Can you tell from the title that I wrote this while still floating on a runner’s high? I just got back from the monthly Shake Shack run hosted at our Baltimore store that meets to enjoy a short run to this popular chain for a free drink on them (yes this is a real thing – check out your own area to see if they participate in Shake Shack Track or join us at Charm City Run every month if you are local). This month, however, was a particularly epic gathering.
For the past couple of years, Charm City Run has landed in the 50 Best Running Stores in America, an award bestowed by competitor.com. This year is extra exciting because we are a top four finalist! The application for this award was one of the first big projects I worked on when I started full-time so I was psyched when I heard the news! Anyways, because we are in the top four, a camera crew came to produce a feature on our store and we decided to showcase the monthly Shake Shack run in order to highlight our amazing running community. This run always gets a good turnout but WOW tonight it was packed to the brim in the Baltimore store!
Training group members, CCR staff and local runners created a room full of blinking lights, CCR and Maryland logo apparel, and every neon color in the rainbow. As we approached the store, runners jogged up the sidewalk and happy chatter surrounded me as soon as I walked through the doors. After a few pep talks and a ginormous group picture, we set off on an easy 3 mile loop around the harbor.
The weather was gorgeous, especially for a November night. I quickly warmed up in my long sleeve and leggings and could have easily been comfortable in shorts and a tank. I love running around the familiar sights of Baltimore and it was great to chat with Casey and Connor, two of my co-workers, as we easily rounded the docks of the Inner Harbor. (Another reason I love where I work – I have re-connected with so many old friends! Casey was one of my high school track teammates; we even shared a school record for the indoor distance medley relay.) The bright lights and neon signs along the way made it a great place to run in the dark. I had to apologize to them for verbalizing my runner’s high so much as I proceeded to not stop talking about how much I love running for a solid five minutes. Every corner we turned we saw glimpses of reflectors or CCR shirts to guide us along the path. I am still soaking up running simply just because it’s fun to run and it’s every more fun to run with other people who enjoy being out there too.
After reaching our goal destination, the three of us hung around outside Shake Shack to grab some water and talk to everyone. Running back with a fresh beer in my stomach just didn’t seem like it would be the most pleasant experience so I stuck to plain old H20 for tonight. I also used this time to start coaxing all my co-workers to train for a certain spring race together…more details on that later!
After a little while, Connor, Casey and I jogged the short way back to my car for about a mile and a half and then drove home. I’m still smiling thinking about how great this night was. A great fall evening run alongside the bright lights of the Baltimore Harbor with people who live to achieve that runner’s high. I love that this community is a part of my job and I feel pretty confident that I am lucky enough to be working for the best running store in the universe. Because honestly, the ones on Mars just can’t compete.
Do you ever participate in fun community running events? Have you enjoyed an epic runner’s high on a recent run? I would love to hear about your own experiences in the comments below!
*Shoutout to Dawn and Connor for the photos!