When is a race not a race? (And no, I'm not talking about whenever I'm in it, so obviously it's no race when I don't stand a chance of winning...Better to jab yourself before others do!)

I'm talking about an event built around a race. As the press release proudly proclaims "An event intended to bring our community together for fun, fitness, and in support of important causes that serve our friends and neighbors right here in the Yakima Valley."

Sound pretty cool, huh?  If you are ready to run for fun, run for health, run to show your community spirit and run to support survivors of domestic abuse., then you are ready to run The Downtown Yakima Mile and lucky you, registration is now open at www.yakimamile.com

The race is Yakima’s only downtown community fitness event and this year the Downtown Yakima Mile supports Yakima’s YWCA, whose motto is “eliminating racism; empowering women.”

You say you're not in shape for it because the pandemic kept your exercise down?   No worries. You've got time to tune up because the race won't be held until August 28. So that's nearly 2 months to do enough road work so that your mile isn't an all day event!

The goal for this year is the same as it was in 2019 in the first year of the race  — to provide a healthy community event open to everyone, highlighting and celebrating the Yakima Valley on a local, regional, and national scale.

Did we say a national scale?  You bet your cross-fit shoes we did. That's because last time around there was more than 25-grand in prize money up for grabs and race records to break.  And the times turned in where impressive.  Amos Bartelsmeyer, running for Germany, set a new Washington state record for the mile at 3 minutes, 51.79 seconds!  While Therese Haiss of San Diego, who had just run the fastest mile for the state of California, won the elite women’s race in 4:29. She missed the state women’s record by a mere 2 seconds.

Time out.  You can't compete with that?  That's right and you don't have to!  This is all about improving on your own personal best and establishing the habits of exercise and healthy living.

Shout out to Hogback Development Company, for producing The Downtown Yakima Mile. They have big plans in 2021 working to make Yakima a premier competitive running destination. This year race proceeds benefit the YWCA which saw a jump in service needs of more than 30% last year! Find out more about the life-saving services provided by the Yakima YWCA at ywcayakima.org.