To motivate me while training for the 2021 Chicago Marathon, I read a lot of blogs of people who talk about their running and race recaps. Many people were participating in an event called “Hot Chocolate 15K” which seemed like a lot of fun. I learned that it was actually going to happen in Charlotte in February, so I decided that would be a lot of fun to try. The 2022 race happened on February 19, which was the weekend before the 2021 runDisney Princess weekend. I didn’t think the 15K would be possible that close to the challenge, but the 5K seemed like a perfect alternative.

2022 hot chocolate run flat

One of the reasons this race is popular is because of all of the swag. Instead of a normal race shirt, participants get a really cool puffy coat! The size fits small, but it’s really comfortable and warm.

In Charlotte, it was a big race. They held the expo at the convention center, which means it must be a big race. For having such a big space, the expo was very small. I think they could use a different, less expensive option in the future

Race Details

Race morning was busy and COLD! There were a lot of people! We gathered at First Ward Park where fun music was playing. I think this marshmallow man is the mascot for the race.

A lot of people were planning to do the 5K, but a good number of people were going to tackle the 15K. It was my first 5K in a very long time, so I was excited and a bit nervous. I hadn’t stuck to a consistent running schedule since Chicago, but I also had the Fairy Tale Challenge looming in front of me.

2022 Hot Chocolate 5K Charlotte course

End of the Race

The race was a lot of fun and very hilly. I walked twice during the race but still earned a 5K PR (32:45), which was exciting. Another reason people like the race is because of the chocolate fondue at the end, which is really cute!

2022 hot chocolate finish picture

The medals were also really cool! Overall, I highly recommend this race and would do it again in the future. Super fun and low-key!