Sunday, January 29, 2012

Freeze Your Thorns Off 5K Race Report!

Freeze your what?  But, I don't HAVE thorns?  He has always been a bit inappropriate on his blog........what body part does he really mean by "thorns"?!?!

Like I said before, not only was the FYTO5K a virtual race with participants around the world, it was also a real life race in Phoenix Arizona.  So, on Saturday, I wore two hats:  A black ski-mask and one of those hard hats with two beers and a straw  Race director and race pacer.  I not only coordinated the in person race I also paced a good friend to a hopeful PR.

Race Director:
Let's be honest.  People can say that they run races for exercise, to look good naked, or to reward themselves after a hard training cycle.  But deep down we all know why people run races:  To be able to pee in public Race medals.  So, the first and most important thing that I needed to do was square away race medals for the race.

I continued with my previous theme of hardware store washers with magic marker. Classy. I like to think the medals I make are sort of like one of those home-made clay ash trays that so many of us made while we were in Elementary / Grammar school. Our parents didn't smoke, but they still thought they were "darling".  By the way.... Why were we making ash trays in art class?!? It is no wonder we're not all chain smokers.

Creating race medals take intense concentration
And booze.  Lots and lots of booze

My one and only attempt at being "artistic".  
I'm just glad that there weren't any baby toys in the background

Race Pacer / Sherpa:
With the medals created, I was able to focus on the real task at hand - pacing a good friend.  On Saturday, I got to the race location about 2 hours early - way before that slightly obese Dunkin Donuts guy was "making the donuts".  Jeff and Suzanne weren't able to run with the primary group but instead were looking to run a bit earlier.  Jeff wanted to run a sub 28:00 (9:00/mile) 5K which even with my sore knee I thought that I could do.
Picture from Christina

The race with Jeff and Suzanne started out FAST.  Really fast.  We were running 8:30ish pace and I had to keep telling Jeff to slow down. So the saying goes "seconds banked in the front only get paid back with interest during the second half of the race" Fortunately, after 1/4 of a mile we started hitting our 9:00s and were off to the races.

By the half, I stopped and marked the turnaround for everyone else and let Jeff go on his own for a bit.  I could tell that he was really pushing really hard to maintain pace but thought that the few moments with his own thoughts might do him well.

By the time I caught up, he had slowed slightly, but was still right on pace for a 8:55/mile finish.  Whenever I pace people I'm never quite sure what to do.  Do you continuously say "good job! You can do it"? Well, if you are supposed to do that, I do it way wrong.  I normally try to ramble on, taking the approach of taking their mind off of the pain.  So, I told the story of my first 5K and how I completely bonked at the end.  It must of worked, because before I knew it, we had finished with a newly minted PR!  Unfortunately though, my knee HURT afterwards.  Doh.  Rest for me for the foreseeable future.

Jeff and Suzanne after their PR! 
Thumbs up for Adam not being a serial killer! (Yet)

Back To Race Directing:
With a quick pat on the ass and a tender embrace, Jeff was on his way and I could focus on getting everyone else where they needed to go.  I finished marking the course with flour (and might have pee'd in the bushes while Christina stood guard) and waited for everyone to arrive.

I'm sure everyone is VERY interested in what I am pointing at

As people started to arrive, there was a bit of confusion about the starting location because the original starting spot was gated off.  Turns out, if you just move the gates to the side, you get yelled at by park rangers.....who knew!?

But, everyone was able to find out where it was and small talk before the start.  Unfortunately, instead of "small talk" my son decided to "projectile vomit" all over the inside of my car RIGHT before the start.  So, in addition to race director and race pacer, I added car detailer to my list of responsibilities for the day.

Everyone at the starting line. 
Don't let anyone fool you, the 50 degree temperatures were "like O.M.G. Super Chilly" :)

But, once I got all of the puke cleaned up, got everyone lined up, I said "READY SET GO!" and everyone started running!!  If only I had that kind of power in my real life. We had runner bloggers, friends of friends, and even family show up to toe the line for 5,000m of the best fun you can have with your clothes on.

The runners ranged from super fast Reid with an 19:06 "easy run" 5K

To my brother in law - who seemed basically just as fast

To the four legged - who still got a medal because.... he ran the race too god damn it!

Overall, the race was a really good time.  I don't think that anyone was out to break any speed records (except for Jeff and Suzanne) but sometimes that isn't what running with friends (or complete strangers) is about.  On Saturday, we all got together and ran 3.1 miles - and had a blast doing it!


Christine said...

I was so bummed that it was too warm to get a frozen snot picture. It was a fun run except for the abnormally warm temp of 31.

Christine said...

I was so bummed that it was too warm to get a frozen snot picture. It was a fun run except for the abnormally warm temp of 31.

upinthecosmos said...

How awesomely fun! It was 20 some degrees during my run but I'm here to report that my thorns are in tact:-)

Losing Lindy said...

50 is sooooo warm!

A said...

CONGRATS TO YOUR FRIEND and his awesome PR! And to you for another successful FYTO5k! :) :)

BabyWeightMyFatAss said...

ohh I'm sorry your knee is a being a pain!
And poor little baby for being sickie. :(

Jen said...

Congrats! I love the fancy medals - job well done!

Mike said...

Very nice that you paced some friends in for a PR. Cool hand made medals and really cool you put on a real race along with your virtual one.

That sucks about the vomit in the car :-(.

XLMIC said...

You're a great friend, a good dad, and evidently quite the race director :) Take care of the knee, man!

pensive pumpkin said...

I get scolded all the time for talking to dogs instead of their people, so I LURVE that you gave the dog a medal.

Congrats on a great race!!!

Rose @ Eat, Drink, and Be Meiri said...

I may be the only person who ran the race who HAS thorns to freeze off.

Andrew Opala said...

Hey Christine, I can send you all the frozen snot pictures you want.

Adam, I'm glad your son helped you on race day. I usually have to projectile vomit for myself. I hope Tiff steps up for the sweat your thorns off this summer and picks up the slack.

Morgan said...

Love this race series and watching it continue to grow!!! Good job buddy!

51feetunder said...

had I known that projectile vomiting was encouraged I wouldn't have tried to so hard to keep dinner down...

Nelly said...

Sounds like great times! Eventually I will be able to participate in one of these virtual 5K races, hopefully I'll be able to do the SYTO one during the summer, haha Looking forward to reading all the reports from people!

runningwithoutborders said...

I think all the people you train should get medals too.

Jus' sayin'.

Oh, and I made a race report too. Just for you, Coach! :)

MotherRunner said...

Dude those medals are sweet. Wish I could have run this one virtually... but I guess I'll wait to show you my mad 5k skills til the SYTO5K..

Indigo said...

Are you kidding me???? There are RACE MEDALS????