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I completed my first ever stroller 5K with my daughter in the stroller at See Jane Run’s Half Marathon and 5K. It was really fun, and I prepared for this mentally a lot more than I did physically. Sure, I did run 5Ks on the treadmill, but I was not able to do it with a stroller beforehand. I researched race etiquette, so that even though I am new, I would not act like one. My husband bought me a cute outfit to run in, and I felt happy wearing this outfit.
On race day, I didn’t have the luxury of arriving super early like my friends. Luckily, my husband was ready to be there to support me, and to drop me off so I didn’t have to worry about parking. Alameda is not too difficult to park in, but when you are dealing with a baby, it does save a lot of time to have drop off! Immediately upon arrival I can see that See Jane Run is a newbie-filled race. I can tell because a lot of people are wearing the red race t-shirt. Oddly enough, most of the stroller pushers like me worn our own clothes — I think most of us didn’t have time to get the t-shirt before the race!
As it is my first time running with a stroller in a race, I kept steady focusing on my form (feet landing at forefoot area, two hands on the stroller). The most annoying part, though, are the numerous people who have no race etiquette. I often see groups of women who will line up side by side next to each other blocking the way — it is a race, not a protest, people! Luckily, I did not push myself too hard and was able to talk the whole time, so I would yell out, “Stroller coming to your right/left, please!”
The race has a fun and energetic atmosphere. My runner’s high kicked in quite strong and I was cheering on the other stroller mamas that I see after I turned around at the 5K half way point. I crossed the finish line happy and exhilirated, though I soon learned that sometimes people get into “bite me mode” instead and not everyone is happy after a run/walk. I had quite a hard time finding the t-shirt and goodie bag line (and was yelled at by some woman who was upset that her heel was touched by my stroller wheel when she stopped in front of me abruptly. It was a buzz kill somewhat, but I apologized and stayed cheerful (careful to let a few people go in front and between me and the angry lady at the line… and the line was a darn long one. My husband and son came to meet with me at the finishing festival area. After I got the t-shirt and goodie bags we moved along to the playground area, where I sat and breastfed Jane while I watched my son play with my husband. It was a wonderful Sunday morning.
All in all I felt the race was well-organized and a finely produced event but there were several issues with the See Jane Run race app on iPhone that is available this year. I sent in the following email to the event organizers in the hopes that they might fix the problems. These problems made me regret upgrading to premium, though:
My next run, Run-to-Play, will be the coming Saturday at CVHS. This one is not a stroller friendly run, though it is practically next door so no need to drive!