Saturday, March 2, 2013

The Color Run!

Have you heard about The Color Run? It's a 5k where you get covered in color at various stations. Their tagline is "The Happiest 5K on the Planet". Since this is my first 5K I can't guarantee their statement, but I'm pretty sure it's pretty accurate.

I've been wanting to do a 5k for, well, years. But something always stopped me. (Me. I stopped myself.) When I discovered the run was going to be in San Fran while I was in the area, I decided to do it. I signed up, paid my registration fee, and told a couple people. This was the most proactive I've ever been in the whole 5K situation. As the time approached, I told even more people. I guess I was setting up accountability for myself. I also think this year of travel, working with Tamara, and simply learning about myself as I've been in California finally put me in a position of feeling like I could do it. Plus, let's be honest: this is not a high pressure situation. The whole goal is to have fun while being active. They welcome all fitness levels, walkers and runners, and anyone willing to have a good time. But as I was driving into San Fran today I couldn't believe I was actually doing this... and as I passed the halfway point I was amazed I was STILL doing it... and as I approached the finish line I was incredibly proud of myself. It was such a significant feeling to know I finally accomplished a goal I'd been thinking about for years. I was also impressed by what my body is capable of doing. It was the perfect way to end my time in California.

So, let's look at the race photos and discuss, shall we?

The requirement is a primarily white top to start. Check!
After reading a few past runners' experiences, I learned that sunglasses were highly recommended to protect your eyes from the powder. This was a great suggestion!! After the first color, my glasses had enough powder on them to cloud my vision. I can't imagine that going into my eyes!
I also wore a bandana to cover my nose/mouth during the powder stations. I didn't want my asthma to stop me, so I took this suggestion from the runners. My inhaler was also quickly accessible in case I needed it. With the bandana, I had zero trouble. There was even a moment where I inhaled at the wrong time, but I didn't have any issues. That might not have been the case if I didn't have some barrier.

I can't even begin to guess at how many people attended the run. There were gobs of people ahead of me and still others behind. I was in "wave 3", but I have no idea how many waves they used. Here's the great thing about it: people are just plain happy. Even after the race when the parking lot was a mess, the attitude was still upbeat and kind.

At the completion of every kilometer, you get covered in colored powder. I mean, it makes sense to celebrate that way, right?

(Thank goodness for the water station! I was getting a bit dry at this point.)
The Finish Line!!! 

You guys, it was so much fun. I'm so glad I did it. If you get the chance, totally do it.

Now, let's discuss what happens after. You're covered and you need to head home... in your car... which may have black interior or white or some such neutral. Some of the powder brushes off, but most of it doesn't. I put a beach towel over my seat, brushed/shook off as much as I could, put my backpack and such in the trunk, and my car looks the same as before the race. I wish there would have been a way to accurately show the coating on my arms. I wondered if I was going to be able to wash it off because I work tomorrow. I just don't think parents want their NICU baby having a stained nurse. I'm happy to report that most of it came off pretty easily. I do have a couple spots that are lightly colored, but I think a second shower will take care of that.

Here are some things you might be pondering:
My tub was not stained or colored in the least.
The color goes all the way through your clothing. All the way. So any unmentionables/undergarments you don't want permanently stained should be avoided.
My shoes are probably "ruined". I haven't tried to wash them yet.
I'm doing laundry tomorrow, so I have no idea how much color will remain on my clothing.

Well, it's time to celebrate today... by packing my apartment. I'm down to 3 days left in CA! Insane in the membrane.

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