I was really excited when I found out that there was going to be a local 5K this past weekend. I didn’t register ahead of time, but there was onsite registration before the 9:00 a.m. start. My mom came over to watch the boys for a while. With a 9:00 start time, I left the house a little after 8:00 and figured I’d be home before 10:00.
Registration was interesting. When I got there, the race organizer was trying to get some volunteers to go stand at the corners to direct the runners. The organizer told me that she had only one person who preregistered for the race. I was number 2, my friend Tara was number 3.
I picked up my T-shirt and went to sit in the car to stay warm.
At least the shirt wasn’t white. I have a TON of white race shirts. And, ‘lama’ was the way they spelled it for the entire weekend’s events. From what I could gather, it was a proper noun and not referring to the animal in general, hence the ‘mis’ spelling.
The weather was crappy. It was raining and cold. I was wearing my running tights (more on that later), a long sleeved tech shirt, my running jacket, a baseball cap to keep the rain off my face and gloves.
About 8:45, I got out of my car and headed toward the school where the other runners were gathered. There were a grand total of 6 runners! Seriously. Five women and one guy who does all the local races. We walked over to the start line and the organizer yelled “go” and started a timer on her phone.
I had an idea of where the course was supposed to go. The organizer had painted red arrows on the streets to direct us. And there were supposed to be volunteers at each intersection. I realized the first problem relatively early. Another event had taken place recently that had also painted red arrows on the roads. The second problem was that it had been raining and windy and the roads were covered with wet leaves, so the arrows were impossible to see.
But the biggest problem was that there were no volunteers at some of the corners. I tried to follow the guy ahead of me, but he is significantly faster than me and I lost him after the first mile.
I tried to remember the course, but there were so many turns that I couldn’t remember where I should go. Finally, I saw another volunteer and he told me to take a left. Great! Except that I was now heading back to the start/finish area. I was really confused. I saw the guy ahead of me doubling back on a part of the course he had taken. I thought that maybe there was a turn around down that road, so I went down that way too. Turns out it was a dead end. So, I headed to the finish line. I crossed the line and looked at my Garmin. 2.4 miles! That is not even close to a 5K.
I was pretty disappointed because I was looking forward to seeing what type of speed my legs had in them six days after a marathon. But a 2.4 mile run is very different than a 5K.
And, I was doing pretty well and I can’t help but wonder how things would have finished for me. I ended up covering 2.4 miles in 19:41.
Mile 1: 8:00 (too fast, why do I do that to myself)
Mile 2: 8:23 (still faster than my 5K PR pace)
Mile .4 8:12
I did manage to come in as the first woman overall, so there’s that!
Super close to my house. I was home by around 9:45. I love local races and I wish there were more.
First woman overall. That has never happened to me before.
Being associated with the craft festival. If I had had time to stick around after the run, there would have been plenty for me to look at. They even had a petting zoo and real llamas. Jaden would have loved it.
Obviously the mistake on the course. That is what is kinda leaving a bad taste in my mouth.
The course had too many turns. It is easy to get lost. When you are laying out a course, try to have the fewest turns possible.
The weather. I think that there would have been more participation if the weather hadn’t been so crappy.
Overall grade: D — I can’t overlook the bad directions on the course, but I would probably do this event again if they can overcome the first year issues. They should do some more advertising and change the course. Also, the price was a little steep for a local 5K with no bibs, no chip timing and no refreshments after the race.
Up next, the Halloween 5K race up in Park Falls. It is another inaugural race, but I’m hoping that things will go well. I know that course is on the high school cross country course, so it should be accurately measured. I’m just not sure that I’m looking forward to running on trails and grass (especially if it is raining).
Oh, and about the running tights. I bought them a couple years ago when I was still toting around some post-partum weight. They are definitely too big now. Every couple minutes during the race, I had to hike them up so that I wouldn’t lose them. Time to go shopping, I guess.