Ring in 2017 17k – Rock Hill, SC (2017)

I signed up for this race on a whim after a friend told me about another race hosted by the Rock Hill Striders and since it was at the Anne Springs Close Greenway, I figured it would be a great way to kick off the new year. The weather was in the high 30’s and rainy with the rain expected to last most of the day, so I knew it would be a cold morning. I ended up overdressed so I took off my lightweight rain jacket after a couple of miles and didn’t really notice the rain since we were in the middle of the woods for the entire race. The race was pretty low-key with runners congregating under a pavilion (with an awesome fire to huddle around) where volunteers checked us in, gave us our bibs, a race bag and bells! I loved the idea of the bells and they worked much better than when I tried to sew bells onto my hula skirt as part of my Hawaiian Santa outfit a few years ago. The next time I want to make some noise on a run, I’ll be sure to break these out again.

We started out at the Rush Pavilion and headed down to do the full School Loop then back around the Grist Mill back up Muscadine trail and around Lake Haigler for a good 10.5 miles. When I first got to the venue and went to pick up my packet, I talked to one of the greenway workers who told me I was hardcore for running in the rain and cold. Certainly put a smile on my face to start the day!

I loved the trail directional signs around the course. 

During the opening remarks the RD told us that part of our loop would take us past the millstone and while he didn’t know what would happen if we didn’t touch it when we ran past, but why risk it. Makes sense to me.

I love the tunnels on the School Loop!
When I finally made it to the Haigler Lake loop, I was excited to be almost done!
The geese didn’t seem to care that it was a cold and rainy day.
I was one of the last runners to come in, but I really enjoyed this race. It was a tough one to start off the year given the lack of training I did over the holidays, but it was a good kick in the butt to get started on more serious training for my April marathon. Plus, I was able to kick off Ragnar’s annual January 30-day challenge by spending a few hours outside which was really nice.

Spoiler alert: I’ve already broken the streak, but I’m catching up by doing two on some days.

After the race I got some food, warmed up by the fire and talked with the RD about the Rock Hill Striders race series. They’ve got a 50k, half marathon and a 12-hour race all at the greenway, so even if I can’t run any more of their races, I definitely want to get involved where I can.

Official time: 2:18:21

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