Saturday, May 14, 2016

Hula Hustle 5k Race Report

I did this race last year, and I enjoyed it, so I was psyched to see it was happening again. It was at a different location, but that was okay. Still cheap, still had a medal!

I left home around 5:30 and had a nice, uneventful ride to Orange Park.

It's a little foggy this morning

This year the race was at St. John's Day School,  known as a co-educational independent day school.  Also known as an expensive, private school.  How expensive? Well, after I got home, I decided to look online.  For a child to attend from Kindergarten through graduation, it would cost $218,676!  This is tuition, plus ancillary costs (yearbooks and Digital Resource Fee), Building Fee and required Tuition Refund Plan insurance. This doesn't include the cost of textbooks (yeah, you have to buy them here), a required iPad, approved school uniforms (purchased, of course, from an approved school vendor only) and daily lunches. It does include grade level trips to three different locations: Camp Montgomery, Charelston and North Carolina. Now, don't get me wrong, I'm not a "You're too rich!" hater... if you choose to pay for your child's schooling, more power to you. I, unfortunately, cannot afford it. This is way too rich for my blood!

Anyway, I scored a good spot in a paved lot (rather than closer to the track, which would have been on dirt/grass).  I walked to packet pickup in my flip flops, which was a huge mistake, because I had to walk through a lot of sugar sand.

The other parking area (mine is better!)
Walking towards Packet Pickup - ugh, the sand!
I got my packet and took a quick pic of the finish line, hit up the potties (real potties!) and went back to the car to clean off my feet and change my shoes.

Nice Finisher Arch
I do love a drum line
Once back at the car, and with clean feet, I geared up and headed back towards the start line. I got about 3/4 of the way there before I realized I forgot my bib! 
Many more cars now
So, back I went, grabbed my bib and headed to the start line again. I'm getting really tired of walking through this damn sand!

Pottie Line at 7:30am
Finally, though, I was able to stay at the start line. When I got back there, there was an instructor doing Zumba as a warm-up. After watching for a few minutes, I decided to join in.  Luckily, there is no video of this to prove I joined in!

You can't prove I Zumba'd

Crowds are getting bigger

Pre-Race Selfie

As we got closer to the start time, this nice, young gentleman came out and played the National Anthem on his sax.

It wasn't bad, for sax music

Cool, the pro photog got a pic of me!
Then the race director, and (I guess?) head of Clay County Young Life led us all in prayer, which I thought was wonderful. You don't get a lot of public prayer anymore. 

Please bow your heads
After that, and announcments, we were led by the local high school marching band's drum line to the start line.  

To the start line

However, this turned into a fail because they ended up in our way, and we all had to turn around, because the start line faced the other way (meaning, the fast people - who were in front - were now in the back, and the slow folks were at the front of the pack).

People were passing the drummers because they are impatient

Now, everyone TURN AROUND!
Once that clusterfuck was fixed, we all took off into the beautiful Florida morning.

Here we go!


The first racer passed me before I even got to Mile 1. 

We didn't start on time - he got here in less than 17 minutes

Okay, so.  This girl right here.  Generally, I'm not one to share bad photos of kids because they don't need to be on the internet, but she worked my last nerve.  I was behind her for a lot of the race, and she kept complaining about her clothing.  It's hard to see, but she's wearing a bikini. At a 5k.  Over the bikini she had a nice hula skirt.  Unforntunately, neither the bikini bottom nor the hula skirt fit very well, and I kept seeing pre-pubescent ass cheek.  I was very embarassed for this child, and mad at the mother for dressing her this way. The girl was very uncomfortable in her clothing, and wanted to take off her skirt, but couldn't since she would only be in a bathing suit. I came close to saying something to the mom, when I heard mom say "Well, you chose to wear this, so you need to deal with it!"  I backed off after that, not nearly as mad at mom as I had been. The tone of her voice made me think that she'd argued repeatedly with this child, but the girl was adamant about wearing it, so the mom gave up, and hten today, basically let the girl be miserable to teach her a lesson. Way to go, mom! 

I hope she learned her lesson

Before Mile 1, there was a side road that emptied back into the main course.  This was bad race planning because there were no cones to deliniate where runners should go and I saw multiple fast runners plow into us slow runners at this intersection. Luckily, no one was hurt.

Move, move!

Holy crap, only Mile 1??

Mile 1 only?
Oh, okay, here's Mile 2. Seriously, it's a boring course... Nothing interesting was happening!

Mile 2
At maybe 2.5, we returned to the school, which confused me because we still had a half-mile to run.

I can see the track! Am I done?

Oh, okay.  We had to go up a side road that runs perpendicular to the school track.

Lots of kids drew on the road with chalk before the race

Then we had to cross the large grassy area, near the parking lot.

This isn't bad; I can handle grass

Oh, man!  It's the damn SAND again!!

I. Hate. Sand.

We had to run through the little entrance near the bathroom and then we were on the (really nice rubberized) track at the Day School.  Only 3/4 of a lap to go!

Oh God - gym class flashbacks
Mile 3 was at the 'bottom' of the track.

Yay, Mile 3!

As I came around the final curve, I heard the band director say that they were going to do one more song and then pack up.  While I'm happy that I got a song, it ticked me off - there were still people on the course who would appreciate some finish line music!

Run it in!

Yay, I finished!

Finish Line Selfie!

I stuck around for a bit, grabbed some snacks, but left before the awards.  I went to Chick-fil-A for lunch, walked around the mall, then grabbed 7-Eleven snackage for the road!

I love CFA for post-race lunch - tasty, tasty protein!

And, of course - tasty, tasty carbs! BANANA slurpee!!!!