Race Report - Wounded Warrior 5k

Monday, November 9, 2015

I was hoping to post this report with a nice photo or two. The event organizers of this 5k took photos and assured me that they would post them on their FB page. However, the way the race was organized....I'm not holding my breath. 

This race was not for the Wounded Warrior Project (which you should research before giving money to), but for  Wounded Warrior Safe Harbor.

With that out of the way here's the report: The weather was off-and-on misting and it was about 70 degrees. The race had quite a lot of goodies; t-shirt, finisher medal, dog-tag with the wounded warrior logo on it and lots of snacks and drinks. Very impressive for a tiny 5k! They even had signs telling you where to line up based on your predicted finish time. 

I was feeling tired because I had run 18 miles in the previous three days, but I optimistically lined up with the under 20:00 crowd. There start line was not really defined,  which I found strange, it was just 'under' an inflatable rainbow-thingy with no real 'line'. They started us off and there was even a truck with a timer on it ahead of us so we could see the official time the whole race. I ran out with the lead group (about 8 of us) and knew I was in trouble. I was fairly certain my legs were made of lead and, though the course was completely flat, I wasn't going to be able to keep up with the top guys. My first mile I clocked a blazing 5:59 and promptly started to decline. 

At the 1.5 mile mark I found myself in 'no-mans-land'. There were 8 guys in front of me with the closest about 80 feet away and the nearest guy behind me was about 100 feet away. This stunk. I was already feeling like I was dying and now I was going to die alone. 

Slowing considerably I pressed on towards the end of my pain, or my life, whichever came first. I as rounded a corner into the last 400 yards I heard a guy trying to push past me. I chanced a brief look and saw it was a guy pushing a jogging stroller looking like a steam engine that's about to explode. I thought I had nothing left as a kicker until I saw him. I couldn't let stroller man beat me. I somehow increased my pace just enough to keep him in my rear-view and finished in 19:38 a new PR! I went up to stroller man after the race and told him how impressed I was with him for running while pushing a kid. Though I beat stroller man, he's a winner in my books.

My pace looks like the decent of an airplane.
Somehow I set a new PR. I wasn't really thinking that would happen due to my fatigue level. This makes me excited to try for a new PR when I am fully rested! 

The race, which seemed so organized, didn't track or record times. When I asked about it I was told that it wasn't for 'time'. This puzzled me greatly because that is EXACTLY what a race is; it's running a set distance for time. Someone else asked about this in the group's FB page and someone had the nerve to say that we should run to support them not so someone can track our time. But it's not one or the other. You can run a race for support AND want your time tracked. This race is an example of an organization deciding to hold an event without ever talking to a runner. They had the swag and the bling but not the race results. I'd take official results any day over a t-shirt I'll never wear again.

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