I signed up for this race, the Jack O'Smash, for two reasons: it was nearby and supported a local school district's special education program, and they had a 15k option (in addition to 1 mile, 5k and 10k courses). I think the 10k and 15k were new this year. Regardless, it was my first time doing it the race. I was just starting to ramp up my running for marathon training, and hadn't really done a long run since my last half-Ironman---in July! Since Vineman, I'd only been running 3-4 miles max, as I was concentrating on my biking for Pedal the Cause. I ramped up a bit before this 15k (which was on November 1) and thought it would be good to set a base of 9 miles on that date. In fact, I was supposed to do a 1 mile warmup, giving me 10 miles for the day.
I took the race very slowly. As it was my furthest run in several months, I wanted to go out nice and easy. Most of the runners were doing the 5k, some were doing the 10k and only a handful did the 15k. I was alone during most of it. It was hot and hilly, in an area of town (by Scripps Poway Parkway) that I never run on, although I've biked there for some hillwork. I don't have anything exciting to say about the course, except that I was glad to be done. Most of it was in an industrial park area, so pretty ugly. Combined with the heat and hills, it got brutal at times, but definitely doable. The finish was anti-climatic----a small keychain, in lieu of a medal, which said 5k on it. I don't care about a medal, but to get something that said 5k when I just suffered through a 15k (9.3 miles) was a letdown. Also, virtually no one was there since I was one of the last 15k runners to finish, and the 5k and 10k runners had long come and go. While it wasn't my favorite race. I did love the cause, and the fact that it was nearby, though---so don't count me out in future years.