August 9 & 10, 2013
I first heard about the Double Road Race in an email from Active.com about races in my area. It sounded interesting but I didn’t sign up right away. However after doing the 6-miler in July and not having a half marathon until August 17th, I thought it might be a good “long training run” (especially since I don’t make myself do them!).
This is the first year the event has been in Indianapolis. You can read about the race history here: Double Road Race. One of their tag lines is “The only racing event with a halftime.” Packet pick-up was on Friday at the Rock Steady Boxing location on the northeast side of town. (100 percent of all Rock Steady Boxing donations will be donated to this very worthwhile program fighting Parkinsons.) Although this is not close for me, I’m a total girl and I want to know what the shirt looks like the night before to make sure 1.) that I like it and 2.) what shorts to wear with it. I got there shortly after they had opened and you could tell they were still scrambling a little but I was chill with everything…unlike the nasty lady behind me. I wanted to punch her; she was so rude! After I got my stuff, I walked over and met Bob Schul. He is the only American man to win an Olympic gold in the 5000 meters. He was so nice and allowed me to have my picture taken with him. I didn’t stay and mingle too long since my husband and I had plans for later in the evening.
Me & Olympic gold medal winner Bob Schul!
Got home and laid everything out. I got two shirts; the “official” event shirt and a racing jersey because I had responded to an email that they sent asking me (and everyone else, of course) if we wanted to be part of the Ujena Fit Club race team. It said that all abilities were welcome and the only requirement was that you had to wear THAT jersey on race day. Hey…sign me up. Sadly it was a tank top but not too skimpy so I didn’t feel too grotesque in it. I felt like I had everything in place and was set for the event the next day.
When I got up on Sunday though, I started second guessing whether or not I should be part of this racing team. I thought it was just a “Group Team” and mostly for a photo op but at packet pickup they mentioned something about being in teams of three…and there were potential team prizes…and I didn’t want a team NOT to win because I’m a slow poke. So although I left the house wearing the jersey, I took the other shirt and changed in to it. But then I felt guilty about breaking up a team. UGH! Long story short, I was reassured that morning that it was no big deal and that I should just wear the jersey. However, through all this self-inflicted drama, I forgot to put some body glide on my arms and I didn’t have my cough drops – that I ALWAYS run with so I don’t get dry mouth. I was so completely off my game this morning!
This couple got married the night before the race.
The start and finish line was at the NCAA Hall of Champions. It was open race morning for packet pickup and that meant we also had access to REAL bathrooms. The 10K (which was a 5K loop that you were to run twice) was up first and started on time. The weather was pleasant to start but it began to heat up a little. Much to my surprise, there was NO water/aid station until the 3 mile maker. That fact, along with not having my cough drops was bad news for me. I stopped at that aid station and took in 3 cups of water. Back out and made the loop again. I finished with a much slower 10K than I was hoping for or that I’ve ever had.
Now was the wait for the 5K to start. Shortly after I crossed they announced that it would start in 25 minutes. I quickly went to my car and grabbed a Gatorade that I had packed and my cough drops. Luckily, I parked close. Normally I wouldn’t pay to park but I was pretty sure that it would only be $5 and didn’t think that was too much. (side note: it would end up being $7) I walked back to the NCAA Hall of Champions and went inside to get cooled off. This event has a recovery zone and although I didn’t use it, I could see where all of the super good athletes would take advantage of it. You had to be doing the Double (the 10K and then the 5K) to gain access. They had massage tables, yoga mats for stretching, foam rollers, jump ropes and stationary bikes so that people could stay loose in between the races. Also, the fastest male and female finishers of the 10K were given yellow jerseys to wear during the 5K.
I ate a banana and a GU along with my Gatorade and some water and tried to stay cool (either inside or in the shade outside) and to mostly keep moving. I saw a guy there that I knew and he had finished ahead of me in the 10K. I guess I felt a little zapped at the start of the 5K. Again, I’d never done anything like this before – taking a break in between distances – so I wasn’t sure how I would do. And I guess enough people had “mentioned” their displeasure about only one hydration station during the first race because there was a water station at mile 2 during the 5K. Surprisingly, I passed the guy I knew down the final stretch and finished ahead of him.
I stuck around and watched the kids race, which was a one-miler. I’m not necessarily a “kid person” but it was cute. One of those little beasts did the double (the 10K, then the 5K) and then did the kids one mile race. YOUTH!
She was only 21 months old and it took her F-O-R-E-V-E-R to cross the finish line but it was funny and cute to watch her.
Bob Schul spoke about his experience in the Olympics while they were tabulating the results from both distances so they could give out the awards. Just prior to that I had him sign the booklet they gave us at the expo with his photo on it. It took a really long time for them to calculate and announce the winners. I stayed for most of it. I didn’t place in my age group; surprisingly there were 7 of us. Usually there are only about 3. Everyone got a finishers medal; one side showing the 10K and the other side showing the 5K.
Overall I thought this was a good event. They definitely need to add a water station during the 10K. It would be best at the 1.5 mile marker so that runners would have access to hydration 3 times. And they need to figure out a way to get the results figured out faster. I am tempted to do it again next year…depending on the weather.'
Anyone else done a race like this?