Here it is, the big finish. 1:13:54. A time I’m actually pretty darn proud of considering that even right up until the race I was still dealing with the physical impact of a cold/flu something or other. I kept a pretty steady 23 minute mile and would have actually came in at 22 minute mile if the race organizers had placed bathrooms at the beginning of the race instead of the middle. But overall, I have few complaints about this particular organized race. Beyond the t-shirt issue which I mentioned in my last post, this race proved to be quite size friendly. The route is probably one of the flattest routes. I think they call it the fastest marathon route because it is all flat. As it happened, it was a day where a heatwave was predicted, however, the tall buildings downtown San Jose, mostly blocked the sun from beating down on us. My friend Kim walked the route with me. She’s a great “cheerleader” to have enroute with me because she’s learning when to push me and when just to hang out and be present, which is great because at this point in my 5K walks, I need both.
Following the race, I got a cold beer (at 9am) and then we stood in line to get our medal ribbons signed by 49er Roger Craig. Well worth the wait! He thought I’d been through the line twice for some reason and I told him he just thought that because I was so memorable he was thinking about me before he even met me. He agreed.
Overall, this particular 5K was a much improved experience than prior events. I will definitely do this event again and look for others that are similarly organized. I’ve written to the organization about their need to provide larger shirts, place bathrooms at the beginning of the race (since we have to line up so dang early), and how the health and fitness expo is exclusionary of several groups of individuals and race participants should not be made to walk through it. I’ve also written to the organizers of the race I walked in April about the issues there and I hope to see a change in their practices come this April.
I have a friend who seriously offered to help organize a size friendly 5K in Portland, and I definitely want to do this. But I think its important for me and other people of size to keep showing up and keep expecting that all these other organized races are places where we can all participate and feel comfortable doing so. I’ve yet to pick out the next 5K to participate in, if you have suggestions, let me know.
Here are some additional photos from the Rock n Roll 5K, San Jose October 4, 2014.
Kim likes a good photo bomb (who doesn’t really?):