Did you know that if you run a certain number of Running Alliance Sport 5K races, you get a special reward? I didn’t until the St. Thomas 5K, so when I heard I could still get my goodies by doing the Boo Dash 5K, I was in. The Boo Dash 5K showed up at a good time in my current training cycle, so I planned to run it as a tempo training run and programmed my Garmin accordingly.
The Boo Dash 5K was held at the Challenger Columbia Stadium, a CCISD property. There was plenty of parking, and the race didn’t start until 8:15 (the Kids’ K started at 8 am), so I didn’t have to get up ridiculously early. Saturday morning was actually cold, so I was a little worried about running in my Texas Beef Team tank top! I got there at 7:30, so I had time to sit in my car, then run a one-mile warm-up (and do some stretches). I wandered around a little to check out the exhibitors (there were a handful, including a local chiropractor and Body Armor), as well as the classic car trunk-or-treat and the haunted tunnel setup. There was trick-or-treating at the exhibitors’ tents for the kiddos after the race.
The Boo Dash 5K: Go Time!
And then it was time to line up! As per usual, it was a little bit of a free-for-all at the start line. But I tried to position myself near the front, off to the side, so I wouldn’t get trampled by the faster folks that might have lined up behind me.
The course itself was fantastic: part of it went through the Challenger 7 Memorial Park, and the rest went near the Emerson Park apartments. Running Alliance Sport had set up a water stop (they’re good about placing water stops and mapping out routes), and there were plenty of volunteers and course markers to keep us on track.
As for me, I really did plan to run this at a short tempo pace, which would be around an 8:15/mile. But I felt really good, so I ignored my watch beeping at me to slow down and just enjoyed it. I chatted with some other runners, and I stayed in a good zone, where I was at a comfortably hard pace. I felt like I was smiling most of the time. I tried not to go too hard, but during that last mile, I dropped the hammer – hard.
I crossed the finish line in 25:07 (25:10 gun time, which is what I posted on my Instagram feed), not a PR but definitely feeling amazing! (And I did this wearing a headband with devil horns and a pin-on devil tail.) I collected my medal, stuffed down a chicken biscuit from Chick fil A, and gulped a water. And then I found out I had won second in my age group, but I had to go, so I’ll have to collect my award later.
Overall, the Boo Dash 5K was a fantastic inaugural race, and I’m glad Running Alliance Sport has added it. I’d be happy to do it again next year, if my schedule permits.