On February 2, 2013 I participated in my first 5K of 2013! (And, let’s be honest here, my first 5K in years!) Long story short, it was a BLAST! I can’t imagine a better first 5K experience. Un-timed, themed, and silly, this race took all of the pressure I’d been worried about with my first race off of my shoulders and hurled it into the air in a brightly colored mushroom cloud.
The day before the race, I went to pick up registration for my friend and me, and also used that opportunity to pick up a little bit of merchandise for myself. I got this neat wrist cuff, called the Stuff Cuff. Which comes with a built in pocket to hold your money or your keys. The woman at the merchandise table tried to convince me it could hold your phone too, but I don’t really see that happening. At least not with my iPhone; I’m certainly not risking it. If you’re interested in buying one, they’re selling them online here. I also got a really cute pendant necklace that says Color Runner on it. Either of these will be awesome for my goal of wearing something from each race on my body at every consecutive race I do as part of my New Year’s resolution.
Tip: if you’re going to be doing the Color Run, pick up your registration early and use that opportunity to buy color packets if you plan to. We got to our race (which, admittedly, was the second of the day) two hours early and they were completely sold out of them. Better safe than sorry, right?
We also got together to decorate our shirts for the race. (In case you can’t see, she drew sunflowers, and I drew a rubber duck with sneakers and a Color Runner headband.):
We ended up leaving pretty early, and despite stopping for coffee and bagels (Yikes, bad idea alert! Even three hours in advance, those did not sit well!) we got there a full two hours early. Which meant that we had plenty of time for her to do my make up!
We took lots of pictures to document this, because I knew it would be fun to have pictures to compare after the race was over!
We waited around for a few hours and watched the crowds gather as the DJ entertained himself by commenting on some of the ridiculous clothes people were wearing – everything from rainbow tutus and tube socks, to guys in short shorts and pink fairy wings! Until finally, they called us over to start gathering for the first wave! (They released us in waves of 1,000 people because there were something like 10,000 of us in the 2:00 race alone!)
Finally they let us go! My friend and I agreed to meet up after each color throw (at the kilometer marks) to take a picture of the damage. (Don’t worry, I had my phone in a plastic bag so that the cornstarch couldn’t mess it up.)
Tip: remember to keep your mouth closed or actually use your bandana to cover your mouth!
Somewhere between orange and yellow is when my plastic bag started to get really covered in powder, so the pictures got kind of foggy.
The final color throw was pink, but we decided to just wait and take a picture at the finish line.
The final wave was just leaving as we finished up, which meant we were able to get in some post-race photos with the starting line before they took it all down! Way cooler than up close finish line pics if you ask me.
Afterwards we spent about 20 minutes at the post-race party with intermittent color throws. It was fun, but I definitely wouldn’t attempt it without covering my eyes, nose, and mouth. That powder goes everywhere. One group of kids around us got crazy and started shaking up a soda bottle and spraying one another (and everyone around them) with it so that the colors would really soak in. Not so cool.
Before we left to get back in the car, we got dusted off with these giant leaf blowers they had set up. Lots of color came off, but not as much as I would have hoped. Definitely glad we brought towels for the car seats.
Oh yeah, and did I mention that because we were in the second race of the day, there was already a bunch of color accumulated on the ground where the color throws were happening? The blue went through the breathing holes in my Nikes and stained not only my socks, but my feet too!
All in all it was a great experience! If I do it again next year I probably won’t bother with the post-race stuff. It’s the kind of thing that’s probably more fun if you like partying and are with a larger group of friends to mess around with.