Official Race Recap: Baltimore Running Festival 5K Edition

Last night, I set out my clothes and packed my bag for gear check to get ready for this morning's race. I woke up around 6 a.m., got dressed, had a little pre-race apple cake, and headed out the door with my gear bag.

I got to Ravens stadium and found a parking spot. My copy of No Meat Athlete had arrived in yesterday's mail, so I sat around and read for a while. Around 7, I decided to do gear check and find my friend, Patti, who was running the half. It was at the very moment I opened the door to get out of my car that I realized I'd forgotten my running shoes. Since I was getting to the race so early, I hadn't wanted to coop up my feet in shoes earlier than necessary. Having the race in my backyard lulled me into a false sense of preparedness. Blurg!

Fortunately, I was in a good state of mind because my immediate and continued reaction was amusement. There may have been several fits of laughter over the next fifteen minutes. Since it was a 5k and I knew lots of people would be walking, I decided to go ahead and walk it in my flip flops.

So, this was my footwear for the race: not only flip-flops but a really old, worn out pair.
As I walked around the runner's area, I was particularly aware of the footwear of everyone around me. With temperatures in the sixties, I thought there would be at least one or two spectators in sandals but, noooo, even the spectators were better prepared for this race than I was. Oh well.

Patti and I found each other and hung out for a while before my race started. We found a great spot and watched the marathoners begin their race.

Look at those speedsters.
Once all the full marathoners passed, I headed to the start and Patti resumed her spot at the start to wait for me to pass. I knew where she would be, so I hammed it up for the camera. She didn't catch the actual jump but she did capture my preparatory move.

Just wear those flip flops with confidence and everyone will think it was on purpose.
Though I was a little frustrated that I couldn't run, it was fun to watch and listen to the people around me and to take in the sights and sounds of the races in a way I don't usually get to.

At one point, I heard someone say, "She's wearing flip flops!" I happened to be jogging downhill at that moment. I felt the need to shout, "I forgot my shoes!" They responded with words of encouragement; clearly, they thought I was a bad mamma jamma.

The best part came as I neared the end of 3 miles and a woman on the sidelines shouted, "I ran with you once! Briefly! I can't remember your name!" I recognized her and shouted back, "Sue? I'm Kate!" Her reply was, "Keep moving! Nikita here!" We ran together once at a Saturday morning group run and she remembered me when I passed in a race months later. Awesome!

I couldn't stop myself from jogging across the finish line. My official time was 47:40. It was a slow pace but it would still put me across the finish line at the RW Half well before the cutoff. Yay!

Immediately after I finished, the rain that had held off all morning, started lightly falling. I collected my medal (yes, a medal for a 5k), got some water and a little food, and tried to make my way back to see the beginning of the half marathon. Unfortunately, I couldn't navigate my way around all the barriers, so I missed out on cheering some pals.

I made my way home and found my shoes waiting for me on the kitchen table, just where I left them.

I do not recommend running in flip flops, these would have been MUCH better.

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