My company has participated in the J.P. Morgan Chase Corporate Challenge for some time now. The race is held in 13 major cities on five continents, donating over $700,000 to charities. Each city has a different charity and this year Boston’s charity was the City Spotlights Summer Leadership Program, Emerald Necklace Conservancy. The program has teen leaders representing 20 different schools. The teens spend 5 weeks developing leadership and job development skills while also getting dance, theater and music classes to create an original piece of their own. Participants tour around Boston leading workshops on bullying and at the end of the program they have a final performance. The goal is to help teens learn that they are agents of change. Pretty cool!
As for the actual race itself, it’s a lot of fun. It’s not one you really want to aim to PR at. There are over 12,000 participants trying to fit around tight turns and narrow streets with lots of stop-and-go. It’s kind of like a circus with people weaving in and out, on the sidewalks, on curbs, on grass and whatever other way they can find to try to get ahead. Two years ago, I had some girl purposely elbow me because she was trying to get ahead of me. I am pretty sure I gave her the stink eye and said, “Really?!” Unless you are a top runner and start at the absolute front-don’t expect to try to compete!
The race is more about enjoying the Boston scenery and having fun with your coworkers. Or in my case…trash talking with your coworkers about who is going to be the fastest. This year was a little light on the trash talk because we all weren’t really training for it. Also, like I said, depending on where you start in the race-it can be impossible to run at a steady pace because it is so packed. This year, we all got stuck in the huge crowd because we didn’t head out to the start early enough.
I’m glad my coworkers enjoy running, doing obstacle races and challenging themselves to something new. I have so many lady friends that love to try new fitness feats with me-like the Healthworks Workplace Warrior Challenge and the Pure Barre Challenge. For this event, we decided to make our outfit complete with bright green shorts. We just need some lime green headbands and arm bands to complete our outfit!
In the end, I did pretty well with 30:32 (8:43 pace) which was about my goal time. I was worried about trying to run faster than my hips wanted to go. They did hurt towards the last stretch when I sprinted, but I expected that. I just couldn’t help myself because there’s something about sprinting at the end of the race that I love. I always try to leave a little steam so I can finish strong. But then you always wonder, should I have used that steam earlier?!
Thankfully part of the reason I was able to keep control the rest of the race was because I ran with my friend Aki. It allowed me to keep a healthy, steady pace instead of pushing myself harder than I should. I was so proud of her too because she used to think she would never ever get into running. Now she has a few 5ks under her belt and is looking for a 10k. She is even considering running a half marathon someday!
I am definitely looking forward to my next race, the Finish at the Fifty 10k at the Gillette Stadium!
What’s your next race?
Do you like working out with coworkers?