Where to begin with this race recap?
This race was doomed from the beginning. I still had an enjoyable time, but there were so many snafus that it’s hard to even be mad. Due to some personal afternoon obligations, I had a rare Saturday off. I was able to do most any race in the local area, and it didn’t have to rely on an early start time.
Unfortunately race wise, this actually did me no favors, and it was both hot and humid at the start. By 10 am, it was already in the high 80s with the humidity at 99%.
But a race is a race, and my only goal is to keep trucking along. Any race I finish injury free is good in my books. My husband and I warmed up, and before the race, I had already sweat through my entire outfit. As someone who doesn’t sweat a whole heck of a lot, I knew it was going to be hot.
We lined up at the race start, and the race organizers told us to make sure the chip was on our left shoe. As we were waiting, they announced everyone was facing the wrong way, and we needed to turn around and move the chip to our right shoe. By this time, it was 15 minutes after the scheduled race start, and I was dehydrated.
Finally; they announced the race, and we were off. There were dozens of people in front of me, which made it easy to follow at the start. During the first half mile, we did a giant circle which actually caused us to cross paths and potentially collide with other racers going the opposite direction. I crossed the first mile in 6:20 and was pleasantly surprised. The course was relatively hilly, so I was excited to potentially break 20 minutes again on a difficult course. Little did I know what the next 2.9 miles would hold.
During the second mile, we began running a loop. By this point, a small pack had formed including my personal friend, Brittany and several men. As we passed one volunteer, he told us to keep going. We followed, and by the time I knew it, we had done a full loop and were starting the second loop.
I was now running by myself with several people following me. I directly asked the volunteer again which way to go, and he said to continue this way. I had a sinking feeling it was not accurate. I said: “I’ve already run one loop” and he said I still went that way. I hit the second mile in 6:27.
Several people followed me. Another volunteer then directed me into a parking lot and all of a sudden I found myself in someone’s back yard. I stopped for a second and just turned around and went back to the same loop I had already run twice. By that point, I had lost several people, and it was just myself and another guy running together. I saw the pack of women I had run with further ahead, so I was able to somewhat follow them.
As I approached the third mile, the volunteer directing told us to turn there. I knew I didn’t need the extra mileage because I was already longer. I asked him: “what about the other people running straight to the finish?” He laughed at said: they are going the wrong way.
I turned and headed around the lake. My watch beeped 3 miles, and I knew it was probably going to be another mile to go.
As I finally saw the finish line, we did a giant loop around a parking lot. My friend, Brittany, came back and directed me to the finish line. She had still run longer but had been directly to about 3.4. I crossed the finish in 26:12 and with stops had an overall pace of 6:42.
The race director was friendly and apologized for all of the issues. To be honest, I wasn’t looking for “the best race ever” but a good workout. Of course, it’s frustrating to have so many issues with a single race but if that is the worst thing to happen that day, I’m okay with it. I still had an enjoyable time hanging out with friends and supporting a local community.
It does give me confidence, I’m in sub 20-minute fitness when I have a good race.
Questions for you:
Have you ever run and get lost?
What is your ideal race start time?
I like 5ks that start between 7:30-8:30 am. I prefer half marathons to start at 7:00 am.