Race #2 of my party with the legs weekend was the Baltimore Women’s Classic 5K (and if you missed it, Race #1 was the Big Elk trail half, click here for recap). I received a postcard in one of my local race packets some time ago about the BWC and put it in my back pocket. I don’t generally race long (yesterday’s half notwithstanding!) in the summer so always on the lookout for a nice local 5K or 10K. I started hearing more and more about it and when I found out this was the first year they were offering medals – well, I jumped at the registration!!
Beyond the bling I wholeheartedly support what the BWC is all about. It is a premiere women’s only race (one of the oldest in the country) and they promote women’s health and fitness (umm, hello?!). They have a pretty storied history going back to the 70’s which you can read about here. They provide direct services to women battling gynecological cancers and support many partner organizations related to cancer awareness, screening, research and medicine through charitable donations. This is a cause that is particularly near and dear to my heart.
So, the race: Race day started out quite different than yesterday. It was cool and overcast, perfect for a nice run. After a couple of snafus getting into Baltimore (first, I tried to park at the discounted lot at Camden Yards and it was cash only and I was fresh out and second, I parked in a garage, got all the way to the elevator and realized I wasn’t wearing my bib – sigh…) it was on to the start line!! I got there moments before the race began and missed meeting up with my friend to start so made my way towards the 8 – 9 minute pacing groups. I wasn’t looking to PR in this race and I was definitely feeling the trails from the day before but a sub-30 5K was on my goal list!
We started off at Rash Field, cruising through the streets around the Inner Harbor. It was relatively flat to start with a gentle incline (ahem) after about a half mile . There were 2 aid stations on the course a little after miles 1 and 2 with water and Gatorade. I held a pretty steady pace and felt good though did have some tightness in my calves (darn trails!) We completed the last 3/4 mile on the Inner Harbor promenade – gorgeous view of the water and great crowd cheers!! I crossed the finish line at a time of 28:09 and my net/chip time was 27:13 (pace 8:47) – a result that was emailed to me a couple hours later (seriously BWC, nice. touch.) After I crossed I was handed a bottle of water and a wet towel which they had chilling in kiddie pools of nice coooooool water. LOVED IT!!Following the towel, I was handed a rose by a lovely male 😉 volunteer and adorned with a sparkly Baltimore Women’s Classic medal. These organizers sure did know how to treat a lady!Following the finish I met up with my friend by the stage. Because of this I didn’t check out much of the Festival Village so cruised through. One of the big bonuses they offer is watermelon slices (confession: I do not like watermelon, sorry!! carry on). Generally I don’t stay for too long after a race but this particular after party really kept me engaged. My friend and I had an opportunity to catch up and take some pictures and then the announcements and prize awards were given. But, oh wait! Special treat: a dance celebration by Movez, which I had never heard of before but it is located in Baltimore and they offer dance/fitness classes. Led by Adelicia and participants from the run – these gals ROCKED it! So much so that my friend and I participated with the other dancers on the floor of the stage (not pictured) making up moves as we went along. AND… I’ve already looked up the dance studio and we WILL be taking a class. Yes, it’s that serious 🙂 And after this they gathered all the mom and daughter teams who ran to take a group picture. The celebration of women and camaraderie was simply incredible and it’s what I appreciated the most by this RACE and this EVENT. So all in all a wonderful celebration to cap off an excellent racing weekend. Following the presentations and awards (my friend and I didn’t win any of the random prizes, hmph) we took off to Johnny Rockets for a French Toast and bacon filled breakfast. The rains held off until the drive home naturally, but such a great day. I will be back BWC, medal or not, I will be back 🙂
Please consider DONATING to this wonderful cause!!