This is the first race in the Texas Bridge Series challenge, and the name does not lie! It is the toughest 10K I've ever run. Participants race from the Kemah boardwalk, past small rollercoasters and beautiful yachts, over the Kemah/Seabrook bridge. In all, runners make 4 passes on the bridge, and the incline is HARD. The views from the top of the bridge are worth it, and for runners who like to push themselves, this is a great race to do just that.It is chip timed with prizes for top runners in the standard categories.Swag: Finisher's medal (they post the images on their Facebook page) Race technical shirt for all participants and volunteersFinish Line: Ice cream, food drinks, vendors, and the Kemah Boardwalk rides, restaurants and hotels are all around you!Charity: This race benefits the Bridge Over Troubled Water charity organization - http://www.thebridgeovertroubledwaters.org/
Saturday morning was hot and humid – and sunny, the trifecta of running suck. Astronaut Sunita Williams was also running the race – on her birthday, no less – and provided some opening remarks. And then the gun went off. I started off strong, and I clocked my first mile at 8:04.33. And then… the bridge. Oh my God, the Kemah Bridge is a nightmare. I thought the Holyoke St. Patrick’s 10K was bad… nope. My first half marathon in Westfield, Mass.? Piece of friggin’ cake. At least it wasn’t tropical heat running that thing. Embrace the suck, embrace the suck: Mile 1: Flying! Mile 2: Ok, this bridge is steep, but yay, there’s a downhill! I’m flying on the downhill! Mile 3: Aw, crap, I have to go back up that bridge. Miles 4-5: Rinse, repeat, oh my God I’m going to die. Mile 6-finish: My legs are toast.After: Breakfast tacos! The Toughest 10K is definitely for tough people; you’re not going to make it if you don’t have something that keeps you going (even if it’s just the humiliation of having to walk). I knew that if I stopped to walk, especially uphill, I was a goner.
Great event, race start time was good so temperature was perfect and course was relatively flat so you could get a good time. Keep an eye on wind direction as head wind can make for a long return journey or vice versa. Due to the nature of the course and the 5km and 10km run at the same time without separation the 10km second lap can get congested at times which when ducking and diving through the crowds can be energy sapping. Great race in all though and a good way to start the December month after thanksgiving.