It’s turkey time! For me, that means continuing my tradition of running a race on Thanksgiving Day. This year, I decided to try a new race south of Rochester: the CF Turkey Trot. The race started and ended at the Wyoming Hook & Ladder Fire Hall. Proceeds of the race benefited the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.
According to an article in the Arcade Herald, organizer Carrie Bartholomew decided to start the race because her daughter “Natalie, now 14 months old, was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis when she was just one month old.” The race was also held in honor of Alicia Halpenny, a young woman who recently passed away after battling CF. I have a friend who had CF and had a double lung transplant – so I know what this disease can do. Thankfully, my friend is now thriving, but that is not always the case with this illness.
Ok, back to the race. The weather was very cold, and we had snow earlier in the week. It was 20 degrees (BRRR!!) when I got there – not sure what the temp was at race time. On a good weather day, this race was 40 minutes from my house – traveling on back roads. I opted to take half back roads to be safer. It took less than an hour and I got there at 8:30. I went in, got my bib and then just hung around until race time. Fortunately, you could wait inside the fire hall.
The route was mainly flat, a non certified course that came in at a little more than a 5k. I have been really slow with my running, so I knew I would be back of the pack. As always, I was worried about my Raynauds kicking in. This is a concern for any cold weather race. My hands just cramp up, turn white and throb when I get an attack. It’s super painful and makes running very difficult. So, I had my hand warmers and was ready to go – hoping for the best. What I didn’t have was my trusty Garmin watch. After 4 years, it finally died. 😦 I’m hoping to get the new pink Garmin Forerunner 10. I felt a little lost without my watch, but sometimes it’s good to run without one.
At around 10, we were off. This is the first time my feet felt cold, and I’m hoping this is not the beginning of Raynauds in my feet. But, I just ignored it and kept running. It was a little slick on the course, but overall it was fine. It was slushy, slippery and snowy when we ran by the high school (I think it was a high school). I got a piece of ice or rock salt stuck at the bottom of my left shoe for a bit, but eventually it dislodged itself. The route went to railroad tracks and then turned around. Since it was an up and back course, the faster runners were already heading back as you were still plodding along. This can be discouraging, but people gave high fives and were supportive even to us slower runners (and walkers).
I had not run in over a week, and my knee had been acting up, but it did not bother me during the race. I was very slow, but was determined to run the entire course. I dropped a hand warmer at one point, but quickly scooped it back up. There was a water stop around mile 2. I was very happy to see the mile 3 sign, round the corner and finally – the finish line! It was my slowest race ever, but that is ok. I can’t expect more, being this heavy. I do feel my years of running and mileage have allowed me to keep some sort of cardio capacity that enables me to even run this distance, short as it may be, without stopping.
I think they had over 400 runners and walkers sign up. 379 finished the race. After the race, there was food and drink, including apples, cider, chips, cheese sticks, granola/yogurt, brownies, cookies and bananas. It was a very nice spread. It seems like they had a lot of generous donors, ranging from Wegmans and Tops, to local businesses. Soon after, awards were handed out. I loved the turkey on the medallions! Top prize (male and female) was a membership to a local gym.
Oh, I almost forget to mention the goodie bag. In it, you got your shirt (I got a wicking one- they also had cotton shirts if you registered later), a mulling spice sample, various coupons and a piece of maple candy! I also got a “Refuel with chocolate milk” towel (not pictured) from a dairy queen princess. Very cute!
I chose this race because I wanted something more low key than the huge Thanksgiving day races in Buffalo and Rochester that get between 5,000 and 12,000 people. I also like to try new races. In the past, I have run turkey trots in Greece, Hornell and Livonia – ranging from a 5k to a 10k. I’m super slow due to gaining weight, but I was not about to give up on my tradition.
I predict this race will grow even larger in the next few years. This race was a nice alternative to the crowded races. I do hope the organizer keeps it on the smaller side to preserve that hometown feel. I also like the starting time – it gave me time to travel without having to leave at the crack of dawn. The coordinator should be VERY proud of this race – the turnout – atmosphere, etc. I know a lot goes into coordinating something like this. A big thank you to her and all the volunteers!
People do races on Thanksgiving for many reasons – to combat the caloric overload later in the day, to get in some exercise, to challenge themselves and to be with family and friends. To be able to do that and contribute to a good cause is truly something to be grateful for. I am also thankful for that fact that I can still run, despite some challenges over the past few years. Unlike previous years, when I ran 50-100 miles in races, this was only my 4th race of the year and my only timed race. And, a big THANK YOU to anyone who has read my blog over the past few years. This was my 50th blog post too – wow!
Pros: Great cause. Nice low key turkey day race. Well organized. Cute t-shirt.
Cons: None really. Weather can be iffy if you are coming in from out of town.
Course: 3.14 miles, non certified, chip timed
Cost: $25, $30 day of race. First 200 get a long sleeved wicking t-shirt, later registrations got a cotton t shirt
Time: 10 a.m.
Awards: Trophy & gym membership to top male and female and medals to top 3 in age groups (in 10 year increments)
Restrooms: 2 porta potties outside, one male, one female restroom in the firehall
Stats: 251/379, 45:37 (14:43), 29/54 in females 40-49 age group
** Scroll down to see more photos. **
Hope everyone had a wonderful turkey day! Until next time, see you on the roads…