Review of @Runq8Official 10KM run @ForwardInspire

The day has come, and gone, the most eagerly anticipated race on the Kuwait Calendar, boasting almost 2,000 active participants… RunQ8

From their humble beginning in 2010, where they started from the Scientific center, we were there, and now, 5 years later, we are still here, kicking tush and taking names.

From the archives of 2010

From the archives of 2010

 

Another archived shot (what the heck was I doing)

Another archived shot (what the heck was I doing)

So, with us, this race is personal. Its a commitment to always going the distance, no matter what. To high fiving/thumbs upping friends and strangers, to pushing ourselves beyond our purposed mortal limits, and to generally have a great time.

Now, the race was hyped up with the new organizer through various social media platforms, so the expectations were high. Day by day as race-day inched closer in our calendars, more and more announcements were made regarding sponsors, gifts in the goody bag etc.

As is our duty and motto, here is the review of the race:

Firstly – the cons:

a) Late start: last year (link), the race started at 9AM, this year it was 8:30AM, a step in the right direction however still not early enough as the organizers seem to be disenchanted with the effects of global warming. Temperatures are getting hotter. Accept it! Work around it! Start at 8AM – the universal early-bird time.

b) Short distance: by that we mean the distance fell short by 100M, last year it was overshot by 250M, which is ok. Falling short means that avid runners do not get to set a new PR on their GPS devices.

c) Water stations: runners need water to hydrate. We accept that. However, there are two sizes that are available – 500ML and 330ML, the later is more opportune as it doesn’t lead to water wastage. We understand that the sponsors provide the water but next time ensure they are informed to bring smaller bottles, most of the bottles discarded on the floor were 80% full. I even saw one volunteer throw a bottle towards a runner that had passed him. Quite dangerous.

d) The roundabout: at the roundabout near the final stretch of 300M to the finish line, there was no clear demarcation as to where runners were supposed to go, which caused me to crash into another runner as we dashed for the finish line.

e) The fairground: it was great that the organizers got more land this time around, however the stalls were too widely spaced (being down the side), the traditional circle encampment would have worked wonders.

f) Medical facilities: I foolishly injured my back attempting to entertain the people at the finish line. Alas, once more I was denied my opportunity to jump over the finish line and reclaim former glory from 2012, so I opted for a forward roll reminiscent of KCR half marathon:

can't find the actual rolling picture; didn't make an album of facebook, searched through all pictures back to 2012 and found this, sorry.

can’t find the actual rolling picture; didn’t make an album of facebook, searched through all pictures back to 2012 and found this, sorry.

However, I slammed my lower back onto concrete. When I went to get medical assistance, at the FSRI tent, I was told to stretch, put some ice on it, take ibrufen at home. You would think such pills would be available at the event, let alone redirect me to the ambulance if you do not have authority to pass out pills.

g) Finishers pack: one of the things that had me really giddy to run the race was this post by the organizer:

Capture

Personally, I was very excited about the bandana, and would have been quite satisfied if that alone was in my finishers pack. I do not care much for the baseball cap, I have rarely seen anyone wear it at any time during the year, I have the same water bottle from last year and only wished to have the bandana.

Unfortunately, the sponsor only made a few of each of the bandana, the water bottle and the thermal mug (not pictured above). So when it came time to divvy up the goodies, the bags became different. Maybe I am being childish, but I believe you should not advertise something that does not end up in every bag. In addition, sorry to say, to the organizer that added the pedometer, in the 21st century we use GPS and phones to calculate distance, not step counters.

So message to the sponsors, please make sure your “goodies” are relevant to the time period we are in, and don’t repeat things every year, there are only so many baseball caps we can leave in the lobby of our building before we are thrown out for littering.

h) The medal: by far the greatest pet peeve of the race has to be the medal. RunQ8 have made us grown accustomed to their innovative and “shiny” medal designs over the past few years, sparing no detail. This year however, the medal can be described as “Dull”. The ribbon itself was already fraying at the sides, and the reason behind white and navy blue ribbons is beyond me.

The medal is what remains 20 or 30 years in the future when the t-shirt is nothing more than a tattered rag we use to clean the kitchen table tops. It serves as a reminder of a glorious age and day when we ran for a cause.

Pro’s:

a) Return run was awesome – the 5K back: last year there was no organization whatsoever with regards to the return run, with walkers and strollers taking up 90% of the road, this year however, the police were on high alert and gave runners full access to the entire road most of the time, which was excellent.

b) Awesome shirt!

The finish line theatrics in all their glory

The finish line theatrics in all their glory

 

source of my power (plus notice the jump rope from the previous post)

source of my power (plus notice the jump rope from the previous post)

 

In case you did not know, your legs SHOULD NOT be in this position at the finish line!

In case you did not know, your legs SHOULD NOT be in this position at the finish line!

Special mention goes to:

  1. Greg Ziembinski – for continuously thrashing his previous years Personal Record and landing on 1st Place atop the podium. You gotta tell us your secret!
  2. Wendy Davies – the wildcard who’s back all the way from Saudi to run the race then fly home in time to kick up on the couch, grade papers and watch whatever it is teachers in Saudi watch on TV!
  3. Abdulaziz Al-Khamis – who not only ran the race IN COSTUME, he did so and ran back for his mom, who finished the 10KM (congratulations Mrs. Al-K), whilst pulling a quick wardrobe change and donning a shirt that read “World’s Best Mother #1044”.
  4. The “Faithful One” for setting a new PR!

 

August 2011 ( View complete archive page )

September 2011 ( View complete archive page )

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