If you know me, you know how much I hate running. The joke at the gym is I opened up a CrossFit gym so I didn’t have to run.
Having been peer-pressured to run a 5k on Thanksgiving I couldn’t help but observe what was taking place. Firstly, I was shocked by the number of people at the race. Over 3,500 people had registered to run. There were people everyone. I couldn’t recall one moment of the race where I wasn’t stuck in traffic.
After the race, I noticed some peculiar things that took place that I wanted to share…
95% of the people never warmed up
After meeting up with one of my coaches, the first thing we discussed was how we were going to warm up. Because there were people everywhere we had to get creative. We found a spot in the bank drive-through were we performed dynamic stretches and body weight exercises. Looking around, I could count on two hands other people attempting to warm up. For the other 95%, they didn’t seem to care.
At our gym, we are very adamant about teaching people how to run properly. Like the deadlift, there are mechanics involved in running that must be applied in order to run efficiently and safely. The majority of people I saw did more of a shuffle than a stride or they were landing on their heels so much I was surprised their knees didn’t burst. I don’t think it a coincidence that running has an overall yearly incidence rate between 37 and 56%.
The first thing I thought about at the finish line, while gasping for air was where I was going to cool down. I needed to cool my core temperate down and stretch out my legs. I was able to find an abandon parking lot off to the corner and in those 15 minutes, I didn’t see one person trying to do the same thing.
The race was a mob from start to finish, it felt more like survival than leisure, especially with a stroller. I understand that many people running the course were very inexperienced but simple things like alerting the person ahead of you that you are “passing”, or staying to the right if you were a slower runner would have helped the congestion immensely.
No love for dads with strollers
I joked on social media after the race that a mom in a double stroller outran me and I was proud of it. Unfortunately, parents with strollers get no love. Weaving in and out of traffic was hard enough but having to do it with a stroller made it much harder. They should have taken at least 5minutes off our final times for accomplishing such a feat!
All and all I had a great time. But as a coach and business owner, I can’t help but view things from the outside. As a coach, I was looking for ways people can become better runners and as a business owner how event coordinators could provide a better way to organize their races.