Last week, I started a new family tradition on Thanksgiving morning with my two cousins and decided to take on the 5K Trinity Turkey Trot in Princeton, New Jersey. This was an awesome bonding experience since it was the first race my cousins ever signed up for. Luckily, we had a clear sunny day to work with, however, it was very cold that morning. We geared up for the weather in leggings, long sleeves and extra layers. Personally, I do not prefer running in the cold I would much rather run in the heat since my muscles get tense when the temperatures drop. After picking up our race numbers and tee shirts we positioned ourselves at the start line. Since I ran the New York City Marathon almost three week weeks prior, I felt ready for a much faster and shorter race.
As the horn went off, we started down a large decline which gave us speed and momentum to start the race. Once the path leveled out, we began winding around a large loop where I gained more speed. Staying in a pack of three other runners, we came out of the circle and started going up a steep incline towards the middle of the race. At this point, my legs felt numb and I really had to mentally power myself through the hill and cold weather. In hindsight, I wish I saved more of my energy for this portion of the race. Once we finished running up the hill, the trail declined again giving me the extra push needed to complete the race strong.
Once I saw the three-mile marker, I began to pick up my speed and really give it all I had left. I finished the race in 21 minutes and 10 seconds (which wasn’t a personal PR) however, was still happy with my 6 minute and 48 second mile average in the cold conditions. We plan on signing up again next year and will definitely plan on wearing warmer pants! Both of my cousins completed the race and felt so proud of them while watching them cross the finish line. I’m excited they were interested in running and look forward to doing more races with them in the future. Also, I would highly recommend signing up for a Thanksgiving race to all runners – I swear the turkey felt more deserved than ever this year!