Races I Love to Run

by Lauren Scarupa

It’s hard to believe that it’s been three years since I moved to the Albany area, from my hometown of Lockport, New York. Since making the big move I have had the pleasure of meeting so many wonderful runners and competing in some awesome races! So far this year, with the help of my Fleet Feet and Albany Running Exchange teammates, I was able to compete in the Boston Marathon, the Singlecut Have a Drink on Me 5k, the CDPHP Workforce Team Challenge and the Colonie Mile, and am looking forward to running the Malta 5k as well. These are all such great running events, and I can’t help but to think how lucky we are to have such great running events so close by!

Boston Marathon (April 18th, 2022) The Boston Marathon is considered one of the world’s oldest and most prestigious marathons worldwide. The first running of the race took place on Monday, April 19th, 1897 and had a winning time of 2:55:10. Today that time has dramatically decreased, with a course record of 2:03:02 (2011) for the men and 2:19:59 (2014) for the woman. This is incredible, considering the course elevation gain of 891 feet, with the most difficult portion being at mile 20, or what is know as “Heartbreak Hill.” For many Boston Marathon runners this portion of the course ironically is both daunting and what keeps them coming back for more. I know this was especially true for myself. After, my first time running the Boston Marathon the only thing I could think about was how to get up Heartbreak Hill faster, as well as the three hills preceding it. Besides the history of this challenging course though, the Boston Marathon also has some of the greatest spectators a runner could ask for! With people lining the streets for the entire length of the course, get ready for motivational posters, cow bells, cheers, and hands eager to give high fives. How could you not love running this race!

SingleCut Have a Drink on Me 5k (April 30th, 2022) Ever since I moved to Albany this race has always been on my radar to run. This year I finally got the chance and had the best time! It takes place at the SingleCut North Brewery in Clifton Park and offers a neighborhood course with awesome post race festivities! From a complimentary beer and craft beer glass for each runner, to food trucks, lawn games, live music, and of course the brewery. You can make a whole day out of this race. I will definitely be signing up for this race next year!

CDPHP Workforce Team Challenge (May 19th , 2022) One of my favorite races I ran this year was also the CDPHP Workforce Team Challenge. This 3.5 mile race returned to Albany’s Empire State Plaza this year, looping around the city’s Washington Park, and ending with a speedy downhill finish. Back home I had always ran Buffalo’s version of this event, the JP Morgan Corporate Challenge, so this year I was so happy to be back at it again and run with my coworkers from Albany for the first time. This event is also a huge fundraiser for the Hudson-Mohawk Road Runners Club (HMRRC), which does so much for the running community in our area, including offering college scholarships, grants, free races for members and the Just Run Program for grade school children.

Colonie Mile (July 5th to August 9, 2022) Another new event that I have tried this year was the Tuesday night summer track series at Colonie High School, which runs from July 5th to August 9th this year. What I love about this series is that it gives people of all ages and abilities the chance to participate in track events, including field events, that are not offered as frequently as other events, such as 5k road races. This event is also sponsored by the Hudson-Mohawk Road Runners Club (HMRRC) and is free for everyone who chooses to run, which is definitely another nice bonus. Overall, this series is a great way to get in some speedwork or field event practice, and an awesome way to see how much you can improve from the first week to the last.

Malta 5k/10k (September 10th, 2022) One of the first races that I ran when I moved to Albany was the Malta 5k. This road race also offers a 10k option and is definitely one of the biggest races in the area, bringing out all the best runners! The race itself takes place in the Global Foundries Tech Park, a great place to run and where I have done many long runs with my teammates, which makes it even more fun to run. Overall, this race is an area staple, and I can’t wait to run it again this year!

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