It was our first event yesterday and everything went swimmingly! We held our 5K at Cochran Shoals, part of the Chattahoochee National Recreation Area. It is a marked 5K course, really flat (remarkably so for Atlanta), with great gravel footing. We started at 8 AM and the parking lot was already crowded. Luckily the trail is really wide all the way throughout and it never felt crowded while running.
It was great seeing how many of our friends decided to show up and spend some time outdoors. Some came out to race, others to test themselves or set PRs, and still others came to enjoy the morning and get some exercise. We had about 14 people show up. It was lovely!
My husband and I decided to make things a bit more interesting. We both set what we figured were realistic goals for the course (both having run here numerous times before) and then I got a time handicap. I started with everyone else and my husband waited several minutes to start. The idea was that if we were both accurate with our estimates, then we would meet at the finish line. It was fun to have someone chasing me and my husband enjoyed having someone to chase. Turns out that my time estimate was better than his because he crushed his estimate by almost a minute and passed me with about 0.1 miles to the finish. I think we will probably try this again for the 10K in a month, but it’ll be a bit harder to get a good estimate because of hilly and less familiar courses. My guess is that it’ll be fun regardless!
While we waited for everyone to finish, I was pleasantly reminded about why I originally decided to organize this endeavor. It was really nice to see friends that I hadn’t seen in months except over a Zoom screen. We stood around chatting in a nice big circle with our masks on, just enjoying each others’ company. At that point it didn’t matter how fast we ran, just being with each other was more than worth the effort of organizing. Looking forward to next time!