Saturday, November 10, 2012

Michelle Takes on The Loop

Boathouse Row
The Schuylkill River Loop is a great area for runners, joggers, walkers, and cyclists in Philadelphia. The full loop covers 8.5 miles of prime Philadelphia scenery as it winds past the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Boathouse Row, Falls Bridge, Strawberry Mansion Bridge, the Fairmount Park sculptures, and of course the Schuylkill River. It's a beautiful route, and it is a great runner's getaway for a virtually uninterrupted run in a big city where traffic would normally be a problem. Today, I took on the 40th Annual Schuylkill River Loop Race.

Philly Fall
I was a bit out of my league, and I definitely got my butt kicked, but it was a good butt kicking. This race is for serious runners. As runners mingled before the start, they talked of their excitement for the upcoming Philadelphia Marathon. The crowd was small, and the runners were fast. The course record is 40:08. This was a group of serious runners. I am not going to lie, there are times that I feel judged by the running community, and this was one of those times. I put myself at the very end of the starting lineup.
Elmo and Cookie Monster

I started out pretty strong, took in all the sights, even the unexpected ones, and I held my head high. I focused in on a man in front of me, and I didn't let up on my pace until I reached him. I told him that he really gave me a run for my money. He was one of those runners I always enjoy meeting. I love runners who are kind and encouraging. It is great to come together as runners to encourage and push each other. We paced each other for quite some time, and then I hit the point of technical difficulties.

Dr. Bob was a great impromptu partner!
The race website noted that water and Gatorade on the course, but it turned out that there was one water station. I should have worn my hydration belt, but I was misled by the website. I was also misled by the weather man who said, "Sunny skies and warm temperatures!" It started raining during the race. The last technical difficulty was the biggest blow to my race today. I have read and heard about running being a natural laxative, which is why I always take some Imodium before a long run or race. It may not be the best for my body, but I definitely prefer it to the discomfort I had today. It slowed me down, but in the end, it turns out that I finished with roughly an 11 minute mile pace, which isn't too bad when it's all said and done.


  1. That looks beautiful! I want to run it! Aahhh!

    1. It definitely is! I wish I had someone to run with here because I'd drive into the city to do it more often!

  2. I love that you wore that shirt to race.

    1. I was just telling Matt that it is my favorite shirt acquired from a race!