This year’s Peachtree Road Race in Atlanta, Georgia had the potential to be different from recent years. In light of the Boston Marathon bombing there would be a greater police presence for this race (the largest 10K in the United States). Mother Nature was also expected to change the race as the forecast called for a 100% chance of rain. How did it all turn out?
There was rain for the wheelchair race and for the 7:30 elite starters, but by the time the rest of us queued up, the rain had stopped and we were treated with overcast skies for the entirety of the race and temperatures in the low 70s. As for the police presence? I wouldn’t have known they were there had it not been for the news coverage I saw afterwards.
Pre-race was the same as it’s ever been, people lining up at the Marta stations, folks in costumes and beer. I’ve never understood how these folks can do it but the beer drinkers will not be stopped. Holy water was also sprinkled by a catholic priest right before he ascent to cardiac hill (I get it every year), the street apostles warned us that the end was near and there were some folks politicking against using tax money for a new stadium. All par for the course.
Live music along the course was more sparse than usual, I’m assuming because wet conditions were expected, however the radio stations were in full force. All runners and walkers were treated to cheering spectators along the course, though fewer in number this year.
Anybody who participates in races, knows what the finish looks like. A full on SPRINT. Folks who may have walked the entire course turn into Usain Bolt at the end. I never stop chuckling at this. Once in Piedmont Park, we all trudged through the mud to get our t-shirts, drinks and snacks. On my way out I stopped at the medical tent, for good measure this year as I experienced no problems (except for a hip thing which is a nagging injury), there was only one person in the tent while I was there and my blood sugar and pressure were A-OK. New reports indicated that one person suffered cardiac arrest I hope they’re ok.
As is custom I usually stop some random person to take my picture, to show the aftermath. This year that random person was Loren, who was really nice. She had run multiple Peachtrees and shared with me that she’d lost over 70 pounds running. GO LOREN! Thanks for humoring me but mostly for sharing your victory with me.
Overall this year’s Peachtree was enjoyable, relaxing almost. Not having to worry about the effects of heat and humidity were a relief for this runner and I would imagine the same for many more. As I’ve said the last few years, this is my LAST one. Let’s see if I stick to that when registration begins in March 2014 and sign up for #15.
Until next time see you on the trail (or the road).