Location: The Bluestone, Columbus, OH
Distance: 4 miles
Gimmick: Well, this is supposed to be a Cinco de Mayo race, but this is the same company that does Cap City, which was 5/7, so they made it Cinco de Julio this year. I think the theme was hot?
This was, by far, the worst race I ever run. On our way home, we saw a temperature display that said 90 degrees. I know the race organizers can’t control the temperature, but who actually thinks a 6 PM race in July is a good idea? I think this would have been a lot better at 8 PM or in the morning. Or in May when it is normally scheduled. Or in June when it was scheduled originally.
The real problem, though, is that the course had no shade and there was only one water stop at mile 2. This was made even worse by the fact that there was no cold bottled water left by the time I finished. I know I finished towards the end, but that’s still totally ridiculous in this heat.
The course was an out and back in downtown Columbus. Somewhere around mile 1, we saw a woman screaming out her car window at the traffic officer because he wouldn’t let her turn while there were runners on the course. I almost died laughing, although I heard later that some woman actually did ignore the officers and scared some of the other runners. I do think the race had a lot of traffic cops, which was really good and totally necessary.
At mile 2ish, LeDawn and I stopped to walk through the water station. When we started to run post-water, we realized that we were both way to injured and hot to run the whole race. We walked about 1.5 miles and then did an 11-12 minute mile until the end. Our fingers were massively swollen and the lack of cold water really, really sucked, especially since I heard from someone else that the bartenders at the Bluestone were refusing to serve water unless we paid for it. Water should be free after a race. Actually, water should be free period if people are willing to drink tap water.
Ledawn’s husband, David, met us at 3.75ish with water, which was really cool! I’ve never had someone run me in, but this time I definitely needed it. Husband claimed he is going to try running in the car on the way to the race, so maybe he can run with me for some of these crappy races.
So, this is my first race I’ve ever had to walk and it made me feel crappy. I’m ok with being slow, but I’m really not ok with feeling like I can’t run. I heard later that almost everyone took a walk break because of the heat, but it still bugs me. I’m glad LeDawn and I got to hang out, though, and I’m glad I didn’t die of heatstroke.
This race at least had medals, although they say “Cinco de Mayo” on them, which kind of bugs me. Someone on Facebook said the medals are recycled from last year (there is a 2011 on them, but it looks like it could have been soldered on later). Husband says that I’ll be glad to have the medal later once I’ve had time to not be miserable and upset (I think I might be more than a little bit hormonal right now).
So, I think I screwed up hydrating (again). This time I ODed on the sodium (Gatorade and Nuun before the race, a salt pill at the beginning, an energy gel in the middle and Nuun during the race). My fingers usually only swell like that if I eat too much salt. I was confused by the time of day and the heat and tried to overcompensate. Also, I had a migraine from dehydration from being outside earlier in the day and I was trying to make it go away. Can someone please tell me how to stop screwing this up?
Editor’s Note: I wrote this last night while still very emotional and upset. I’ve decided not to change it, because I really did feel this way and I am still quite upset about the water situation. That’s really unsafe and poor planning on somebody’s part. I’ve normally had great experiences running races with this company, but this particular race was not up to their usual standards.