Race Recap: Celtic Solstice 5 Miler

Hey friends!  Hope everyone enjoyed their weekend!  This past Saturday, I ran the Celtic Solstice 5 Miler in Baltimore.

This is my 5th time signing up for the race, but really only my 3rd time running it since it got snowed/iced out 2 other years. Unfortunately, they won’t cancel the race for inclement weather and there is not a refund.  So I got smart and sign up just a few days before the race when I can view the forecast. 😛

With the race start being at 8:30 am, my running partner and I decided to leave our ‘hood by 7 am to give us enough time to get there, park the car, and use the port-a-potties. Thank God we did leave early because we thought we would be smart and take a back road to the start area (the Maryland Zoo). We did this because the main way to get to the start is a short exit off the main highway and every year it is notoriously backed up and you are just waiting. Well when we tried to take the back entrance into the zoo, it was closed off. Womp womp! Then we drove around to the front of the zoo, where Santa was waving in traffic to another parking area. Well we must have been on the naughty list this year, because when we pulled up to the lot the attendant (Santa’s helper?) told us the lot was full and we would have to find another lot. So we turned around and were luckily pointed down another road, where we parked right at the start!!  Score!!

After parking, I quickly spotted the Irish Wolfhounds that kick off the race each year. I love petting these gentle giants!  This boy was 165 pounds!

 

Soon enough, it was time to start the race! We all had to walk up the road and turn around to run the other direction. Kinda awkward and it was packed. I couldn’t see the bag pipe march with the dogs but I sure heard it! So much fun!

Then we were off!  It snowed the day prior so I had to watch my footing but the race route was pretty well salted. Mile 1 was crowded but honestly, I do this race for fun. If you follow me on Instagram, you know my fitness watch broke a few weeks back. That allowed me to not be constantly looking at my time and just enjoy the scenery. The course goes through Druid Hill Park, which is America’s third oldest park. Oh, and it’s hilly as all get out. It was fun to run by all the quirky features of the park such as an old graveyard, pools, tennis courts, a K-9 Police Unit, and the Zoo. By mile 4 I was feeling the hills but knew the last mile would be over quickly.

After finishing, I quickly went to the post-race tent and grabbed some mulled wine. That’s always the food item that has the longest line. So right there is your incentive to run a little faster during the race 😉

Basically, the post-race food is the reason why I run the race. Other than the mulled wine from Boordy Vineyards, there is delicious soup (think it was vegetable soup?) from a chef in Baltimore, Italian cookies from Trinacria Deli in Baltimore, and coffee and hot cocoa from Zekes.

Another fun year at the Celtic Solstice in the books!

So tell me, what’s your favorite Christmas-themed race? How many of those cookies would you have eaten post-race? Be honest 😛

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