Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Pride 5k

Exploring the lily pond before the race
Last summer I swore off night time races.  I had a few bad experiences and told myself I wouldn't do it again.  But then the Pride 5k came up and I reconsidered.  A friend of mine told me he'd been wanting to start running again and needed a race to train for.  We picked the Pride 5k and registered as a team.  As many of my friends can tell you, I'm always trying to recruit new race junkies.  I love having friends who run because that means I don't have to run a race alone.  Even if we have a different pace, it's nice to have someone there when you start and waiting for you when you finish. 

Waterfall near the lily pond

This was the inaugural race for the Pride 5k and they still have a few kinks to work out, but overall I had a good time.  Typically, a few days before packet pickup there's an email reminder with directions (time, place, etc).  I didn't get receive anything and ended up missing it completely.  Thankfully they also offered packet pickup at the race so I was still able to grab my swag which was pretty nice!  We received a drawstring bag, tshirt, and various other goodies including a pedometer in the bag. 

Eric and I pre-race (sweet shirts right!?)
The course was one that I don't run often, the lakefront path near Fullerton.  It was a nice change of scenery and I was able to visit some of the nature areas before the race to do some relaxing and reflecting.  This race was pretty small (around 300 runners I would guess) so there weren't any overcrowding issues or long wait at the starting line. 

Eric and I started together towards the front and shortly after he broke away with the front of the pack and I hung back a little to keep an easy pace.  The air was dense with fog and I found myself slowing considerably to focus on my breathing.  For the first time in about a year I started to feel a bit of cramping in my side.  Things weren't looking good for me after the first mile but I just kept chugging along. 

crazy dense fog along the lake, it was like breathing soup
Per usual, as soon as I hit the turnaround I got my second wind.  I saw that many of the runners had stopped to walk so it was time to make my move.  Whenever I need some motivation I pick people out to race and keep track of how many I'm able to pass.  There were a few stubborn ones out there who noticed my agenda and kept trying to pass me once I was ahead of them.  There was one particular couple who trailed me in the last mile and kept sprinting ahead in an effort to beat me.  What they didn't know was that I was still holding onto my final reserves.  Once the finish line was in sight I really kicked in the afterburners and was untouchable.  As I charged ahead through that last tenth of a mile I heard a guy yell out to me "Yeah!!! Way to finish strong!", thank you sir :)  When all was said and done I had passed 15 runners in that last mile and half. 

Eric was there waiting for me and we exchanged stories about our run as we searched for a table to claim.  We enjoyed a post-race beverage and watched the crowd as it transformed into a sort of rave-club-feel atmosphere.  This race wasn't timed and much more about the party and fun than speedy finishes.  Even so, according to my Nike+ app I clocked a new PR so I'm still reeling from that accomplishment.  If you're looking for a run, no pressure race this is a great one with some really fun swag.

post-race celebratory beverages

cool landscape we stumbled upon walking back to the car

1 comment:

  1. Way to go!

    I am impressed you got a pedometer in your goodie bag. I've never seen those in a bag.