DC Area Run: GW Parkway Classic Edition

Hey current or future runner! Have you ever heard of the George Washington Parkway Classic? If not…I’m here to tell you that you need to run this race sometime in your life. 

The Distance

First of all, it has two distances. You can choose to do the 5k or you can go big and do the full 10 miler. There’s no shame in whichever distance you full comfortable with. There are runners of all levels who run the 10 miler. Some people will even walk it.

The Course

If you know nothing about DC or Northern Virginia, you don’t know about the GW Parkway. It’s one of the main veins into the city and it is gorgeous. Two lanes into the city separated from two lanes out of the city by nicely groomed medians. It “starts” at Mt. Vernon aka George Washington’s home. This is the same place the 10 miler starts. It ends in Old Town Alexandria and you spend the majority of the course running along the Potomac River. At 8AM everyone lines up and starts their journey into the city. The course is fairly flat with the exception of a hill that feels much steeper than it actually is. This is only because it’s at mile 9 (how rude). There are bathrooms all along the course and water stops with water and Gatorade, as would be expected.

The Energy

This is what sold the race for me. I don’t take a lot of joy in running 10 miles but there is something so intoxicating about being around a bunch of other runners all working toward the same goal. People are incredibly supportive of complete strangers. Even though there are parts of the course that aren’t full of many spectators, I didn’t even notice a change in the energy. Everyone is just genuinely excited to be out there together.

The Weather

There are few times in DC when the weather is usually perfect. But the end of April is usually when that happens. The weather was a bit cold at first, but as you warm up, it seriously could not be better. I wore a Nike pullover with full length leggings and a short sleeve shirt. I was a bit warm towards the end but wasn’t willing to rip off my pullover.

Before you know it, you’ll be rounding the final corner into Old Town Alexandria and you’ll be done! It was an amazing feeling and I canNOT wait for this years race. Registration is open now, so get in before it sells out!

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