they helped provide shade, though there still seemed to be a lot of sun on the way back.

As for my own experience, it went pretty well.  I didn't have any expectations for pace and I was just trying to use this as a good way for some hill training.  I was able to run up most of the hills though there was one long one near the end where I had to insert extra walk intervals.  I enjoyed the race and the scenery and tried to keep my mind off the humidity and hills :) My official time was 1:05:40 so pretty close to the time from my Garmin below.

Pros: easy logistics, plenty of parking, pretty course, not congested, adequate water stops, low price or free and free photos, watermelon slices available after the race!

Cons:  Not many and none in the control of the race - humidity, hills, and farmhouse smells at some points on the course

All smiles with the finish line in sight, thinking of the watermelon available after the race :)