Monday, July 29, 2013

Race Review: Color Me Rad 5K, St. Louis Edition

Pre-race, clean and "tattooed"
Shades that were given away and post-race "Larabar"
Best part - nice shirt

First off, let's get the disclaimer out of the way - I was provided with one free entry to the Color Me Rad 5k, location of my choice.  All thoughts and opinions are my own.

I have never done a color run before.  I wasn't sure what to expect.

You know what?  I used to write for the government, so let me give you my bottom line first - at least for the St. Louis edition of Color Me Rad, I would consider attending this again on a free entry only and if I had someone running with me.  Would I pay $50 for it?  Absolutely not.  I am hopeful that other locations have much better experiences.

1. Probably the biggest issue - where was the color?  I did get pretty coated at the finish, but the 4 previous stations barely got me, and I made sure to run right in front of the "bomb squad".

2. No motivation on the course - this was truly a "fun run" in that it was untimed, but seriously, we were at a raceway, with speakers everywhere, and rarely could you hear any music, because it was only being played at the start/finish area.  There were about 10 spectators.  It was just boring.  At first I thought, is this just boring because I am alone?  So I imagined what it would be like if I had a friend there, and no, the answer was still the same.  It was just boring.  Longest 3.1 miles of life.  Greatest highlight - seeing a 4-year-old running alongside his mom.  Super cute.

3. Where was the Larabar? - I double-checked just now, but the race info available online for St. Louis clearly lists Larabar as a sponsor.  As I was driving to the run, 30 minutes from my house, I realized that I had my giant cup of coffee and forgot to grab a banana.  Fantastic.  But, it's okay, I thought, because they will have Larabars.  If you are a fan of these scrumptious bars, you can imagine the disappointment when arriving at the finish to get your tiny Costco-brand granola bar (for the record, I'm not hating on Costco - I was just really disappointed when I thought they would have Larabars).

4. Sunglasses - I did completely appreciate that we were provided with fun shades to wear - otherwise I was planning to run to the Dollar store and grab a throw-away pair that could just get ruined but still protect my eyes from the alleged onslaught of colored cornstarch.  James is now enjoying his new shades.

5. Best part - The momento shirts are really nice.  For one, they weren't unisex, so they actually fit really well.  And two, at packet-pickup, one of the volunteers said that they were running small, and allowed me to try mine on in case I needed a different size.  Mine fit fine, but I thought this was really nice - most of the time, race shirts are unisex, fit women terribly, and are usually too big, and plain white with some graphics.  So, good job to the powers that be at Color Me Rad for at least making a nice momento shirt.

So - there you have it!  I have definitely paid less money for better races, with better snacks/swag.  In fact, I can't think of a single 5K that I have ever paid more than $20 or $30 to run.  As I said, run it again for free, and with someone?  Sure!  Pay for it?  No way.  I'm sorry, Color Me Rad, St. Louis just wasn't awesome.  I'm guessing it was a low turnout, and other cities are probably different.

Happy Monday everyone!