I hate 10K’s.
I have been pretty clear before, its my least favorite distance on the planet.
So I have to admit, the idea of a 11K was not totally exciting to me. But I do love Race to Remember and I love what they do to support our local veterans so when the opportunity came up to join them I was not going to turn it down.
Race to Remembers mission: (From their website)
The purpose of our “Race to Remember” is to make sure that our communities Never Forget the sacrifice(s) that our brave men and women of the military make to protect our Freedom. We currently organize three races, Race to Remember for Veterans Day, Race to Remember for Memorial Day and United We Stand for 9/11. In addition to racing we organize and participate in other events that honor and support our Veterans like Military care package drives, Honor Flight flag escorts, Honor the Fallen Events, Veteran moving assistance, as well as providing opportunities for our local youth to better understand the true meaning behind the Veteran and Memorial Day Holidays. Our ultimate goal is to build partnerships with other organizations in our communities and throughout the nation to help us honor and support our past and present Veterans. As a long term goal we are also working towards establishing a scholarship for the children and spouses of fallen veterans.
Part of this is their two major races along with a few smaller community runs through out the year including the Veterans Day Run.
The event was the kick off to the annual Veterans Day Parade at Fort Vancouver. It featured an early half-marathon and a 11K and 5K that started closer to the kickoff.
All three courses took you through the best parts of Vancouver, Washington going down through the historical Fort and down on the Columbia River (other then the climb exiting the Fort which zero people really enjoy especially in the rain as it gets slick and the combination of slick and climb. Yeah not really). Its scenic and shows off some of the best parts of the Pacific NW.
Now something to be aware of. This race is super small, super well supported and improves every year. (Its actually quickly becoming one of my highlights of the year.) But that being said, there had been some little glitches but its stuff every race faces (Note to self: Bring safety pins for bib next year). But one thing I love about Claudia as a race director is she wants to know how to get better and does every year.
I went out too fast at the start and I knew it later, but I was feeling strong. My first three miles had been well above my averages but it was raining and I was cold and I wanted to get going.
And I paid for it right at about mile 3.5 I was just dead and slowed down. The turn around could not come soon enough. Despite the rain they had a great group running the water stations and just enough to make the distance berable without having to bring my own.
I picked it back up in the last mile and a half and pull an 11:45 mile off for that race which is great for me and faster then the 10K from a few weeks ago.
The post race was small but had everything you needed to replenish and get your energy back (including beer).
Race to Remember is defiantly a smaller race that has the potential to continue to grow and get better every year. I am excited to see where the next few years take them and I will be supporting their next steps.
Note: I receive a free entry to the race in trade for some extra social media love. These opnions are that of my own (I would be running it anyhow).