Denver Rock N Roll Mini Marathon

Five weeks ago my work sent around an email saying they would pay for anyone to enter the Rock n Roll 1/2 marathon or Mini Marathon. Five weeks wasn’t quite long enough for most of us to train for a 1/2, but a good number of us signed up for the Mini Marathon, a whopping 3.75 miles 🙂

The 1/2, Full Marathon and Mini Marathon all started at the same time and I have only one word for this race: CROWDED.  Let’s start with the bathroom lines. This picture was taken as the horn went off for the people in corral 1 to start running. I had already been waiting FIFTEEN MINUTES.  Yes, you are right that you can’t even see the port-a-potties because the line curves around and continues another 10 people or so. Oof.

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I somehow had been placed in corral 13, but snuck into corral 7 near the front. The first 1/2 mile wasn’t too bad, but then it started bottle necking. I went up on the sidewalk and ran there for a bit and, while looking around to see where I could squeeze back into the pack and then nearly flipped over a wall/bridge barrier that seemed to come out of nowhere in front of me. I stuck to the road after that. This race also had some of the worst race etiquette I have ever seen, with people stopping to tie their shoes in the middle of the road instead of moving to the edge. I was very glad when the mini marathon broke off from the 1/2 and Full, because I could not imagine running a full 1/2 like that.

I didn’t go out there trying to PR anything, especially with such a random distance, but I wasn’t too disapointed with my times. Definitely would have been nicer to have a bit more free space and less running into people.

Image We were rewarded with delicious Michelob Ultra’s at 8am. Because that’s exactly what you want at 8am, right?

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Overall, it was a great way to start my sunday morning with some people I like hanging out with ( I’m pretty lucky to have some awesome coworkers). I think doing a physical activity together is a great way to bond with people. I also love the fact that my company was encouraging people to be active and fit. My kinda place!

Do you like being active with friends?

Has your work ever sponsored some type of race/physical activity?

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Hot Chocolate 15k (1:25.22)

I’ve been waiting to post this until pictures from the race came out so I could add one of them. Turns out all the ‘hands up victory’ poses I did got missed and one of me dying was nicely captured. Isn’t that always the case? Needless to say, there will be no actual race pictures.

Sunday I decided to go run 9.3 miles with over 2,000 of my closest friends for the Hot Chocolate 5k/15k Denver Race. I was incredibly nervous, as I have only ran over 6 miles about 5 times in the past year… and that includes the Tough Mudder last year.  I was scared I was woefully undertrained and my stomach was in knots during my early drive down to the Denver. The 5K started at 7 am, with the 15K starting at 7:50. It was a bit of a chilly start.

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Some people went as far as to stand over the sewers so the steam would heat them (I was not that desperate). The first mile went by really quickly as we ran through the Downtown Denver area, including past my office! I saw a man in front of me running with the strangest stride. The best way to describe it is that he looked like he had moon boots on, with his feet super wide and bouncy. But he was around the same “pace” as I was,  so I decided Mr. Moonboots and I were going to be pace buddies.

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This lasted until mile 5, when I tried to be super cool and look like a pro runner, grab a gatorade, and drink it mid-stride.  I then proceeded to choke, stop, sputter and cough When I looked up Mr. Moonboots had gotten quite far ahead. So, I took up following Ms. Peacock-Tights instead. This is how I entertain myself during long runs. I know, it’s weird.

Half way through mile 7 I started dragging, thinking how much I wanted to stop and walk. A long hill didn’t help. I kept thinking about Janae’s slogan “It’s rude to count people as you pass them… out loud” . This was not because I was passing people, but because I kept getting passed and wondered how many of them were counting me. Mile 8, I decided to pick up the pace a bit, I thought I had more in me and I wanted to finish strong. I started pumping my arms, stretching my legs, felt myself getting a little faster….and watched a 90 year old man, half bent over, breeze on by me.

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I had tunnel vision by the time I entered the shoot. I didn’t even look for my boyfriend and coworker (who had run the 5K and had stayed to cheer me on with a sign her adorable daughter had made me!). I was a little bummed I didn’t break the 9 minute mile barrier (my tracker said 9:01), but I hadn’t expected to even get that with my lack of long run training. My GPS recorded the course as 9.49miles, but that was probably due to my bobbing and weaving. Afterwards we got hot chocolate and chocolate fondue, with pretzel, crackers, a banana, and marshmallows to dip in it!

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The race was SUPER well organized, with a wide open course and digital clocks at each mile marker for those who didn’t have a GPS. They had water stations every mile, and I three or four bathroom stations too. I think it may have been the best organized race I have ever done.  My coworker and I are already trying to decide which one we want to do next!  Race fever, baby!

Tap N’ Run 4k – Time to get Tapped

This past Saturday I got tapped. 4 times actually. It was hot out, it lasted about 30 minutes and by the end all I wanted was more.

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Of course, I’m talking about the Tap N’ Run 4k event, a fun run event that involves beer, “running” and may be coming to a city near you soon (definitely not Paleo, but good for the soul nonetheless).  I had told my friends our theme should be jungle animals, but then proceeded to make a cow costume. What, you’ve never heard of the rare jungle cow? Yah, me neither…

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Good thing they were adaptable. They showed up dressed as cowboys, complete with cattle prods, and without even realizing it we had worn the perfect Colorado wild wild west costume.  The costumes at the race were amazing, ranging from a group dressed up as Pacman and blinky/inky/whatever the rest of them are called to sharks from shark week.  When the countdown finished and we were signaled to go we drank our 1/2 a beer, dramatically threw our cups on the ground and were off! To give you an idea of the type of “running race” this was, take a look at these two guys who rented bikes half way through from the lovely bike rental stations in Denver that lined part of the course.

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It was definitely very clear that this was an event that was solely to have fun with your friends, not to really attempt to race. I was perfectly fine with that and enjoyed the two “tap” beer stations along the way. When we reached the finish line there was a DJ and an after party, which we only ended up staying at for about 25 minutes due to the ominous rain clouds in the previous picture finally breaking.  It was definitely a different and fun experience. If you like beer, costumes, and running I would recommend trying it if it comes to your city. PLUS, they give out bottle openers as medals. win!Image