Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Chaska 5K/10K/Kids Run 2015 (Free Range Bibs)


Chaska 5K/10K/Kids Run 
Average Pace 0:00/mile

Does the above 0:00.0 look vaguely familiar to you?  If you've been reading my blog for at least a year or so, I bet it does.  (Here's a hint - it's because of this.)

Ok, got your guess ready?!

Yep, you got it.  I'm doing another race recap for a race that I volunteered at - not ran.  And like last time, I never actually planned to run this race, since I knew I'd be of better assistance on the course rather than running the course. 

Heck, I even assisted pre-race, encouraging a few people to upgrade their race distance due to my presence.

And, so, that's the preface.  Let's get started.


At 5:30am on race day, my alarm went off.  Again.  Man, that never seems to be fun gets old!!  At least there's an up side to volunteering at a race: you can wake up some as you shower.

Since there's not much to "prepare" for on a volunteer race day, aside from a quick shower, I didn't have much to worry about.  So, by about 6:45am, I had packed up at the house and was on my way to the Community Center.  Once there, I checked in, grabbed my aid station supplies, and headed off to my post ... but only after a quick volunteer's VIP breakfast snack, of course.

I'm guessing, by the way, that you may be wondering what my aid station supplies entailed, since I discovered many on race day were expecting some spectacular costuming. 

Unfortunately though, due to my public location in a quiet suburban neighborhood on a non closed course, I decided to keep it low key.  That meant no costume - SORRY!!  But I did have a lovely race t and official badge.

And I brought my mini boom to blast music from my iPhone while I cheered runners on.


Seriously, these things are AWESOME! 
I was actually nervous at one point that the neighbors around the race course
might be mad that I was making too much noise with that tiny little thing.

In addition to the above supplies, I also had a few cheer signs, my car ... and then, there's the piece de resistance - the fanny pack.  Which may or may not have provided me with some additional entertainment while I awaited the first few runners on course.

Speaking of passing the time - aside from butt shots, I also passed time by documenting the steepness of the hill, which I was posted at the top of:

In case you can't tell how big this hill is, here's another perspective:

And one more photo with people in it, just so you can see scale.  Notice how you can only see half of the runner who is starting to crest the bend (just behind the bush on the left)?  Yeah, it's steep.

While I busied myself with butt selfies (buttfies?  belfies?), hill photos and choosing just the right techno songs to blast for the 10K runners (yes, I settled on a classic: pop bottles, make it rain, pop-pop bottles), back at the start things appeared to have gone off without a hitch.  Before I knew it, maybe not even 15 minutes into the race, the first few runners started to trickle by.

Surprisingly, the first few runners by were actually quite friendly as they passed, and I even got a few smiles.  Usually the more "elite"/fast runners are so focused that they don't even waste time on the likes of me, so that made things a little more fun.

Eventually, the trickle turned into a stream, and I started to really have some fun. 

You see, I was just far enough away from that bend on the hill that I was kind of hidden to many runners.  That meant I got a good laugh every time someone would give up running, just starting to walk as they rounded the bend and entered my field of vision ... because every time, never fail, as soon as they saw me they would get startled and try to play off their walking by starting to run again.

At least I was motivation enough to keep people running, right?  HA!

Anyway, since I knew many on course, I also played course photographer while I cheered, using my trusty iPhone.  One of the many photos I captured was this gem:

And if you have an eagle eye, you may have caught what was so funny about that one ... let's just say Brian had a free range bib:

At least he had a good sense of humor about it after the fact:


Eventually, amongst my techno tunes and photo shoots, and after the passing of the "free range bib", the steady stream of runners started to turn back into a trickle.  And then, not even 15 minutes after they started passing me by, they were gone. 

No more runners.  Time to pack up shop.

Since I was also due to assist with the kids race, scheduled to start after the 5K/10K was complete, I packed up and headed back to the race start/finish area.  Surprisingly, many 5K runners were already rounding the bend to the finish line.  Since I've always wanted to know what it was like to lead the pack, I decided to join them.

Hm.  I guess every fast runner must wave their iPhone at the race photographers and carry a cheer sign, no?  At least I know I was somewhat convincing, as I got booed by the kids who were spectating when I started to walk post photo-op.  They eventually stopped when they realized I didn't have a race bib.

By the way, I suppose that is just what I'd love to hear at the final stretch of a 5K - a handful of 6-8 year old kids booing me for a walk break.  LOL!  At least it would motivate me to finish strong!  I'm sure their real motivation for booing, however, was that they just wanted us to all run fast so they could get on with it - the best event of the day, the kids race.

Actually, I do really love the kids race just because it is so dang funny.  How can you not get a kick out of a race that starts like this:


No to mention, the kids running are always so determined!  The looks on their faces are a mixture of sheer dedication and laser focus.  Well, for the more serious ones, anyway.  There's always the random few who decide to skip, sing or pick flowers as they go (yes, this all happened, and more - it's a kids race after all).

As the kids thundered by on their out and back run, I shook my cowbell and cheered - which of course elicited lots of big smiles and looks of "wow, she's cheering for ME!".  (The REAL reason the kids race is the best event of the day). 

And then, just like the 10K before it, suddenly it was all over again.  The last runners trickled back to the finish line, and my day was done.  Slowly, I meandered back to the start myself, helping wrap up the day's festivities ... eventually packing up and heading for home.


And that's the story of how NO RACE BIB joined my collection, but I had a great time anyway.  Here's to another race soon!

No comments:

Post a Comment