Race #13 – Running (through the Rain) to Celebrate Friendship, Running Community

Colorful runners brightened the landscape at the rainy Spring Valley 4-Miler

Race #13: The Spring Valley 4-Miler, part of the York Road Runners’ Winter Race Series

The Cause: The York Road Runners Club, dedicated to promoting running, racing, and healthy living in York County

Texts were flying the night before, and the morning of this race. One friend was sick, then a second friend was sick, and another was traveling. That left my friend Ali and I as carpooling buddies.

I should also mention it was POURING rain.

But real friends don’t let real friends run in the rain… alone!

We decided to go despite the weather, and run the second race in the York County Winter Race Series (even though it’s not winter yet!). We wanted some revenge at the Spring Valley 4-Miler, because we remembered its steep hills from last year’s series. We also remembered there being York’s famous Maple Donuts at the finish line, ha ha.

Me and Ali: Ready to race!

So, Ali & I were two of 184 runners who braved the cold, pelting rain and hills. Everyone was laughing and joking about how crazy we all were at the start. One brave dude was even shirtless. So it was actually a fun atmosphere–a true testament to the camaraderie of the running community and the whole purpose behind this race series.

Despite the rain and huge hills (which seemed bigger than last year), I actually finished a few minutes faster than my time last year. And I moved up to second place for my age group, in the points standings, which was a nice surprise.

And… at the finish line… Ali & I, along with our fellow runners, huddled under a tent to enjoy a post-race doughnut along with a few laughs about how insane we all were.

This was my third race in four days–something I’ve never done before. It worked because all the races were relatively low mileage races, and I didn’t go “all out” on any one of them. But stretching and yoga in between were definitely my friends. Time for a little rest and a few recovery runs–until next weekend!

The purpose behind all of the York Road Runners Club’s Winter Race Series is to provide community and motivation during the colder months. It’s a wonderful concept to embrace.

The reason we race isn’t so much to beat each other… but to be with each other.”

Christopher McDougall

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