Word to the wise: When looking for a January road race in New England see if you can find one called the Warm and Balmy Winter 5K in the hopes that a warm spell will grace you at the starting line and the race will live up to its name.
For those brave runners who made their way to Quincy, Massachusetts this morning for the Frozen 5K, we can all attest to the fact that the race certainly lived up to its name. With race time temperatures just shy of zero and wind chills much colder than that it was a challenge, to say the least, to toe the starting line and head out on the course. Thankfully, the race was a 5K and would be over in a short period of time which was just about the only solace you could find when racing in such extreme cold.
Before making it a few hundred yards past the starting line, my fingers were frozen despite two pairs of gloves and the face covering proved to be a unique obstacle to normal breathing. When I took the face mask down half-way into the race, it then froze and breathing without it was even more of a challenge so the icicle covered mask went back on. Today was a day for layers, more layers and a few more layers but no matter how many shirts or pants you had on, it was freezing!
The course was an out and back run complete with some pretty nice climbing mixed into the course throughout. The course was free from snow and ice on the pavement and a coned off lane provided runners a path free from traffic. A huge amount of gratitude goes out to the Quincy Police Department who had the race course covered perfectly and the officers deserve a lot of praise for also braving the elements so us runners could race in such extreme cold.
Proceeds from the Frozen 5K Road Race benefit the YMCA’s Annual Campaign, helping to fund financial assistance to ensure Y membership, programs and services remain accessible to all.
I finished the Frozen 5K with a time of 25:16, good for 8:08/miles. Not a bad result for the tough running conditions! Once I thaw out completely I might start looking for some warm weather races just to begin to erase the chill of this morning’s run from my memory!