I hate to pick favorites, but Safety Harbor IS my favorite of the Best Damn Race series races. Its the original race and the first one I ever did. Seven years later and my love for this race has only grown. So you can imagine my disappointment when I woke up two days before race day with a gnarly cold.
After a full day in bed and lots of cold medicine, I headed to Safety Harbor to start my weekend. For the first time since I started doing this race I was staying for the entire weekend. I was staying with a fellow BDR ambassador and we were so excited to be having a girls weekend together. It was going to be fun damn it!
One of the things that I ALWAYS suggest to anyone thinking about doing this race is to stay at the host hotel, the Safety Harbor Resort and Spa. The race expo is there, the start line is out the front door, and the post-race party is in their back yard. How can you go wrong with that? Plus they have a great pool area right on the water and a spa to take care of all those post-race aches and pains. Just take my word for it and book a rook there okay?
We started off the weekend with a stop at the race expo to get our packets for the next day and then drinks and appetizers at Barfly, a BDR Safety Harbor tradition, before heading down Main Street for a bit of a bar crawl. On our second stop of the night we met up with another BDR ambassador and her hubby so things just kept getting better. After stop number three we finally called it a night since we had races in the morning. Let me tell you – that was one of the best nights sleep I’d had in awhile.
Saturday morning got off to a wonderful start with some amazing weather. I was supposed to do the 10k + 5k challenge, but I knew that I just didn’t have it in me. So I made the call to just do the 10k this time. I did the race with some friends that were also experiencing some health issues and we had a great time. It definitely wasn’t a PR race, but who cares! We enjoyed the beautiful course, the amazing weather, and chatted the whole time. How can you go wrong with that?
Right after finishing the race I headed to the waterfront for a moment by myself. Shortly after I got home from this race last year my grandfather passed away. So I took a moment to myself to remember him and take a photo by the water. This race will ALWAYS be for my Pop-pop which makes me love it even more.
We had two friends who were doing the half marathon, so we enjoyed the post race party while waiting for them. The post-race party at Safety Harbor is always amazing, but this year was one for the books. I’d powered through the race and I wasn’t about to give up now! As if the atmosphere, location, and loads of adult beverages weren’t enough, this year Outback was one of the post-race party sponsors. Let me tell you that grilled chicken (and steak for those who eat it), Caesar salad, and their amazing brown bread REALLY hit the spot. I wasn’t really sure what I thought about Outback food right after a race, but once I had that plate of food in front of me I was sold.
Once our friends finished we took full advantage of the post-race party, the beautiful weather, and even did a bit of shopping. Haley and I are already Goodr glasses junkies, but I think now our friends are as well.
Per tradition, we followed up our race morning with lunch at Barfly. The food and service is always on point, and they have a great selection of beer (just in case you didn’t get enough after the race). But this year included a post-race activity that I hadn’t gotten to enjoy before…. a nap. Yep, a nap. Five adults headed straight back to the Safety Harbor Resort and Spa to take an amazing multiple hour nap. It was fabulous! Plus it gave us the second wind we needed to enjoy the rest of our day.
Thanks to the Best Damn Race crew for another amazing race! Even if I wasn’t an ambassador I would still be telling you all about this amazing series. If you are STILL not signed up for a Best Damn Race, you have a little bit of time left to join the fun. AND, if you use code MEGROTH you can save $5 on your Savannah (until 2/14), Orlando (until 2/16), and New Orleans (until 3/10). Go sign up!
*Disclosure: As a Best Damn Race ambassador I do receive some perks and this race was complimentary for me. But as always, all thoughts and opinions are 100% my own.