Miami Divas 5K – 3 November 2013
by Deb Benigni
The Divas Running Series (for Miami it was a 5K only) was clearly present judging by the sea of pink that greeted me upon my arrival at Tropical Park. Tutus, tiaras, and boas joined the usual running apparel for this event. The course was really well marked and there race overall was well supported. Three waves of runners and walkers kicked off the event at 8:30 sharp, following remarks from Ali Vincent, the first female winner of The Biggest Loser. I was impressed that a few men braved the ladies and even joined in and raced with us—practically guaranteeing that they won their age/gender groups!
I love running in Tropical Park—the changing scenery from Santa’s Enchanted Village to the lakes and ponds makes it a fun place to run a race. Despite the great location, the first two miles were brutal. Working toward getting faster, I had upped my interval pace from 5:1 to 6:1 and despite a <14 minute first mile (really fast for me) the race took its toll. It wasn’t until well after mile 2 I finally felt like I’d hit my stride and settled down into the run. Passing FRC’s Jesteffer Annichiarico, who was also running in the park, helped motivate me to keep going.
Just before mile 3 we finally got some of the Divas magic I was looking for, instead of a water station this time around the cheering volunteers were passing out pink boas and tiaras for the runners to wear crossing the finish line. Keeping up with my pace I slapped on my tiara, tossed my boa over my shoulder and headed toward the finish line.
Crossing the finish line you get treated like a princess—first a finishers medal with a glittery pink crown embossed on it, followed by roses and champagne! The race production company also had a finishers photo spot staffed by professional photographers for the runners to raise their champagne glasses and toast their success.
As for me, I didn’t do as well as I had hoped. I realize I’m never going to be at the front of the pack, but I need to remember that compared to everyone who just rolled over and went back to sleep this morning I still have something to be proud about. After all, after this morning I truly am a Diva!
“In running, it doesn’t matter whether you come in first, in the middle of the pack, or last. You can say, ‘I have finished.’ There is a lot of satisfaction in that.” ~ Fred Lebow