October 5, 2013
Team: Loco Lights
5K Run (non timed)
I really wanted to love this fun run. I had seen advertisements for it on running websites before registration opened during the late spring. I love electronic dance music and I love running. This 5K would combine my two loves for me. Perfect! So I sent in my email address to be notified when registration opened. Once it did, I immediately registered and ordered extra glow sticks and glow glasses. How could I not? This would be really fun right?
A few months after I registered, one of my dear friends, Pins, announced her wedding date. The same evening as the Electric Run. Damn how am I going to swing this? Oh well, I have a few months to decide what to do. The week before the run and the wedding, I decided to sell my bib to my friends that were also planning on registering. I found a friend that would take my bib but that same day I received an email that I had won two additional entries for the run. Is the universe trying to tell me something? Apparently the universe was telling me that I should still run it. So I decided that I would still go to the wedding but leave early enough that I could make the run.
The morning of the run I ran 10 miles with my friend Leslie and it rained the entire time. But I love running in the rain so I didn’t mind it. The wedding started at 6:30 and it was an outdoor wedding. As soon as we got there it started down pouring. Luckily, they had a backup plan and they moved the ceremony into the tent where the reception would be. I was getting antsy because I wanted to stay at the wedding to celebrate but knew I had to leave at 7:15 to make it back downtown for the run to start at 8:00pm. Bryan and I had brought our clothes with us so we could change in the car. I kept checking the Electric Run website and my email to see if they delayed the run due to weather, but nothing was posted. I would hate to leave the wedding early to find out the run was delayed or canceled.
The wedding was beautiful despite the rain and I was so happy for my Pins. It broke my heart a little to leave early, but I had already made my decision, or the universe made it for me. So Bryan and I raced out of there and changed in the car. We got to the fairgrounds exactly at 8:00pm for the start. We ran up to the start and found our friends in line. And then we waited… for 45 minutes! Say what? At this point it had stopped raining so let’s get this run started! Nope instead the run was delayed by 45 minutes. No posting on their website and no email to notify runners. I was pissed. I could have stayed at the wedding for 45 minutes longer if I had been notified. So that set the tone for the rest of the run. While waiting at the start it started pouring again! Heavy rain, wind, and cold temperatures. We were all freezing and soaking wet. I don’t understand. If you are delaying the run due to weather then why make us wait in the rain getting wet and cold when we could just run the 5K and been done since we are in the rain regardless? We could have been finished before it had even started raining again if it had started at 8:00pm like it was supposed to! Poor execution by the Electric Run staff.
Finally after waiting 45 minutes in the rain, wind, and cold we started. But we weren’t exactly running. Everyone in front of us was walking. What? This is a 5K run, not a 5K walk. It’s called the Electric Run not the Electric Walk. This was very frustrating. I wanted to run and get warm. We literally had to weave in and out of people just to jog a slow 12:00/mile pace. At one point our friend Sam used his stroller with his baby to get people out of the way. He cleared the path for us. It was hilarious watching him weave in and out of people. The event organizers should have made the right side of the course for walkers and the left side of the course for runners. This was the first non timed 5K that I’ve done that made it difficult to actually run and I’ve done a lot of 5K’s and fun runs.
Third, some of the electric tunnels that we were supposed to run through were on the grass and the grass was muddy and wet from the rain so they were closed off. Why wouldn’t they have set up the electric tunnels over the pavement regardless of the rain because 90% of the run was on pavement anyways? Another poor choice by event organizers.
Finally once we started running and getting warmed up, I could enjoy the electric lights and décor around the state fairgrounds. The set up was immaculate. You could tell there was a high production cost of putting this run together. My favorite part was the electric colored umbrellas hanging above us. They were so pretty and I was mesmerized by them.
The rest of the “run” was stop and go. Run for a few minutes and then walk due to the congestion of walkers in front of us. Run again and then walk. So it wasn’t much of a run. At this point I was tired of being wet and cold and just wanted the run to be over. At the end of the race there was a stage set up with a DJ and EDM music and a good majority of the participants stayed and danced. There was also a bar set up for people to get drinks. Again this could have been an awesome run and event. We left after the run to get warm and get dinner. Since we left the wedding early, we missed dinner and were starving. Naturally, we went to McDonalds for my fave 6 pc nugget, fries, and snack size M&M McFlurry.
Again I really wanted to love this run and it could have been fun. Bryan, being an event planner for a living, suggested they should have had separate waves for runners based on age and speed of the runners. For example, the first wave at 8:00pm could have been for families with young children and walkers. A second wave at 8:30 for people that would do a mix of running and walking. And finally a third wave at 9:00 for people that would be running and staying later for drinking and dancing at the electric concert after the run. This made total sense! Also, the weather put a major damper on the run, which obviously can’t be controlled. As I mentioned earlier, I love running in the rain, but this was a cold downpour of rain. At the end of the day, at least we got to hang out with our friends Sam, Kizzy, and their baby Miles (he won his age group for 4 month olds) and got a few extra miles on my legs in preparation for my upcoming marathon. In the future, I’ll probably stay away from non timed 5K fun runs and stick to the timed longer runs.