Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Awesome 80s race report

Submitted by Heather Stewart @captainstewie

On Saturday I ran the Awesome 80’s 5K/10K. I wasn’t going to sign up for any more races this year...but I signed up for this one for a couple of reasons:
• There was a coupon!
• Who doesn’t love the 80’s?
• My friend Neil wanted to do this as his first race on his 30th birthday.

Sooooo, I went onto and spent some more of my hard earned cash to run and sweat! And run and sweat I did!

Let’s start here: My friend, Neil, moved to Santa Clarita for his job in January from England. When he said he wanted to run a race because most of our friends do it, I was all for it. After all, a 5K was my gateway drug and I’m all about getting other people hooked!

I woke up bright and early on Saturday morning and went and picked up Neil and our other friend Sara.  Neil and I were doing the 5K, Sara was signed up for the 10K!

This was a really really fun race!  The organizers were really successful with making sure there were crazy costumes like Mario and Luigi for people to take pictures with, there was an 80’s band and runners really went all out with the costumes. BUT, and there is a but…

The race had no corrals at the start. There were a lot of runners and they had to let us go in waves, so corrals would’ve been appropriate. The race started about 20 minutes late.  It was already a late scheduled race for Southern California in the summer. The 5k was supposed to start at 8:30am and it was already pushing 85 degrees by the time we got started!

I had never run at the Rose Bowl and I really liked this course.  One big loop for the 5K, Two loops for the 10K!

Neil and I started off together, but he kept a quicker pace than I did!  It was hot and I wasn’t trying to get a personal best.  I just wanted to have a good race and support my friend!  I could see Neil in his birthday hat in front of me for a while. Every once in a while I could see him turn around and look for me.

About halfway through the race I noticed I was catching up to Neil.  We had decided that we would both do our best even if it meant not running together…so about Mile 2, he was stopped to retie his shoe and I patted his back and kept going.

I ran negative splits!
MILE ONE: 12:30
MILE TWO: 11:30
I felt strong despite the heat!

And then I finished….36:08

Not too shabby, and (although the organizers ran out of water at the finish line (WHAT?!!!???) They ran out and restocked a lot, not a good thing) this was my FAVORITE PART OF THE RACE!

You see, I’m usually the last one finished in my group.  I don’t get to see people coming in and cheer for them. Soooo, I ran through the finish line and waited.

When Neil came through I got to jump up and down and welcome him!

Then we went to just before the finish line to wait for Sara.  The 10K started 30 minutes after the 5K, so we sat at the finish line cheering on the runners for about 45 minutes! IT WAS SO FANTASTIC.  I highly recommend doing this at a race! Just 10 minutes at a finish line will warm your heart, I promise!

I got to do this again the next day at the Disneyland Half where I stood at Mile 13 with signs for our friends including a #Run3rd sign!

I had never seen my running buddy, Heather aka Ditto, run in a race because we usually run together. I literally got chills and teared up!

BUT I digress…
Overall it was a good race! I’m super glad I did it and got to have the experience with Neil of his first race (he’s already picking out his next one <insert evil laugh here>)

However, I’m reminded that “Inagural” races are not always my favorite (with some exceptions).
I think the organizers put on an awesome race with great entertainment, but should be more concerned with the conditions and the safety of their runners.  Running out of water is unacceptable.


All in all in was a great day, a day where I :

* Run 1st for Me:  I was glad to have a 5K and get negative splits! PLUS, I will ALWAYS spend at least 10 minutes at a finish line cheering people on.

* Run 2nd for My Family:  My friends are my family and I was happy to share the experience with Neil and Sara and to make a runner out of Neil.

* I #Run3rd for those affected by Hurricane Irene,  Jessie in MN., Sunny the Dog, Sara’s Papa and YOU!

Sara “At any other race I would have no problem finding you in that shirt, but here…”
Neil (in thick British accent) “Like a virgin…5K for the very first time!”
Heather “It’s hotter than two rats screwin’ in a wool sock!”

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