Tröegs Hop Dash 2016: Race Recap
“Your father was beat by a dinosaur.”
Despite that, the Tröegs Hop Dash 5K was so much fun this year. My parents made the drive up from Wilkes-Barre on Saturday and joined Tim and me — along with dozens of friends — on the course. With a light rain and temperatures in the mid-60s, it was really perfect running weather, and nearly 1,000 people gathered in front of the Capitol to participate in the race.
However, the 1 p.m. start time always throws me off. I am usually long done running by then and have gotten in a few meals and a nap. The course changed slightly from last year, and while I thought it would be boring running around the Capitol complex 1.5 times before heading over the State Street Bridge, it really wasn’t.
I hit the first mile in 6:29, followed by the second mile in 6:30. I felt pretty strong, and I kept reminding myself to just hold onto it, which is something I tell my spinning class weekly when we’re doing sprints. There were a lot of turns on this course, and I hit the 5K mark in 20:05, but was sadly still pretty far from the finish line. I think I need to work on running tangents better.
I crossed the finish line in 21:09, which I couldn’t help but feel disappointed in. It was 5 seconds slower than last year’s time, and according to my Garmin, I somehow ran an extra .17 miles. But I managed to score third place female, and I was able to go back and run the last stretch with my mom, who won her age group (and was pretty pumped about it!).
My dad, unfortunately, did lose to a man in a dinosaur costume, but he’s coming back from surgery, so I was really proud of him for getting out there. It was also really fun to see so many friends along the course and to celebrate with after. I was really thrilled to have my family there with me as well. I am forever grateful to my parents for instilling a love of exercise in me at a young age.
Each runner got two beers, and the lines moved smoothly. There also were some food trucks, and luckily, the rain let up for the after-party. It was a really fun event, and I look forward to next year — hopefully, I can get better at running in a straight line.