I will be the first one to admit, I am not a runner. My feeble attempt at running is a slow jog [yes, extremely slow] usually mixed in with more walking than running. Maybe one day I will be able to run a mile without walking. I have done it before, I’ve even run a 5K without walking twice! However, this was a few years back.
So, why then, you ask, would I ever want to enter the Cooper River Bridge Run? This being the 4th year in a row that I have completed the race, I will outline in 8 points my reasons behind entering the Bridge Run, even though I am not a true runner.
1. Couple Time: My husband loves to run and this is one of his favorite races in Charleston. Although we do not traverse the course together, it still gives us a chance to do something together that is out of our normal routine. Even though hubs starts the race up front as a seeded runner and I am in the back with the slow folks, we still get to spend time together on race day. We have an early morning rise together (usually around 4 a.m.), a boat ride across the Cooper River and the post-race dragging of me back to the car while attempting to eat as many bananas and muffins we can get our hands on.
2. The Expo [Free Stuff!]: The Bridge Run Expo is a great way to sample some new drinks and snacks as well as get some fun freebies! This year we received full sized bottles of the [New?!?] Gatorade Frost Glacier Cherry. I had never heard of this flavor, and it is surprisingly good! We got to try some natural and fresh squeezed orange juice and strawberry lime juice. Can’t forget the Muscle Milk samples along with free full size bottles! Also, Aquafina has a new sparkling water called flavorsplash sparking water and we opted to both bring home bottles of the orange citrus flavor. I’m not sure how good it will be, but I’m excited to try it. Another new item we snagged were two boxes each of 4C cap.it Green Tea, close to a $16 value for all of the boxes we snagged. Can’t beat that! Will probably try those out this week. We got many other items as well, but the one I am looking most forward to trying is my small 1.15 oz sample of Peanut Butter & Co Dark Chocolate Dreams. It’s a good thing they were almost out of samples, or I may have snagged a lot more. All in all, a great place to spend some time sampling and snagging some great new products to try later.
3. New Workout Gear: I don’t always get new workout gear for the race, however, it is fun to use it as an excuse to get some new workout clothes to wear for the Bridge Run. No new gear this year, but, I think next year I will have to change that up! At some point, I will need another pair of running shorts/pants/capris with a pocket large enough for my ID and cell, because the current ones have been in enough races.
4. Outstanding View: If ever there were a great way to experience the true beauty of the Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge, it is during the Bridge Run. Yes, you can use the sidewalk on the bridge at all times to get the view, but in the Bridge Run, it places you right in the middle of the bridge, the best angle for the best view!
5. Costumes: There are always lots of fun and entertaining costumes along the race to enjoy. It helps take your mind off of the fact that your legs and feet hurt, and the fact that you are running up the only hill in Charleston before 9:00 a.m. on a Saturday! My favorite from years past happened to be a group that were all donned as The Flintstones, running car and all! This year there were minions, KISS, Jamaican bobsledders, and my favorite a guy in a boat (yes, he had “boat” made out of pipes and panels) with speakers pulling his wife in a tube float, dangling legs and all! (Okay, maybe you had to be there…) Honorable mention, a guy riding a unicorn! There are too many to mention, but all the costumes help distract from the pain and distance of this race and make it enjoyable. **
**Photos of costumes and hubs below were snagged from the ABC News 4 Charleston slideshow from yesterday.
6. Entertainment: Every year there are bands staged along the sides of the race. Mostly local bands, it is a great alternative to using headphones along the race and tuning out everything that is going on around you.
7. Finish Festival: Get your muffins, bagels, fruit and water! It sounds ridiculous, but a tasty bran muffin beyond delicious after 6.2 miles. This year, they were also handing out small containers of watermelon, which was a fun surprise. There are bands, of which this year featured Edwin McCain! That was pretty awesome to hear “I’ll Be” live while walking around in the crowds at Marion Square. The Johnsonville Big Taste Grill has been there the past few years serving up thousands of delicious brats to the hungry finishers as well. Pretty tasty towards the end of the finish festival to enjoy a brat for lunch.
8. Nap Time: After the race (and shower time) my hubby and I also have our ritualistic after race nap together, some of the best few hours of the day!
So, there you have it, my 8 reasons I take on the Cooper River Bridge Run every year. And yesterday was no different. Almost 4 years in Charleston and I just completed my 4th Bridge Run.
Although, I will say, yesterday’s was more eventful for me than in all three past years combined. (Continue reading only if you care to hear about my adventure of a morning, before the race every started!)
Having arrived at the parking garage for the boat shuttle at 5:15 a.m., we realize that we had remembered to bring everything except my running shoes. So, in a state of panic I drop the hubs off to take the 1st boat shuttle of the morning so that he could make his coral (his coral began promptly at 8 a.m., mine a little later) and then make my way back home to grab my shoes and get back downtown in time to take another boat shuttle for the race. All of this would have been much easier, and quicker, had we of driven my car and had my keys. As I could have driven to my office (merely 5 minutes away) to pick up a different pair of shoes I have, and then return to the parking garage probably 15 minutes later. Instead, it took about 45 minutes to drive home, swap everything from the truck to the car (I’m not attempting to park the truck downtown!) and get back in time for one of the last boat shuttles. With the delay of getting my shoes and waiting in line for about 35 minutes to use a portable potty, I ended up starting one coral back from where I was registered, but all in all, it could have been much worse and I could have been so late that I had to start with the strollers back in coral K or I! Goodness, Clay would of had to wait for me for an additional 45 minutes if that were the case!
GET OVER IT!
COOPER RIVER BRIDGE RUN 2014