Friday, May 29, 2015

Sean Astin's Bolder Boulder 10K Report

Submitted by Sean Astin, @SeanAstin
May 25, 2015 - Memorial Day

Today, I ran the Bolder Boulder 10k. It was the best produced event of that length that I've ever participated in. Congratulations to the event organizers!!! Thanks to Colorado University Boulder for your hospitality. To the dedicated community (including those handing out beer to daring slip and sliders on your lawns, the several people handing out bacon {weird}, all of the volunteers and the many many bands and musical acts: 2 belly dancing troupes, a Operatic performance (Magic Flute?), an Aerosmith cover band with-musta been an 11 year old girl playing Steven Tyler, the animal frat looking house screamers and on and on… WICKED COOL FUN BLAST!!!

Folsom Field, Colorado University Boulder

Boulder CO, you are a gorgeous town, if I wasn't married to LA, I'd seriously love to grab a drink with you.

The story goes like this, I went to Denver ComiCon Friday through Sunday. The energy at the convention was electric. People were totally into it, costumes and laughter from the opening to the closing bells. I had a great time meeting fans, taking pictures, signing autographs, doing a couple of generously attended panel discussions. Awesome!!!!

My last flight out Sunday night to LA was Cancelled, doh!!! Well, I had given fleeting consideration to staying an extra day to run the Bolder Boulder. But, my family is in LA waiting for me, so there's an experience deferred. OR NOT!!!! If I have to stay the night anyway... Well, the mad scramble to the Customer Service Desk was on so people could get their vouchers and rebook for tomorrow.

Not Seany-Boy… This is how I roll: "Honey, can you book me a car and a hotel in Boulder really quick, I'm gonna try and talk the airline people into pulling my bag off of the plane instead of just checking it onto the first flight in the AM." —PAUSE— "I wanna run in the Bolder 1/2, the altitude will be great training and the unplanned 1/2 will test me. It'll make me a few hours later, but I wanna do it." Her immediate reply came in the form of a vibration on my phone, an Avis rental car reservation confirmation." To say she's cool, is to give that word a major upgrade.

Smiles and Pictures with the United Baggage Claim team and I'm off to the Rental Bus. Oops, it's not a 1/2 it's a 10k. Well, I've come this far, I might as well jump into the Kia boxy thing, and check out this much ballyhoo'd 10k (6.2 miler).

Man, what a treat. These folks had their s*#% down to a science.

I ran anonymously except for one young lady who shook my hand and told me I made her Bolder. I replied, "that's awesome thank you" and then tried to wrap my head around what she meant.

But, here's the thing that I want to highlight, that should be the real take away from this day… Well, it was the 2nd event this weekend for me, whose premise was to celebrate/honor Memorial Day.

At the Colorado Veterans Project Memorial Day 10K
The Saturday before this, I ran in the Colorado Veterans Project "Memorial Day Run & March to Feed Homeless Veterans" in Castle Rock. This was a humbling 10k out and back run. On the way "home" I was seriously feeling the altitude, but dozens of soldiers with 25lb ruck sacks were just heading out on their 100 year Norwegian Tradition 30k trek. If they did it swiftly enough, they could add that badge to their uniforms. Needless to say, I tried to smile, nod, gesture, grunt my gratitude and try not to look like I was going to throw up as they passed. Truly an honor to participate with them on Memorial Weekend. The Chaplain made some lovely remarks, but he said something I disagree with. He said that this Memorial Day is not for saying Thank You For Your Service to our Service Members, it's for remembering the ultimate sacrifice that has been made by (I think he said 5 million-mighta heard it wrong) military persons over the couple hundred year history of our Nation. Of course, he's right, but I wouldn't have communicated it that way. It's ALWAYS a good day to thank Soldiers and their Families for the sacrifice they make on a daily basis. I mention this because I know that the phrase "Happy Memorial Day" buzzes as disrespectful. I'm pretty sure that the Chaplain meant that reverence and perspective are the right mixture for observing this National Holiday.

Then today, I had climbed to the top of the bleachers at Folsom Field, the home gird iron at CU Boulder. That's where I took the picture at the top of this post. The moment depicted is a standing ovation that spontaneously erupted when a group of Marine's carrying their Standard and Old Glory marched into the arena. It put a lump in my throat and tears in my eyes. Later a man in his sixties, hobbling and leaning heavily on his crutches, brought the 20,000 runner crowd back to their feet.


I am a runner. In recent days, that's been easy to remember and hard to live. But, today... Having substantially adjusted to the 5,200+ feet of altitude and found myself on slightly sturdier legs, I look to the Ironman Kona Triathlon on October 10th, just 4 months away, and I know that, when I've finished the cycle through the lava fields and I'm once again back in my shoes and following the long ribbon of asphault, I will journey back to today… the mountains, the cool breeze and welcome sunshine, the silliness and sober reflection… I will draw inspiration from the Bolder Boulder 10k…

I will remember the joy, the return of endorphins which have eluded me for awhile and the sense of peace that was a gift to this runner on this day.

A Prayer of Gratitude for All of Our Service Members and Their Families, Living and Passed, and My Prized Freedom that They Dearly Paid For.

Much Much Love,

‪#‎Run3rd‬ for Our Service Members & Their Families.

PS My "anonymity" gave way to enthusiastic tweets with the media after the run. Below are a couple stories they published. LOVE IT....


PPS This is a grab of me entering the stadium. If you can't find me quickly, picture Mikey from the Goonies, 30 years older, many pounds heavier and internally jumping for joy, while externally sucking wind. Oh… there I am!!!!

Photo courtesy The Denver Channel

1 comment:

  1. The Bolder Boulder is my favorite race and this is even cooler seeing one of my favorite actors (we're talking back to Encino Man) run it and give it such high praise.