I opened my inbox yesterday to find my 2013 Cox Providence Rhode Races
Athlete Guide with official pre-race instructions for the UnitedHealthcare Providence Half Marathon on Sunday, May 12.
I have to say, I’m really excited for this race. It’s only the second race I’ve done in Rhode Island, a place I’ve fallen in love with in the last few years. And there are so many great running puns to be had with Rhode Island, as the “Rhode Races” series attests to.
I’m doing the Providence Half Marathon as a training run. No racing this one for me. My training has been patchy the last few weeks for various reasons—travel, work, all the usual suspects. I’ve been doing more cross training than running in the last month—snowshoeing, aqua jogging, swimming, biking. I have been running too, but not enough to have delusions of running a personal best.
So my goal for the race is to go out there, have fun, and run a steady easy pace. I don’t know Providence all too well and the course visits parts of the city and beyond that I’ve never been to, so I’m excited to just take in the town as a tourist runner and have some fun.
I certainly won’t be alone. Over 2,000 runners will be storming the Providence Half Marathon with me, including my husband. And another 1,500 runners will be tackling the Cox Providence Marathon, including 200 runners who were diverted from the finish of the 2013 Boston Marathon and received complimentary entries into the race.
It won’t be the smallest half-marathon I’ve ever done. That distinction belongs to the Yonkers Marathon and Half Marathon with just 1,000 runners combined. But it will be the next smallest. It’s appropriate for the country’s smallest state, nicknamed “Little Rhody.”
In looking at the entry lists, it looks like most runners are coming from Rhode Island, Massachusetts and Connecticut with plenty of other New Englanders too from Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine. But there are also a handful of runners from further afield like Texas, California, Colorado, Illinois, Arizona, Oregon and even Canada.
So farewell New York, and hello Rhode Island! I’ll see you on the Rhode! (Sorry, I just couldn’t help myself.)
Karla Bruning is host of On The Run, New York Road Runners’ show about running. She has finished six marathons, two triathlons and trains with the New York Harriers. Follow Karla at RunKarlaRun.com, The Washington Times Communities, Facebook and Twitter@KBruning.