Race Recap: Bastille Day 8k

Thursday 7/12 ~ Bastille Day 8k

Time: 56:55 ~ 8k  11:29/mile pace.  Added 4:13 on to my time, but it was HOT.  and I felt better than I did after the Shamrock Shuffle (until I crashed in the evening and had to crawl in to bed).

This race had some pluses, and beacoup minuses (see what I did there?  En Francias…).  Let’s start with the pluses!  A lovely friend of mine told me about this race, so I decided to sign up and do it too.  Her experience last year sounded great, and since I don’t tend to do many evening races, I thought I would join!

Me & A!
Me & A! Happy Bastille Day!

Since May, my runs have only been between 2-5 miles.  I got up to 5.5 run walking last week, but my motivation has been somewhat lacking.  So I was intimidated by a 5 mile run.  It was also HOT.  Warmer than I’ve been used to, especially since all last week I cowered inside in the AC on the track at Urban Active in Grandview while visiting my parents!

The first mile felt really good.  Although this race was pretty crowded, I never really felt like I was crowded in by other runners, nor was I being constantly passed by faster runners.  I managed to stay with the same people practically the entire run.

I could feel myself getting overheated after about mile 2, so I had to talk myself down and walk a bit.  I will get in to the lack of water on the course in a moment, but…  there wasn’t enough water on the course.  I am curious to see my post-race/finish line photos because I’m sure I look like a sweaty tomato!  After my finish, which I knew was slower than last time, I circled back to watch the finishers. This has become one of my favorite things to do post-race is to watch everyone else cross the finish line.

I had my water bottle with me, two bottles of water at the finish, plus a coconut water, and felt fine until I got home.  Around 11:00, my head was pounding and I was totally nauseous, so I think the day caught up with me.  Finally feeling rehydrated now, though!

Pre-race pick-up:  I was out of town and had to wait until Wednesday evening to pick up my race packet.  The pick-up volunteers were…  less than friendly.  I got my number and went to the bib/t-shirt pick up table to be handed a bib and told there were no shirts in my size.  Apparently, they ran out of small and medium shirts and were not offering replacements.  The person who gave me my bib scrawled initials on the back and told me I could get a shirt on race day, then I was apparently dismissed because he started helping someone else.  Ok, no big deal.  I’ll pick it up after the run tomorrow…

The race was held at the Notebart Museum.  I did the Jingle Bell Run from there, and I am now going to just straight up avoid races that start from there.  It is a disaster!  In this case, gear check was upstairs, and being run by one poor frazzled lady tagging and bagging for everyone.  I wanted to be sure to drop off my stuff and use the bathroom before racetime, so I didn’t get my t-shirt before the race.  <–My BIGGEST mistake of the day!

So, pre-race was just a little annoying because there were so many people.  One benefit The only benefit of having a race start from here is a bathroom with running water!  No pre-race porta-potties!  Anyway, headed out to my start corral, and the race started pretty uneventfully and right on time.

An email went out from the organizers that pointed out the warm weather to all participants.  It said verbatim “The forecast is calling for warmer weather, so please make sure to slow down and stay hydrated. We have added additional water on the course to accommodate for the warmer temperatures.”  Guess how many water stops there were on this course?  TWO.  Guess how many of them actually had water?  ONE.  This actually made me livid.  This is SO dangerous!  The first water stop was just after the first mile, when folks are realizing just how hot it is.  When we made it to the stop, there was an empty table and people attempting to fill one cup at a time from a spout.  It was RIDICULOUS.  I had my own water with me, but as I have learned, I need to drink way more than most folk.  It’s possible that I over-hydrate on just normal days, but whatever the reason, I try to drink as much as I can.  I ended up veering off-course to refill at a water fountain on the path, and kept going.  This does NOT count as adding a water stop!!!

The rest of the course was rather uneventful.  I kept slowing down, and reminding myself that that was ok.  My last stop was the CARA trough which was like…  feet from the finish line, but I’m glad I did.  Because the bottled water at the finish line was HOT.  Not just warm, but hot, like it had been in the back of someone’s car in 100° heat for the past week…

Got inside to a literal ZOO.  There were lines for bathrooms, criss-crossing lines for beer and food, criss-crossing lines for gear-check.  ZERO direction and lots of people just aimlessly standing around, or busting to the front of a line because they have no idea what these masses of people are waiting for.  It was just a cluster.  After 20-25 minutes, I had my bag, and headed to the restroom.  At which point I was chewed out by another volunteer about bringing water to the bathroom.  (My bottle was empty, which I pointed out to him…  *sigh*).

I just wanted to get out of there!  It was totally insane.  The “block party” was on the patio of the museum, but it just looked a hot crowded mess.  So I went to grab my shirt, even though 2 or 3 people said REGISTRATION IS CLOSED.  I found another guy aimlessly wandering around looking for it, and eventually we walked through a set of doors where two gems were waiting for us.  The first thing they both said was CLOSED!  YOU CAN’T GET OUT THIS WAY.  WE’RE CLOSED!

And I said, ok, I just want to get my shirt.  To which the lovely woman said “WHY would I give YOU a shirt??”  Ummmm  hellz naw, lady.  How about because I paid a ridiculous entry fee for a madhouse of a race, and I want the shirt to prove it!  Instead I said “uh.  they ran out at pick up.”  “GIVE ME YOUR BIB.  This doesn’t say ANYTHING.”  Remember, this just has some dude’s initials on it.  Which is what I told her…  “WELL WHAT SIZE?  IT DOESN’T SAY SIZE!!!”  OMG Give me a Medium, then get me OUT OF HERE!  It was just so terrible!  I felt like an inconvenience for every single person working on this race!  So uncomfortable and unnecessarily rude!

Oh well!  It was fun to have company and also to see Claire on the course, who authors Run Fa(s)t Girl, Run.  We met earlier last month at the Do Life meet-up, which was also a total blast!  Next race: Big10k.  CAN’T WAIT!

Update 7/18/2012
Voiced concern with race organizers and they had a nice response. Also…

Sweaty tomato?

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