2017 WABA CommUnity 5K

Here's another delayed race report. In late June I ran the WABA CommUnity 5K, a local neighborhood 5K on the West Side of Columbus. This was a tiny little race with only 30 or so participants in the 5K. They also had 1K and 3K races, which were mostly attended by families with kids and walkers.

Me, Sunshine and Ray before the race

I decided to do this race because it was very close to home, and two friends from the Columbus Westside Running Club would be there too. It started near the Giant Eagle on W. Broad Street and was an out & back heading West on Broad, turning off to Westland High School, and then back to the start. It was going to be a hot day, but it wasn't too bad when we started. Sunshine lined up in front, and Ray, who walks, lined up behind me.

Sunshine, before she kills it

As soon as we started, I felt the very slight uphill incline. It wasn't steep at all, but I noticed it and I felt sluggish. My original plan was to actually push myself at this 5K and see how well I could do, but I knew almost immediately that I wouldn't be able to go as fast as I wanted. There was no shade, and the asphalt on Broad Street was hot. We reached the 1K turnaround point and I kept going. We reached the 3K turnaround point and I kept going. Then we made the turn that would take us to the High School. As I was nearing the school, I saw Sunshine coming back. She was in the lead! And not just as the female lead, but as the overall lead. There was another fast woman behind her, but not extremely close. The second half of this race looked promising for Sunshine!

Sunshine on her way back
Ray nearing the halfway point

I turned into the school and got to the halfway point. Then very near where Sunshine had passed me, I passed Ray. He's a walker, and was doing well in relation to the other walkers. At about this point I realized that I was playing leapfrog with a female runner that I've seen at several local races this year. Because I keep running into her, I had been meaning to say hi. We are very close in pace, but because I do run/walk intervals, she often passes me when I'm walking and I pass her when I'm running. It seemed like every time she got close to me or passed me, my watch interval told me to run again. I made it a point to tell her briefly that I wasn't trying to one-up her, that I was simply minding my intervals. Eventually I passed her for good, as the last mile was a slight downhill grade and I went faster.

Sunshine was waiting for me when I crossed the finish line. She won the race! We chatted for a few minutes, and then I wanted to go find the woman I kept passing on the course, but she went straight from the finish line to her car and drove off. Maybe another time I'll see her and say hello.

Just crossed the line

I drank some water and waited with Sunshine for Ray to finish. He earned a 5K PR for his performance. Great stats for our run club buddies. As for myself, I wasn't as fast as I wanted, but I finished in 9th place overall. Of course, my positioning was due to the fact that there was a tiny field for this race. Even if I hadn't been in the top 10, I still think I had a good race, once I got over my initial sluggishness in the first mile.

Medal and shirt - not bad for this tiny race

And that's about all there was to this race. We got a decent t-shirt and a basic medal, which were fine for an inexpensive neighborhood race. Post-race food was bananas, granola bars and water. There would be a parade a little bit later on Broad Street, and the high school bands were arriving and getting organized in the parking lot. We thought that it would have been nice if they'd come a little earlier and played for the race participants...at least a drum line. Maybe next year. And maybe next year the race committee will do a little more publicity. I think they could have gotten more people out for the race with some additional effort. If not...hey, show up and run even marginally fast and you, too can place in the top 10 next year!


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