So I was doing my 10K last Thursday on Burke Gilman Trail when I stumble upon this sign board saying that my favorite trail will be busy on Sunday for an event named – “Beat the Bridge“. Curious, I went online to know more about this event. The race is a fund raising activity to beat diabetes and is 8km/5miles around Portage Bay – cool. The starting line is at Husky Stadium, University of Washington which is 4kms from my apartment. I could do a 4km warm-up to get the venue and then run 8km – perfect for my long run. Double cool!
Saturday noon I was at Husky Stadium to register. I was asked at registration what would be my estimated time so they could put me on one of the three waves for the 8K run. I figured my intention was not to race so I signed up for the last wave. After paying the reg fee and getting my shirt, I went on spending this great Saturday weather shopping with my friends at an outlet mall outside Seattle.
Race day, I woke up excited to blue skies. After a light breakfast, I proceeded with my 4k warm-up to the race venue. It was a very slow pace as I was conserving my energy for the 8k. There was a huge number of runners when I arrived at Husky Stadium. The race started 5 minutes late as the timing chip provider had technical problems. First off are the walkers then Wave 1, Wave 2 and finally Wave 3.
Going around Portage Bay means we have to crossed two bridges – Montlake Bridge and University Bridge. I reached Montlake Bridge a few minutes as it was just near Husky Stadium. One bridge down one to go.
I was almost at the University Bridge when I heard the bells ringing. Was there a boat coming? How can that be when there is an ongoing race. At the foot of the bridge, I saw hundreds of runners stood still and looking at the other side of the bridge. And then the bridge raised up. This made me realized that the purpose of this race was to cross the bridge before it raises. If I knew this earlier, I would have joined Wave 2. Too late!
I immediately went to race mode after the bridge went down. Probably the 4km warm-up did its job. The race ended inside Husky Stadium. It’s my first time to be inside the stadium – football and track oval. Now I know where I could do speed training (miss Ultra!) Minus the waiting time at the bridge, I finished 8km in 46 minutes. A new PR!
Wish I could do this again next year and beat the bridge but I would be back in Manila by that time. We’ll see.