Yes, I’m doing two races this Memorial weekend; one Saturday morning and one Monday morning! I scheduled this to post Saturday morning, and while you read this, I’m probably out getting “color-fied” at Denver’s Color Run!
Ahhh, the Bolder Boulder! This is a staple race for Coloradians. It seems like EVERYONE does this race! It’s held on Memorial Day every year and is followed by a Memorial Day Tribute. Obviously, the race is held in granola Boulder, CO and winds through the pretty streets of the residential district and finishes with a lap inside Folsom field (the football stadium for the CU Buffs – which is unfortunately my rival!).
So many people are at this race….about 50,000 people participate! They separate people in 92 different waves. The first waves are qualified waves; you have to show proof that you can run under a certain time. The next section of waves is sub 70 mins, but without proof. I unfortunately had to register for one of these waves. Then there’s military waves, KBCO waves (a local radio station), and more jog/walk waves at varying times. This event is so huge and elaborate but very well organized with the bus system (which I will be taking – you DO NOT want to try parking in Boulder for this race) specifically set up for race day and signs to make sure you get to where you’re going.
The course itself isn’t horribly challenging. It’s flat MOST of the way, but there are a few hills – one being right at the end when you just about to finish. As you wind through the neighborhoods, there’s so many houses joining in on the festivities. There’s always the house with marshmallows, the doritos house, the slip and slide house, the sprinkler house, and a bunch more! You can chug a beer or take a shot as your run by the college student houses. I have yet to participate in any of that cause a running belly full of dorritos, beer and vodka makes me want to puke just thinking about it. There’s plenty of people bumping music and bands playing on the side of the road, so no iPod should be needed. And I’m sure there will be plenty of awesome race signs and crazy costumes! ; ) (<– check out those blogs, they crack me up daily!!!)
I know this race sounds like a fun run…however, I have some serious competition with this race! I’ve ran two years previous. The first year, I ran with my good friend Joanna. I have no idea what our race time was (I actually could easily look it up – but it’s embarrassing) – it was pretty slow…I wasn’t much into racing at the time, but we ran and finished together. She moved to Uganda, so the next year I ran with a boyfriend at the time…now here’s the deal: Last year, I finished in 1hour and 1min!!! I was sooo upset…we had an iPod with us and started/stopped it on our own. When we crossed the finish line it said just under 60 min, so I was super excited to do it under an hour…but when I got home and checked the official results online I was soooo bummed! The other competitive part about this race for me is that I had ran into some girls I went to high school with last year. They both are kinda fit, but I would not consider them “runners” and at the time last year, I was really getting into the competitive/racing part of the sport. Well, they beat my time by a few minutes AND broke an hour! Yes, JEALOUS – I’m not even going to try to hide that fact!
So this year, we meet again Bolder Boulder! I have some serious goals here. After getting that awesome PR at the Run for the Zoo, and after thinking it was a lack of altitude and then finding out later that it is the same elevation as Boulder; this has become a serious challenge! Goals:
1. Definitely HAVE to break 1 hour. This is a definite. No ifs, ands, or buts around it. (One of the reasons I want to finish in under an hour is so I can register next year for an earlier wave in the qualifying times -> it’s less crowded the earlier the wave)
2. Try to get close to 51 minutes because that’s how fast I ran the Run for the Zoo in Albuquerque.
(3. my secret goal that’s not really a goal but the mean/competitive side of me: beat those girls!!! haha..shhhh…don’t tell)
One of my favorite parts about this race is that you finish in the stadium. There’s always a ton of people that have already finished just watching everyone roll in and everyone is just constantly cheering! Even though there is always a handful of people finishing at the same time and it may be just the roar of their talking, it still feels like they are all cheering for you! It’s great and makes that last 0.1 mile so exhilarating!
After you cross the finish line, you lift up your shoe for the volunteers to cut off your timing chip and head to get your post race goodies. Your registration price of course gets your the tshirt but at the Bolder Boulder you also get a lunch bag filled with snacks (in Colorado, you see lots of people with the lunch bags all around; they’re like collectors items), a free beer (it’s usually a michalobe beer I think – gross!) and/or pop. You can sit in the stadium and watch the rest of the runners finish and then the Memorial Day tribute where paragliders jump from planes and land in the stadium.
If anyone else has races this weekend: Good luck and run hard! I’ll let you know how I hold up to my goals!