This was the first run of 2016, for me.
It also was the first race I had done in probably 6 years – the last race I can remember was the 2010 Sun Run (one of the biggest 10K races in North America!)
I started training for it back in April, because I hadn’t been running consistently all year. I had run a little bit here and there, but I am race and deadline motivated, otherwise, I won’t tend to do it. This was the jolt forward that I needed!
My friend had suggested the race to me – we both saw all the ads on Facebook and thought “yeah sure, we can give it a try!”
Let’s start with the positive: I did enjoy myself for getting to do an active thing with my friend and I was pleased that this race was my catalyst to racing/doing sports competitions at least once a month. 🙂 I am aware that my expectations were high given all of the properly organized races I have done. This was billed to people who don’t take it seriously, and I vow to pay more attention to those warnings next time.
Yet, the negative mounted strongly in opposition:
It was such a gong show. First of all, it was billed as “all ages” and there was a beer garden, so upon my arrival to the venue, I saw an underage girl getting pulled aside by venue staff for underage drinking. Eeesh.
Second, there was no bag check. Granted, I could have been prepared that there might not be a bag check, but I also didn’t like how neither the website, the Facebook page, nor the event confirmation that I had been emailed said anything about if there would be a bag check. Given the size of the race and the venue, I was surprised there was none – the event staff looked at me like I was making an unreasonable request when I asked them if said bag check existed.
Third, the race was billed as “fun race for everyone” and that you didn’t need to run the race. Fair enough. What I was not expecting was a group of people walking very slowly while smoking cigarettes on the course. Alcohol was not allowed outside the immediate venue, so why were cigarettes? Moreover, why does anyone enter a race with full intent at the outset to do nothing??
Fourth, the race was actually not 5K as billed. The markers were in miles because it’s a race that travels through the United States predominantly. We only saw one mile marker, and that was at mile 2. We were not running very fast because of all the apparent obstacles, and we finished in less than half an hour.
Fifth, the DJ that was playing when we arrived was terrible. Not only could I hear them train-wrecking their mixes, I was appalled that someone was getting paid to be this awful on stage and that no one seemed to notice or care.
Sixth, the race was not late enough in the day for it to be a night run. It was quite daylight when we ran. Of course, it was summer in Vancouver in August so it doesn’t get dark til 10pm. Maybe that would have kept the underage drinkers at home, or perhaps it would have been even rowdier.
My friend and I inside the black light booth after the race finished:
The venue before the race began:
The venue when we finished the race: