Catch Up: Universal Studios 5k (December 4, 2011)

January 20, 2012

Aurora giving a little happy pose after the Universal Studios Say No to Drugs Race 2012

As I’ve said before, I started this string of running events 7 weeks before I started the blog, so I have a little catching up to do…

The Say No to Drugs race was my first 5k! Little did I know this was the beginning of quite a large adventure that I never saw coming.

This is a sweet 5k!

They don’t give medals (but they do give dog tags). So I almost didn’t do this race (since I have that whole “I only run for medals!” rule). However, I made an exception because of the wonderful course – running through Universal Studios’s backlot.

Packet pick-up was the morning of the race (as it totally should be with 5ks (and possibly even other distances)), but alas, there was no gear check. So I carried the bag with my shirt and goodies throughout the course (the plight of not having a car in Los Angeles).

As I said, the course was bomb! We ran through Wisteria Lane, by Amity Boat Tours, around a bunch of other sets, and even through a plane crash! A lot of people (including me) chose to go slowly and take pictures – basically being more of a tourist than a runner.

the plane crash in the backlot at Universal Studios Hollywood during the Say No To Drugs Race 2012
going through the plane crash

(Of course it wasn’t necessarily that I was completely “choosing” that, so much as I was partly choosing that, and it was partly chosen for me due to my out of shape-ness.)

The very first part of the race was all downhill so I thought “oh, this’ll be easy.” Of course the last part of the race was all uphill. So that was…super fun.

In the second mile, I noticed a woman behind me who was plugging away as best she could, but I thought she was someone I could beat. Now, I am all for runners being supportive of each other, and I think every person on the course is a champion. I also really believe that in every race I’m only racing myself…

But, I also believe that I’m competitive to sometimes, maybe, a teeny bit of an unhealthy degree (as if that’s even possible, right?).

My new goal became just to outrun this random woman. She was really putting forward some effort at certain points, but if she would go from walking to jogging, so would I. If she would go from jogging to running, so would I.

At first I was nervous about the big, final uphill battle, but the hill was besting her too. She was starting to fall behind. We came to a part with some tight-ish curves, so I couldn’t see people who were too far behind me. I thought “I did it! I’m going to come in before this lady!”

Aurora giving a little sly face at the Say No To Drugs Race at Universal Studios Hollywood 2012Then I realized that the 5k and 10k veered off from each other near the finish, and being that I didn’t see her again, I think she was actually doing the 10k. It looks like she beat me by the sheer fact that she was doing twice the distance. Wah wah.

I was pretty stoked that there was a bloodmobile at the finish line. I had never given in a bloodmobile – just in hospitals or stand alone donation places. I thought it was a great idea to encourage people to give right after a race. Giving blood made my good feelings about the day multiply (by a whole lot)!

All in all, it was a super fun race that I highly recommend!

I'd love to hear from you! So whaddya say?