Disclaimer: I received an entry into the Hot Chocolate 15k to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!
So on Friday I went to the expo and grabbed my race goodies. On Saturday, I went for a shakeout run with my dog. No real goal but to take it at a dog pace (which means running for a bit, slowing to smell things, stopping, then getting really excited and running fast... we're still learning).
It was a chill night and an early bed time to make sure I was ready to go for a 7:50 start time!
So I had an early wake up and hopped in the car to head to Denver. The start and finish was in the Civic Center in Denver which is a beautiful park area. The city, state, and federal buildings in this area are really amazing! The morning was beautiful and the temperature was pretty much perfect.
Everything went really smoothly, no lines at the bag drop, no lines at the port-o-potties and the pre-race area was pretty chill. The 5k started at 7am so there was a lot of excitement as they were finishing and getting their goodies.
Time to get this race started!
And we were off around Denver! I really like running in Denver now that I'm more familiar with the area. It's fun to see both new and familiar places.
Mentally, I broke this race into 3 5ks, in this first 5k I wanted to start strong, the second I wanted to just maintain a comfortable pace, and in the final segment I was just going to see what I had left, with the hope of an ending kick. It went mostly to plan but I slowed down more in the middle 5k than I wanted to due to some inclines, but I just tried to find the balance between focused and fun.
I also remembered that the photos for this race were FREE so I made sure to gam for the cams!
The volunteers along the route were great with lots of Nuun and water stops along the way. At each stop they were handing out gummy bears but no other sweets which was a little disappointing since I was hoping to take advantage of the marshmallow stop again like I did in 2015.
I finished in a good time, but a little slower than I was hoping for but overall happy with the race. In past years my time would not have nabbed me a top spot in my age group, but this year I might have come in second in my age group, so fun!
I grabbed my medal (with mini city specific keychain!), my drop bag, and then it was the time... HOT CHOCOLATE TIME!
This was a great race and super fun. The whole experience is really friendly and great for veteran runners and newbies alike. If you want to take part in a chocolate filled run, you can check out their site, they have runs across the US: Hot Chocolate 5k/15k
Hope you can make some room in your race schedule for this sweet race!