One of the local high schools put on a Diva 5K Run. Madison and I decided to sign up and run it together. Race information said it was an all female race (ok, well there were a couple of men who dressed as ladies and snuck in) and you even received a tiara and a boa toward the end. What could be better than that?
After a week of beautiful afternoon temperatures, we woke up race morning to cold and rain and wind. LOTS of wind. Luckily, this race wasn't until 4:00pm, so maybe it would warm up. If only we could have been so lucky.
The overcast doom of the morning did give way to sunshine, but the wind stayed at gusts of 20-30mph and the temps stayed in the high 50s and low 60s. The temp was perfect for a 5k, but not with the wind.
Madison and I had ordered matching outfits - hot pink running skirts and a matching top. Afterall, this was a DIVA race and we needed to look the part. We did decide that with the wind, we would wear an UnderArmour top underneath.
Once we got to the race site, we headed toward the start. We tried to stay warm, but it was just impossible. We lined up at the front of the pack. This wasn't necessarily on purpose, but no one else seemed to want up front. We just hoped that someone who knew where they were going would pass us real quick. The start of the race was in the football stadium, but after that we weren't sure. Since this was the first year for this race, I wasn't sure how clearly the course would be marked.
Once the horn blew for us to take off, it didn't take long at all for us to get passed by a few people. In fact, the one woman that really jumped out front stayed out front the whole time and eventually won the race.
We ran around the track and out of the stadium onto the school grounds. Most of the race was weaving around the parking lot and around the school. There was one little section where we went onto a neighborhood street, but then we were right back in the parking lot again.
The race course itself wasn't bad, but the winds proved to be brutal. Especially when they were in your face going uphill. I started to get hot about a mile in and wished we hadn't worn the long sleeves. Plus, with it being a 4pm start and Dalton having a soccer scrimmage at 12:00, I never really ate lunch, so I was feeling that as well.
The one and only water station wasn't until mile 2, which I thought was a little far into the course. This is one thing I have to admit could have been done better. They had the tiny cups instead of the bigger ones and they had them FULL. You couldn't pinch the top together to keep the water from spilling. Because of that, I ended up with water up my nose and not a lot of it in my belly where it needed to be. Oh well, I had to keep going to keep up with Madison who was doing very well.
Onward through the parking lot and back toward the start. About a 1/4 mile out, we were handed our tiara. I tried to put it on, but doing that while running proved to be difficult, so I just carried it. At the next corner we were handed our boa. I quickly wrapped that around my neck so it wouldn't fly away. And then, as we entered the stadium again, we were handed a rose. It was a little tricky running the last bit with all of that, but I made it to the finish line.
Madison beat me by about 20 seconds. I still can't find the "official" results from the timing company, but I estimate her time around 26:40, because my time was right at 27:00. There were not a lot of people who finished before us, so we decided to stay and see if either of us placed. At one point they posted "unofficial" results on a bleacher. It appeared that Madison got 3rd in her age group and around 14 overall, and I got 7th in my age group and 21st overall. Dang, I hate my age group!
We had to wait about an hour before the awards ceremony, which I thought was way too long. And because the wind still hadn't died down we were freezing again. We huddled as best we could to keep warm. And when they got to Madison's age group, she did indeed get 3rd. Not bad for her first official 5k.
Overall it was a great day. There are things that need to be improved upon (earlier water station, water at the finish, awards sooner, etc), but for a first year race they did a good job. We had fun and that was what mattered.