Women Run The Cities: 3,500 Wonder Women on One Course
Editor’s Note: This post is written by Minneapolis Running Ambassador, Alisa Dean, and has been edited for length and clarity.
I signed up for the Women Run the Cities race on a whim. Plus, I thought the 10K would be a good motivator to keep me pushing towards my training for the TC 10-mile in October. Around 80% of the races I complete are ones that I might do again if they fit well into training, but I wouldn’t be upset if I missed them. This one was a bit different - I have never done a women’s only race and it was a unique experience!
About Women Run the Cities
With over 3,500 women participating in Women Run the Cities, it was inspiring to see the sheer number of women who were different ages, paces, and sizes. With a 20 minute per mile pace limit in the 10K race and a 15 minute per mile pace limit in the 10-mile race, this allowed for a wide variety of runners to take part in the longer distances. Even though I was at the back of the pack, I was still running with a group of people which was really helpful and kept me motivated towards the end. If you want a race where you will be supported and surrounded by other women this is the race for you!
Related: Are Women Better Runners than Men?
Women Run the Cities 10K Course
The 10K course itself was a good mix of downhill, flat, and a little bit of uphill running. Since the 10-mile and 10K started together we were able to follow the 10-mile pacers for the first 2.5 miles. The scenery on the course was primarily residential neighborhoods with a couple of bridge crossings over the Mississippi River. Even though it was a cooler day, I really appreciated the larger trees that shadowed parts of the road to give a little break from the sun. On the approach to the finish line, there was a great downhill that gave everyone a bit of a boost followed by flat road. There was even an announcer at the end announcing names as folks crossed the finish line!
Tips For A Great Race Experience
Here are four tips for a great race experience at Women Run the Cities:
Pick up your packet before the race.
When I volunteered at Saturday packet pickup it was clear that there were going to be a lot of folks picking up the day of the race. Picking up before race day also meant that folks could test out and change shirt sizes if they wanted to which was really helpful since shirts ran small this year.
Take the light rail.
As long as the race is in the same location next year I would suggest taking the light rail. The Blue Line has a stop right outside of the park and there was ample parking a couple of stops south at Fort Snelling. When I saw how many cars there were around the park I was incredibly happy I took the light rail in.
Pick up snacks at the finish line.
You will need them! The line to the brunch area was pretty long when I got there. What made the line pretty easy to manage was all the post-race snacks, chocolate milk, and water that was provided. Take the time to stretch and eat while you wait.
Bring your friends!
Your gal pals can join in on the 5K or do one of the longer distances. The park is a beautiful place to meet up and hang out afterward which means even if you don’t finish at the same time you’ll still get to enjoy some time together. There is also a fun run for kids and playgrounds around the parks to keep them entertained. So, feel free to bring the family with.