One of the unfortunate side effects of losing my job a couple of years back was the immediate stoppage of running events. No 5k, 10k or half marathon for me or the family.
This drought came to an end with the Halloween run put on a couple of weekends ago by our friends at renegade racing. My mother in law had knee surgery earlier in the year and set her recovery goal of walking/running the 5k at this event. We ran it a couple of years ago and really enjoyed it. So we all signed up for this year’s event and let me tell you, like every renegade event before it, it did not disappoint.
I did not really train for the event, and knew the 5k would be a nice way to get back into running. My nephew who is 9 signed up last-minute for his very first ever 5k so I thought I would be with him (or trying to keep up) and new mom and mother in law would be with our little guy in the jogging stroller (which he barely still fits in).
Or at least that was the plan.
The course is at Salt Creek beach in Dana point, the start/finish line overlooks the ocean. It feels like it is not flat, but the elevation change isn’t as great as you would think.
We got to the park, got our gear together and made our way to the starting area, the weather was perfect for a morning run, overcast and just a bit of a chill in the air.
When the gun went off, my nephew was off like a shot, but our little guy wanted to run as well and *poof* he was off. I thought I was going to be chasing a 9-year-old, not my 5-year-old. So off I went.
Although it was not the plan, it worked out GREAT! Xavier would sprint/walk and I got to do the entire first mile with just him and I (my nephew was ahead of us, but never too far ahead, I could see him most of the time). Another memory that I will cherish for years to come, the two of us, hand in hand walking then running the course.
Eventually the little guy tuckered out and new mom and mom in law caught up to us and he got in the jogger to rest. I was then able to run up to the nephew and run/walk in the finish with him. I am thankful I got to run in his first 5k together, more memories.
We then waited at the finish for new mom and company, and I saw them coming down the stretch, but our little guy was not in the jogger. I looked closer and he was tearing down the finishing stretch running full speed! I got great pics of him crossing the finish line!! Later, new mom would tell me that as soon as he saw the finish line, she asked if he wanted to run it in, and took off like a shot and finished strong!’
It was an amazing morning. After the finish, the boys changed into swim gear and went down to the beach.
Now this is a post about renegade racing, right? I will tell you about the great work they did that day:
1) Course layout- this is a great course to run. Scenic views for a good part of it, not too flat, not too hilly, just about right.
2) The expo- this is a smaller race, but had a decent amount of vendors. Felt a little bigger this year than when we ran it a couple of years ago.
3) Course management- this is both a good and bad(see below). There were many people throughout the course directing people to stay on the right and keeping people moving and motivated.
4) The bling- the medal was fantastic. Renegade has seriously upped their medal game from the first event we did with them (many years ago).
The (only) not so good:
1) Course management- I know I said both good and bad. I think the only issue I felt was the placement of the one and only water station on the 5k course. It was very close to the turning point of the 5k course, which means you hit it pretty quick on the way back, and have over a mile before you reach it and after you leave it (the second time), which could be a challenge for some. In defense of the placement, all three courses have to be considered (10k and 10mile) and logistically, it really is the perfect spot as far as getting supplies to and from that spot.
…as you can see, I felt the event was as always, very well done. We are always thrilled to run a renegade event, we know it will be a great one!!!