This year has just flown by. It seems like I just registered for this race and I’m already writing a recap. I don’t have many family members that run or really support/understand my running. Hubby is the only one that comes to races or really gets involved so it was nice to be invited by hubby’s cousin to run with her. Besides that, how can you possibly say no to a race that’s all about chocolate?

  
We drove up (about a 4 hour drive from where we live) and hit the expo together. Their kids loved it too since there was chocolate everywhere in the expo. They had hot chocolate and marshmellows dipped in chocolate. It was like heaven for this girl. The expo was organized pretty well and they had some really cute things to buy that were all about chocolate. 

The swag bag was amazing! We got our bibs and goodie bag. Instead of shirts they gave out zip up jackets and they were embroidered with the city we ran in. They also had a code you could use to get a free buff band (my favorite headbands!!) ! I sprung for a a cute purple tech shirt that says I run for chocolate

Race day same quick and the weather sort of cooperated. We were worried about thunderstorms. It was about 60 degrees and  raining the whole way. We got there a bit early and my jitters were going. We hit the porta pootties and then took prerace pics around the area. 

  
This one is my favorite!

This race was huge! It was tough to get into the corrals because there were so many people. It was my first ever experience with a wave start. I’ll admit that it threw me a bit when I saw the time at the mile markers. I started off with my cousin and I kept up pretty well at first. I fell behind a bit after a while, though. She’s an awesome beast of a runner and I had already told her I was fine if she needed to take off at any point. I kept her in my sights most of the way. 

I hit the 10 k point just a few minutes behind her and right about at my last PR. I kept an 11:30 ish pace for most of the race. Then came the last two miles. Whoever planned this race course was a bit mean. The last two miles were all hills. You finished one hill only to be at the  start of another one. Turn a corner and there’s another hill. 

I finished about 10 minutes behind my cousin. I finished the race with a time of 1:52 and I am happy with that! I had to walk a little and my knee had some tugging in the midst of those hills. I do know that I feel ten times stronger than I was. The only negative I have is that I have this weird toe pain. 

The aid stations were all stocked with fun goodies. They had marshmellows, chocolate chips, and m&ms. The marshmellows were fine for me but I regretted the M&Ms. The finisher’s mug was great too and the pictures were free to download! 

   
    
 I have to say, I loved this race!  The swag is awesome. The race was excellent and the finisher’s mug totally makes running 9.3 miles worth it. 

   
 
If you have the chance to do a Hot Chocolate series race, do it! 

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