Sunday, July 5, 2015

Freedom 5000 Race Recap

A day late here, but HAPPY 4TH OF JULY everybody!!!  I hope and trust that you all had a great time gathering with friends and family, BBQing, boating on the lake, floating down a river, playing sports, watching fireworks, whatever it is that you do to celebrate the independence of our country.  Last year I started a new tradition for myself when I found the Freedom 5000 5K(ish).  I say “ish” because last year it was 2.95 miles and this year it was right at 3 miles.  It’s not a USATF sanctioned event and I don’t really care either way, anyway.  It’s fun.  I get to dress up in the stars and stripes and run with other people that are equally as patriotic.  I wore a hat this year, something new I’ve been doing when I run.  I went out and found a stars and stripes ball cap.  It wasn’t exactly what I was looking for, but I worked just fine.
I hadn’t really felt all that great for the days leading up to the race (allergies/cold/who knows), so I had absolutely no expectations for this race as far as time.  I just wanted my usual plan B to happen: don’t walk if I don’t have to.  Other than a nice little bottleneck at the first pass of the water stop (it’s an out-and-back course, so you pass the same water stop twice) where I had to actually come to a complete stop, I ran the whole thing.  I hit the 1-mile mark and my Garmin buzzed and showed that, even with the complete stop, I completed the mile in 9:58.  Whoa!  I was not expecting that time at all!  My second mile was 10:10.  Still doing great.  3rd mile was 10:19.  Also a great time.  On top of not feeling so great in the days leading up to the race, I completely sucked at hydrating the day before the race and I’m very sure that had something to do with how I felt the morning of the race.
This race is fairly small and kind of low key.  It’s not advertised at all, so far as I know.  When I found it last year, I went on Google and searched “4th of July race in Austin, TX.”  It was the ONLY race in the area.  It’s reasonably priced, but there’s really not much to it.  You get a nice, screenprinted cotton shirt.

The bibs are generic, which is a great disappointment to me.  I really don’t think that a custom bib of some sort would be that much of a larger expense for them and, honestly, I would pay $5 more for the registration fee for a custom bib.  They also don’t have a photographer on the course or even at the finish line, which is a huge disappointment.  Even more than the no custom bib.  But, there are loads of volunteers that are more than happy to snap a pic of you with your cellphone for you.  Sure, it’s not a shot of you running (however, I’m sure if you asked nicely and maybe even slipped them a 10, that they would snap you as you crossed the finish line with their own phone and then text it to you…or you could find someone else that was there spectating their friend or family member and wouldn’t mind also keeping an eye out for your finish as well so long as you have a similar pace).  Anyway, the lady took a very good pic of me so that I had something to include in my scrapbook page.

As I was talking to the volunteer who took my pic after she took said pic, she told me about the Thin Mint Sprint.  It’s a 5K and a 10K.  It’s $35 until September 1st when the price goes up (to what I don’t know…sorry).  But, I fully intend to sign up for the 10K of this race.  From what I gather, it benefits the local Girl Scouts.
Anyway, this is a recap about the Freedom 5000, not a promotional post.  Haha.
One good thing about no professional photos and I have someone take my photo for me with my cellphone is I don’t have to wait a few days up to 2 weeks for the official photos to be posted/emailed out/made available for purchase.  What does that mean?  It means I can do my scrapbook page for the race the same day as the race and that I can post my recap sooner!

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