What’s the best way to end a Monday? How about with a 5K race?
In fact, for an inaugural race I only saw two hiccups and one was because I’m directionally challenged. The other was that the line for burgers got CRAZY long if you finished after the 30 minute mark.
Luckily, I ran a great 5K race, especially considering I haven’t been running high mileage or focusing on speed.
I met up with Oak Park Runners Club friend and we did a two mile warm-up together.
The course was all throughout Montrose Park and, thankfully, the cyclist and other runners stayed out of our way. I guess when you see 600 people running with numbers on their shirts you get the picture rather quickly.
There was some dodging of slower runners and adults running with their kids at the beginning of the race but I was always able to get around and never felt too boxed in. Especially for a race on the lakefront and park paths!
I believe this was also my first 5K at Montrose Harbor. I’ve run the Lakefront 10 Miler and the PAWS 8K there but never a 5K. I enjoyed that the course wound through the park and along the lake. Very scenic!
Originally my plan was to run 9:00 minute miles but I wasn’t looking at my Garmin to see if I was on track. I was just running by feel. When I passed my friend who stopped to tie her shoes she informed me I was killing my pace.
“I’ll probably regret this later,” I said, “but my legs are on autopilot.”
I crossed the finish line in an official time of 25:43! Then I promptly downed a cup of water and a cup of Gatorade.
The party continued into the night with a DJ and I’m assuming more beer. But when Maribeth offered me a ride home I took it. Getting to the West Loop from Montrose isn’t exactly the easiest or quickest route. Public transit for an hour or catch a ride with a friend? I know which one I pick.
Overall this was a great way to spend Monday night. The $45 entry fee may seem steep but for this price we got a (gender specific) tech shirt, a pint glass, a burger (beef, chicken or veggie) and a beer. Plus a nice race with a fun atmosphere. Definitely recommended!