Last Tuesday, I ran the Peachtree Road Race (PRR) for the second consecutive year. This race holds a special place in the city of Atlanta as the world’s largest 10K. Rachel decided not to run this year, but I was joined by my good friend Meredith.
On the Sunday before the race, Rachel and I headed down to the expo at the Georgia World Congress Center. We ended up getting down there about an hour after the expo opened and it was quite busy. We were able to grab my race number quickly though. We made our way through the different vendors, stopping to check out a few things. After maybe an hour or so, we headed back to Marta and home.
Later that evening, we met up with our friends The Popes for dinner and dessert. We ended up trying out this Italian place by Northlake Mall in Atlanta. It was excellent. After dinner, we made our way over to this Thai ice cream place on Buford Hwy. called 8 Fahrenheit Ice Cream. I’ve been wanting to try this place for a while now. They do rolled ice cream and I had heard nothing but awesome things about it. And friends, it did not disappoint! The line was out the door, which I knew was a good sign. Two thumbs up from all of us, including Katie and Kevin’s daughter Kaylee!
Rachel and I ended up having to work a little on Monday (July 3rd), but we both got off a little early and caught a movie (Baby Driver) that afternoon. After the movie, we hung around the house and I rested up for the early morning wake up call.
One big advantage for me was that I had submitted a solid race time, which allowed me to get into Corral C. This was huge, as I was able to start and finish earlier than most of the other corrals. Fortunately, my friend Meredith was also in corral C, which allowed us to start together.
That morning, I made my way over to Brookhaven Marta Station to head down to the race start (which is technically only 1 stop down from Brookhaven). That’s when the fun started. Something was wrong with the southbound train and the trains were temporarily down. After waiting for a good 15-20 minutes, I decided to walk down to the race start. Fortunately, the race start was “only” about a 1.5 mile walk. But I definitely was not expecting to have to walk that far before my race.
Meredith was on her way down from Gwinnett County with her husband Chris. They ended up driving all the way down to the Lenox area (the race start), and Chris dropped Meredith off to walk to the corrals. Fortunately, we were able to connect (even with all of the runners) literally right before corral C started walking towards the starting line.
Now, my back and left knee have been giving me some issues recently, plus with the higher temps, I wasn’t sure what kind of race to expect. I decided to let Meredith dictate our pace, as long as I could keep up with her. Meredith is also running the Dopey Challenge in January, so we used this opportunity to see how we fare running together. We were both hoping to run a lot of the 4 races during Dopey together, but having never run together, it’s important to know how we would do.
The PRR route is mostly on Peachtree Street. The first 3+ miles are mostly level with a few up and downs, but nothing major. We ended up keeping a solid 9:30ish pace for the first 3 miles. One of the nice things about running with a friend you don’t see all the time is you end up having quite a bit to talk about. We were able to maintain a solid conversation for most of the race.
Once we got past mile 3, we got to the second half of the 10K and several major hills. Honestly, by the time we were at the halfway point, I was already sweating quite a bit. The humidity and heat were strong.
Meredith and I knew we would have to slow our pace down a little in order to finish strong. We ended up walking a couple of times just to catch our breath, especially after the hills. As we got a little past mile 5, Rachel texted me that she and Chris were waiting for us a little ways ahead. We were able to see them on 12th Street, with less than a mile to go.
As we made the turn onto 10th Street and into the final stretch, we both increased our pace and crossed the finish line in just under 1:03. I have to say, I was quite pleased with our time, especially with the weather conditions. It was a hot one!
After we finished, I ran into my friend Jerry Carnes, who works for 11 Alive News. It’s always good to see him.
From there we entered into Piedmont Park to pick up the infamous PPR finisher shirt and, of course, water!
We found Chris and Rachel and snapped a few pictures before making our way to Chris and Meredith’s car. One of the best parts of this year’s PRR was not having to walk back to Marta, but instead getting a ride back to our cars at the Brookhaven Marta Station.
All in all, it was another successful Peachtree Road Race! There’s nothing quite like running with 60K people down Peachtree Street. Plus, it was wonderful to run with my friend Meredith. I think we both agreed it was good warm up for Dopey. Until next year…