April 19, 2014
I like doughnuts. A lot. I like running. A lot. So, a 5k with doughnuts sounds like a dream come true to me.
In all truthfulness, I joke about doughnuts a lot. I do like them though I am quite picky about them. I really don’t eat them all that often. But, I genuinely did love the idea of a 5k that involved eating doughnuts as part of the challenge. So, of course, I registered for it. It also supports a good cause (B.A.C.O.N. – the Big Awesome Charity of Nona) so it’s truly a win-win.
When you sign up for this race, you decide, in advance, how many doughnuts you will eat. You can choose 0, 3, 6, or 12. I’ve never tried to eat doughnuts in the middle of a run but I’m fairly confident I can eat three without barfing. I missed early registration for the race but they have race day registration so I’ll have to do that.
I drive over to Lake Nona; about an hour from my house; the morning of the event. I am slightly familiar with the area but not enough to know where to park and such. I have to park about a 10 minute walk away from the start. I walk to the registration area and am able to register easily. I am even able to (still) get a race shirt. It isn’t my size but I won’t wear it anyhow. I’m planning a project with my race shirts for this year so I really just want it for that.
I don’t want to walk all the way back to my car so I roll the shirt up and am able to fit it in my SPI belt. They also gave everyone a plastic pig nose. Some people are wearing them. A lot of girls have them in their hair like a ponytail holder. I opt to put mine in my SPI belt as well.
There are no bibs and there is no timing for this race. They do ask people that walk to and folks with strollers and children to line up near the back. This does NOT happen. I don’t know why people can’t just be respectful of each other and realistic of their own abilities. Lining up according to your pace; or in the back because you have a stroller and/or small children; is just safe. It helps prevent trampling and congestion. You don’t get any less of a race experience. In fact, you’re likely to get a better experience because you aren’t going to get run over or pushed by someone who is trying to get around you. Sadly, even in fun runs, people just line up where they feel like they should be or where they want to and it causes problems for everyone.
I lined up in the middle of the pack but as soon as I could, I moved to the outside of the pack. We were on a sidewalk to begin with and then moved to the road once we were out of the park. It was awful on the sidewalk so I was happy to run in the road.
The course winds through the neighborhood by the YMCA. It is a nice area and very runner friendly. I as I run through, I wish that my neighborhood was more like this. About the midway point, those runners that have chosen to eat doughnuts enter the pigpen. Based on the number of doughnuts you have chosen, you have a bracelet to identify you. I have a dark pink bracelet so I find the appropriate tent. They have the doughnuts already packaged so I only have to grab a bag.
Three doughnuts doesn’t really seem like a lot. Especially considering some people have chosen to eat six and even 12. It’s really funny to see some of the people eating 12. Many of them are making a little picnic out of it; they’re camped out in a spot and several have brought mini rolling pins to squish the doughnuts down making them less bulky to eat. They’re also rolling them flat and stacking them so they can eat multiple doughnuts at once.
I got my first doughnut down with no problem. The second one was a little tougher. It is really sweet and I desperately need some water to wash it down. There are volunteers walking around handing out water and water stations at each tent. I get some water and this helps a great deal. The third one is still tough though. The sweetness is getting to me. I don’t eat a lot of sweets in general; one doughnut is usually enough for me. But, I get the third one down, gulp down some more water, and head out of the pigpen to finish my run.
Running now is a battle to run but not get sick from all that sugar. It’s comical to listen to people as we run. Everyone has such a heavy load in their belly and it’s just sloshing around with the water. It really is a fun challenge though. The course even has some funny signs to “motivate” us along.
I turn the final corner and head down the final stretch to the finish line. I get my pig run medal and grab some more water. I’ve managed to keep my doughnuts down and I don’t feel like barfing. This is a success in my book.
I had a really great time at this race. Even though it wasn’t timed, I tracked my time with my Garmin. My Garmin said I finished in 39:20 including my doughnut stop. I consider this an excellent time since I’ve never tried to do anything like this before. The run is for a great cause and it’s a fun challenge. I’ll definitely do this one again. While I may not opt for the six or 12 doughnut challenge, I will definitely try the three doughnut challenge again and try to better my time.
On a side note, I believe I heard that there was even a challenge that involved eating a random assortment of doughnuts. I had glazed doughnuts in my bag (as did everyone in the three doughnut challenge). I am very picky about doughnuts; I don’t like anything filled or fruity and I don’t like many flavors. I pretty much stick with chocolate or glazed. I give props to anyone who accepted this challenge. You folks are doughnut rockstars!
Pig Run by the numbers:
Breakfast: ~$20 (I had to have something solid after eating doughnuts!)