My friend Bianca (the Yale PhD student doing research in Dallas for the summer, that Bianca) spotted this race online and asked me if I wanted to run it with her. We had so much fun at the last race we did together, I’m majorly in need of some destressors, and my schedule was wide open, so I gave her a big “heck yes!”
Unfortunately, what I though was a big “heck yes!” must have been just in my mind. We got our wires crossed, and she didn’t realize I had agreed to do the race. Thus, when I showed up at Reverchon Park last night, I never did find Bianca.
Alas, I was there, so I was going to run the race. I ran previous night race back in March. I didn’t really love that race, but I thought that this one might still be good.
It wasn’t. In fact, this race was a big poop sandwich in my book. My complaints:
- The race was billed as a 5k. In fact, it was only 2.17 miles on my Garmin. Now I know Garmins can be wrong, but that wrong? And I know that this race location can accommodate a 5k; I’ve run one here before. They just mis-measured. Boo.
- The trail was far too narrow to accommodate the sold out 1,200 person race. It was so crowded that for the first half mile, I was trotting at a 13:00/mile pace. And the entire first mile I was elbow to elbow with other people. Super crowded.
- It was too dark. I know, it’s a night race, it will be dark, but I just think it is unsafe. Even with my lighted hat atop my head, I couldn’t see where I was stepping. Danger, Will Robinson!
- Folks that came out for a casual glow experience were walking 5 wide at some points. That’s cool if you want to take a leisurely stroll with your 4 best buds, but why didn’t you line up at the very back of the start? Why aren’t you over to the right? Why are you scowling at me as I push through you? It’s a race!
- The water at the finish line was hard to locate. Keep in mind, the temperature was about 97* when the race finished. They should have had volunteers handing water bottles to people. Instead, I had to wander around in the dark to find it gasping “water! water!” as I went.
It’s not all bad. The positives:
- My biggest worry (parking) was actually no big deal. I parked in a parking garage directly across from the race, and there was no crazy traffic getting in or out.
- The volunteers were extremely friendly.
- The race benefits a really awesome cause, Back on my Feet. BomF is a national organization that supports the homeless by getting them involved in running as a means of boosting their confidence and self-worth. Very cool. Next time, I’d just write them a check and run around my neighborhood instead of attending this race.
- Mile 1: 10:16
- Mile 2: 9:09
- .17 mile: 6:53
- 2.17 mile finish time: 20:35
- Average pace: 9:30 per mile
Because I was going so slow (trapped in by wall to wall people!) at some points, when there was free space, I was hauling ass. According to my Garmin, the max pace I hit was 5:56. Oh, that’s why I felt like I was going to die. I’m not a huge fan of speed walking followed by balls-to-the-wall sprinting. Not my style. The race was majorly messing with my head, so afterwards, I hit up DQ for a Blizzard.
Who do I see in the drive-thru holding my blizzy? A former student from my very first year teaching! I can’t tell you how much pride it gives me to see my once-teeny-7th graders all grown up and working. I helped mold a productive member of society! (Mission accomplished!) And the fact that she recognized me (and didn’t comment on how rough I was looking) was even better. All’s well that ends well, I suppose.*