Sunday, August 28, 2016

I Love Forest Park 5K

This morning I ran the I Love Forest Park 5k with two of my co-workers. I run with one of the co-workers every Saturday at Tower Grove Park and the other co-worker is studying to become a certified yoga instructor and she is also a retired skater from the St. Louis Women's Flat Track Roller Derby.  My step-dad was also in town to get his outfit for our destination wedding in March, so he decided to run too.

We arrived around 6:30 a.m. because I wanted to be able to park in the lot closest to the visitor's center and the start/finish line.  This gave us plenty of time to use the restrooms and participate in the pre-race yoga session.  Pre-race announcements mentioned that there were over 700 runners this year and that today's race is the only race where the proceeds benefit Forest Park.

At 7:30 a.m. we were off and running.  We decided to run easy 3:1 intervals which allowed me some time to take photos along the way.  If you haven't ever been to Forest Park, it is definitely worth a visit.

Our time was not anywhere near a PR, but it was a fun journey.  Post race food included water, wheat rolls, bananas, and coffee.  Lululemon was also on hand for a pop up sale with 40% of their proceeds being donated to Forest Park.

We left the park right around the time that the kids race was getting ready to start.  I wanted to take my mom and stepdad to a restaurant they had never tried, so I took them to Kingside Diner in the Central West End.  This restaurant is located across the street from the World Chess Hall of Fame and adjacent to the Chess Club and it was a very short drive from the start/finish line of the race.

Great for people watching
Multiple tv's for the sports fans
Breakfast burrito

Quinoa Pancakes
Even though I felt absolutely disgusting after the race, there were plenty of other runners at this restaurant so I never felt under-dressed or out of place.  Keep this place in mind for a great post-race meal.

Have a great week!

Remember to post your race reviews on Bib Rave.

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Diva Dash - St. Louis 5k

I celebrated my birthday yesterday by running (well jogging/walking) a very hot and humid 5K in Forest Park.  I ran the inaugural Diva Dash - St. Louis 5k back in 2014 and I was excited to run it again in 2016.  This year, you had the option of not receiving a t-shirt to save $5, so I decided to go that route this time.  You could also get a $20 refund if four of your runner friends registered via your link.  I tried to get a co-worker to run with me, but it wasn't meant to be so I ran it solo.

There was a packet pick-up option Friday afternoon at Big River Running Company or you could wait until race day.  I opted to get to Forest Park early on race day for packet pick-up.  When I arrived at the Upper Muny Parking Lot around 7:00 a.m. there was plenty of parking and packet pick-up was a breeze.  The weather was miserably hot, humid, and rainy which is most likely the reason why there were less runners this year.

Before I knew it, the race had started.  The atmosphere was very positive, happy, and supportive.  There were many groups of ladies running together, which made me wish I would have organized a group myself.  All ages and abilities were present along with plenty of tutus and tiaras.  The course was different from 2014 but it still gave runners amazing views of Forest Park.  The last 1/4 mile was uphill, but you were greeted with cheers, a medal, and water once you finally reached the finish line.  Bananas and Kashi bars were available to runners as were a print out of your results.  I didn't stay for the Lil' Princess Girls Run this year, but there were plenty of young girls getting ready for their race as ours was finishing.

The third running of the St. Louis Diva Dash was just as great as the inaugural run, and I definitely recommend that you check it out.  If you missed the St. Louis race this year you can still run in Nixa, MO or Tulsa, OK.  Otherwise, check out the website to watch for 2017 dates.