I took the day off from blogging yesterday while I rested my legs and caught up on some much needed calories after a 5-mile race at the 17th Annual Betty’s Run for ALS! But today, I’m here to tell you all about it!
First off, the race package was nothing less than snooze-worthy: race bib, an instruction sheet, and a plain cotton t-shirt that I will probably never wear again…. Race package pickup was straightforward, but it was downtown at Eau Claire Running Room which I always find to be a bit of a pain just because A) it’s downtown and B) I have to pay for parking. I suppose for anyone who works downtown, it’s probably swell.
I expected the race to be a lot smaller than it was. I was surprised to show up race morning and see so many people and kids and dogs and strollers…all of my least favourite things, when it comes to race day… But luckily, the vast majority of that crowd was doing the 5k walk, which started half an hour earlier than us, and went on a slightly different path. Pre-race festivities were fun: fiddlers, food, and…Star Wars?! Yep, there was a good handful of Star Wars characters around to take photos with. I have no idea what this had to do with the race…but it made for a good laugh all the same!
The course was nice – I haven’t run in Glenmore Park before, which is strange, considering how close it is to my house. There was a pretty significant downhill around km 3, which came back to bite your quads when you re-encountered it at km 6 on the return route. Buuuuut, I LOVE hills (sadistic? – maybe a little!) so I was OK with that. Luckily, no race course problems like Princess Lisa had this weekend – my Nike app tracked 4.9 miles, but I accidentally paused it for a minute or two, so seems to be pretty bang on, to me.
I finished in 51:43, which I thought was OK, considering I really haven’t been running much lately. Based on last year’s best times, a good, trained pace for me would have had me finishing right around 49:00, so I was about 30 seconds per mile off of last year’s pace. I know I have lots of time to make up that ground before my fall Half this year, so I’m pretty content with that.
One complaint unrelated to the race, but very relevant to my own day was my choice of clothing. It was overcast in the morning so I chose (wisely, I might add) to wear a jacket. When in Florida for the Princess Half earlier this year, I scored a great deal on a ronhill rip zip jacket – it quickly converts from a jacket to a vest, and the sleeves pack into a back pocket. Plus, it’s black and pink…I’ll never turn down anything pink! Happily, the sun came out around km 2, and I tore off my sleeves. Unhappily, around km 5 I felt this pinching feeling under my arms…something was chafing! So today, I am stuck with some yucky red marks on my underarms. Other than that, the attire performed beautifully, but maybe requires some preventative Bodyglide or bandaids next time.
Post-race was great, once I got some food in me. I was pretty grumpy at the finish line though: lots of people crowding the area, and no water being handed out. I did eventually get water, but I had to stand in a line about 50 people deep to get to it. I don’t know about you, but I like to chug half a bottle of water right away after I finish. The fact that I had to wait for what felt like an hour…but was probably more like 10 minutes…to get water was annoying. Once I finally got to the food though, it was all good. They had BBQ hotdogs and hamburgers, juice, fruit, pastries, and my personal favourite for the day – mini donuts!!
Overall, I would give this race a recommended rating. It’s well-established, race fees were very reasonable, and you got good value for your money. Yes, the race package wasn’t stellar, but it did include chip timing, the food was good, the course was lovely, and the people were incredibly uplifting. A few details could have been better, but they weren’t dealbreakers for me, and so you’ll see me back at this one again next year.
If you were at the Betty’s Run for ALS yesterday, what was your impression? Would you run it again?