Monday, June 2, 2014

Jailhouse Brewery 5k Recap

Jailhouse Brewery 5k, Hampton GA
Field: A few hundred
Spectators: Not many. There was a small, but enthusiastic crowd at the finish.
Start/Finish: 6pm start @ Jailhouse Brewery
Course: Fairly flat with only one small hill.
Schwag: T-shirt, coozie, and optional wrist band for beer tasting at the brewery post race.
Other: The race benefits Breast cancer research and is at a brewery. It really can't get any better than that.
The Jayhawk has been dying to visit Jailhouse Brewery. Newer (est 2009) on the microbrew scene, Jailhouse Brewing is a small, but quickly growing brewery about 40 minutes south of Atlanta. The brewery is in an old jailhouse, so everything about it is jail themed. We've been fans of their brew for several years now (I like the Mugshot IPA and the Jayhawk goes for the Slammer Wheat), but haven't made it down for visitation yet. When we learned they had a 5k that we didn't have to wake up early for and found a killer deal on bibs, we were in.
Pre-race smiles. No storm clouds yet.
Seeing as I don't run many 5ks, (I wore a bridesmaid's dress in my last one and ate 10 donuts during the one before that), I really wasn't sure how to prepare or pace myself for the race. On top of that, the start was at 6pm, so fueling was kind of hard to time but since I rested so hard on Friday (read: I was a little hungover), I was interested in fueling too much anyway.
Post race party at the brewery. Runners love a good craft brew!
We arrived in Hampton 40 minutes before the race. Just enough time to get our bibs and visit the port-a-johns. There were some ominous clouds approaching, but no one seemed worried as we lined up for the start. Given that it was a small charity race with a 1 mile family walk starting at the same time, there wasn't a lot of organization at the start and we got stuck somewhere in the middle of the crowd. I spent most of the first half a mile just trying to get through the crowd and find a spot I could run my pace (whatever that might be).
 All smiles because I'm done running and refueling with some tasty brews!
Just over a half a mile in, the wind began to pick up and it was clearing lightening in the distance. So there I was hungover, battling a headwind, and running into a lightening storm. Sure, probably not the highlight of my athletic career, but it was one of those moments when you realize that you really do love this sport even when you have days like this, and it was time to figure out how much pain I was willing to go through for the next 25 minutes.
Race shirt, Age Group award, and waiting out the rain.
There was one water stop on the course about half way in, a lovely site for my dehydrated self, and shortly after that I saw the Jayhawk approaching the halfway point looking strong and ahead of schedule. From that point on, I basically tucked my head down and just tried to grind it out until the finish. The last 0.2 miles or so was a long straight away, and as much as I tried to push, my dehydrated legs had nothing left to give. I finished in 24:05 (7:46/mile pace), the fastest 5k I've run in recent memory and good enough for 3rd in my age group.
Moments after finishing, the winds increased yet again and then the rain began.  Luckily the worst of the rain came after the Jayhawk finished (ahead of schedule mind you!).  We huddled in the water tent for a few minutes and then found an awning to hang out under while the storm passed.  It was a short one and in no time it was clear to visit the brewery and celebrate our unexpectedly good races.
The Jayhawk photobombing my beer, and then enjoying one himself. The glass says,
"If you believe in the little man, small towns, and big flavor, then you're one of us."
I'm sure there are a lot of lessons I could learn from this race like "Don't be a jackass the night before a race", "Respect the 5k", and "You can push a lot harder than you realize," but mostly I was just happy we both had a good time.  The Jayhawk has been battling a series of injuries for the past few months and it was great to see him have a positive experience and finish a race with a smile on his face. Also, with the Wizard of Oz like weather conditions, I feel ready to take on Kansas.

Are you a 5k fan? What is you favorite part about them?

12 comments:

  1. I am not a huge 5K fan because I stink at pacing and would rather run a longer slower race. However, I go for things like free food (or free brew).

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    1. The pacing is always the problem for me too. I only seem to do ones that involve food or beer.

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  2. Congrats on the great finish, especially in the wind. Running while hungover is an interesting training technique for your ultra. :)

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    1. Thanks David! They recommended training on tired legs for ultras, but I went for totally overtired. :P

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  3. Great job on the finish! Sometimes life happens...it's hard to behave before every race lol It's funny you got to cure the hangover with some brewskies :)
    I like running 5K's for some reason I never just run 3 miles, I always tack on that little bit, even on the treadmill. It's short enough I will push myself faster than normal, and it's not long enough to really wear me out.

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    1. Thanks Karen! Life gets the best of me sometimes even when I have good intentions! I always tack on the extra in training too.

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  4. Hey great race, enjoyed the recap. I've slowly learned not all races are about pace and finishing time. Nothing wrong with a race where fun and a friend running injury free are most important. Of course one word of advice, why drink so much the night before lol

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    1. Thank you! Yeah, the drinking the night before wasn't really planned. Life happens sometimes!

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  5. i avoid 5ks like the plague, however if there was a brewery involved, I'd probably join too. congrats on the age group award, always a confidence booster!

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    1. I usually avoid them too, but I've run 3 this year! So not the norm for me. It was the promise of craft beer. :)

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  6. Sounds like fun although I don't like running at night or with lightning.

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    1. Thanks! The night thing was different, but I train pretty often in the afternoon, so it didn't bother me too much. The lightening wasn't so cool.

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