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Race Report: Color Me Rad 5k

Posted Aug 24 2012 12:09am
Wow, feels like all I've done this summer is post race reports!  Guess that's what happens when you go on vacation but keep coming back home on weekends to do races!  Ha ha.  It's been a super fun summer and here's the latest report...

Event though I totally wanted to, I wasn't sure if I was going to run the Color Me Rad 5k when it came to Vancouver because it fell on the Saturday right after Seawheeze.  But thanks to a wicked Groupon, the decision kind of made itself and suddenly my best friend and I were registered.  This race looked like it would be so much fun.

The race was being held out at UBC and since it's a fair drive from home, my friend and I opted to do race day package pick up on Saturday morning.  When we got on campus we were shocked at how busy it was - there were cars and people everywhere and huge lineups to get into the parkades!  I had never been to such a widely attended 5k before!  The lines to get our packages were super long but moved super fast and it wasn't long before we had our race numbers and were ready to go...

The atmosphere was pretty cool - everyone was in a good mood, ready for some crazy running fun and there were lots of funny outfits too.  We were told to wear white and there were runners in everything from white wifebeater tank tops to tutus to wedding dresses and even tight-whitie mens underwear!

We were assigned to waves but the start was pretty relaxed and we simply worked out way into the crowd and waited for the gun to go off...

Still squeaky clean!

We started off running and maybe about a km down the road we approached our first colour station - pink!

We weren't exactly sure what to do at the station - run fast or run slow?  And it turns out we played it a bit too safe and were still pretty white when we passed through on the other side.  We carried on down the road and came to the next station where they had volunteers with paint in spray guns and were spraying us as we went by.  Green!

By this point we saw runners passing by who had already hit the turnaround and were headed back to the finish.  They were COVERED in colour!  It was pretty funny to see them go by, we could barely see their faces.  I actually had to run off and catch a plane as soon as the race was over so I didn't want to let my hair get too messy since I wouldn't have time for a shower before my flight.  But, that didn't mean I couldn't get the rest of myself all coloured and messy.  We decided we had to be a bit more adventurous and spend more time at the next colour station.  So we did.  And it was rad!

Here's how it worked
  • At each colour station were boxes filled with coloured corn starch.
  • As you ran into the station you could reach in and grab handfuls of colour to throw at your friends, at strangers or onto yourself
  • Some stations also had volunteers spraying coloured water at runners
  • You could spend as little or as long as you liked at each station
At each station we spent more time getting messy and it was so fun.  The corn starch felt a little weird in your mouth but generally had no flavour.  As we went through each station it got harder and harder to see because our sunglasses were getting covered with dust.

Eventually we hit the turnaround, another colour station and made our way back to the pink/orange station for some final fun before heading for the finish line...
The pink station!

This is me trying to look tough...

As we neared the finish line we were each handed our own colour packet to use once we crossed the finish.  I grabbed pink...

And then when we crossed we got even more messy with everyone else at the finish...

And here is the final product!

I did wear my Garmin (complete with a protective layer of plastic wrap) but my final time was all wonky because we stopped so much and part of the run was in the trees and I'm sure I lost signal...

Somewhere under all that mess it says something like 32 mins.  So was it my fastest 5k?  Definitely not.  But, considering that this race didn't even have a clock, the time soooo didn't matter.  Color Me Rad was completely about letting go and having fun and that's exactly what we did.  I've had a lot on my mind this summer and getting the chance to run around and act all crazy and throw stuff at people was just what I needed.  It was such a fun event and a really memorable way to cap off a busy summer running season.

After the finish, everyone was invited to do a big colour throw.  Every 10 minutes everyone gathered in a group and threw more colour at each other in a great big mess.  It looked really cool as everyone threw their colour up in the air...

Color throw at the finish line...

We stuck around to watch the festivities for a bit and then walked across campus to none other than McDonalds for a little bit o' grease to celebrate our messy run.  Actually, it was one of the places we actually felt comfortable arriving all coloured up and didn't have to worry about making a mess!  We hit the bathrooms there to wash our faces and arms a little bit...

Getting "clean" in the McDonald's bathroom - classy!

I actually did feel a little bit bad for whichever McDonald's employee had to clean the bathrooms that day because there was a steady stream of runners using the facilities to clean up a little!

The ending to my day was that I had to catch a flight back to Vancouver Island.  The family and I have been spending our vacation time visiting my husband's family on Sproat Lake and I had returned to Vancouver for a couple days to do the race.  Unfortunately I had to head straight to the float plane terminal from the race so coloured legs and all, I hit the sunny skies and returned to our vacation...

Here's me in my Color Me Rad t-shirt on the smallest float
plane I've ever been on - yikes!

Anyhow, Color Me Rad was definitely that - rad!  We had such a fun time and I truly hope this event returns to Vancouver again next year because I'll be there for sure! 
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