The Atlanta Thanksgiving Day Half Marathon "weekend" starts a few days prior with packet pick-up running Saturday through Wednesday. With a race the size of this one (10,000+ across the half marathon, 5K, mile, and 50 meter dash), a pre-race packet pickup is necessary.
Atlanta Track Club is great about trying to accommodate as many people as possible by hosting multiple pick-ups at various Big Peach Running Company stores across metro-Atlanta over several days leading up to the event. Due to popular demand, Atlanta Track Club had will-call packet pickup again this year. For a minimal fee of $20 (which half of the proceeds are donated to Atlanta Mission), runners were able to pick up their packet on race morning which was great for out-of-town runners.
I won't lie, it is always a little weird to lay out a 'flat runner' mid-week. Regardless, I was stoked to get ready to run one of my favorite races of the year. I decided to go back to my trusty "costume" of the past three years and run as a running version of a Pilgrim.
We arrived in plenty of time to eat 'breakfast', use the port-o-potty, and get ready to run without feeling rushed. The 5K started at 7:30 and the half marathon started at 7:45am, so I was able to hang out a bit until shortly after 7am when I headed towards the corrals to meet up with friends.
Between all of the half marathons that I have ran over the past 4 weeks, training, traveling, and the holiday season starting my body has just felt a little worn out. I still wanted to keep my goal marathon pace today for training purposes. I know this course very well and know the spots that I want to push a little harder and places where i might have to ease off just slightly. Thankfully I was running along side of my friend Chris, so I knew he would keep me in check and my pace under control.
It is go time - time to run and earn my turkey, mac-n-cheese, dessert, etc with a few thousand of my running community.
Yes, it is Atlanta and yes, it is hilly, but I absolutely LOVE this race and course. The course support along the way is great with everyone wishing people a happy Thanksgiving and cheering you on along the way.
February 2 - Hearts & Soles 5K - Decatur (FREE FOR MEMBERS!)
February 9 - Atlanta Hawks Fast Break 5K - Atlanta
March 2 - Road to Gold - Atlanta
March 17 - Publix Atlanta Marathon & Half Marathon - Atlanta
There are so many benefits to being a member of Atlanta Track Club including race discounts, discounted training programs, and more. Perhaps one of the most sought after perks is guaranteed entry to the 50th running of the Peachtree Road Race 10K on July 4th.
Remember, you must me a member as of February 1, 2019 to be eligible for member registration in March. To become a member (or renew your membership), go to the Atlanta Track Club website for more information.