Lake Wales Sunrise Series #1

June 21, 2014

My chiropractor mentioned this race series to me. The Lake Wales Rotary Club is using the race series to fund some improvements along one of the local running trails. They hope to raise enough money to add some water fountains and mile markers along the route. Since this is an area I also like to run, and it’s is quite close to my house, I signed up for the entire series of three races.

There will be three 5k races in the series and they start in front of the lake across from Kiwanis Park. I will get a race t-shirt for running the series and I will get a new bib for each race. (Course map.)

I get to the park early enough to get my bib and t-shirt. I have plenty of time still so I sit in my car for a little while longer. I don’t like to run with a lot of extra stuff so I take my car key remote off my key ring and lock my doors (using the door button, not the remote) when I get out. I shut the door and check that my car is locked by pressing the button and the damn button doesn’t work. I have now officially locked my keys in my car. Awesome.

The race t-shirt for the Lake Wales Summer Sunrise series.

The race t-shirt for the Lake Wales Summer Sunrise series.

I try repeatedly to get the button to work. But, it becomes quite clear that the battery has chosen this moment to die. I don’t have a spare hidden on my car anywhere so I’m pretty much stuck. Luckily, there is one person that I have given a key to my house. I send her a quick text and cross my fingers that she will call before I get finished with my race. I can’t do much now so I head to the start line.

The race starts and I’m heading up a hill in the first quarter mile of the race when my phone rings. I am immediately relieved as it is my friend. I start walking and proceed to tell her about my situation. She, of course, laughs at me. Hell, I’m laughing at me. We have two options. One, she can go to my house and get my spare keys and bring them to me. Or, she can come get me, take me back to my house to get my spare key, and then bring me back to my car.

She opts for the first option but is a bit nervous because of my dogs. My girl Shelby is a jumper and is quite strong. Shelby also gets nervous around people and will sometimes flash her teeth and nip. My friend, Dawn, is nervous that Shelby will get nervous and try to jump on her or flash her teeth. She is a bit scared of Shelby. I explain to her that she has to be firm with Shelby. If she uses a stern tone and kind of gives off the “I’m the boss” vibe, Shelby will be OK. She has to assert her authority. Shelby is a good girl and she listens very well once she’s calm. She gets very excited though and pretty much acts like a crazy dog when someone comes in the door (even me).

We hang up and I’m almost at the one mile mark. I take off running knowing this isn’t going to be any kind of PR. But, I am thankful that Dawn is able to help me with my little predicament. I vow to never leave my key in the car again.

Considering I walked almost all of the first mile, I finished in 35:59. I didn’t think that was too bad at all. I grabbed a water and then went to sit by my car until Dawn arrived with my key. There wasn’t anything else I could do!

Once Dawn arrived, I was able to open my car. She made sure I got in OK and we both laughed at my situation. But, again, I am so grateful that she was able to help me. Otherwise, I would’ve been calling a locksmith and paying a fee to get into my car! I immediately drove to Lowe’s to buy a new battery for the remote!

I didn’t stick around for the awards ceremony; I generally don’t since I never win anything. So, imagine my surprise when I found out that I was first in my age group (this is the spot where I tell you that I was the only one in my age group!). Since I didn’t stick around, I won’t get the award (they won’t mail it). But, it’s cool to know that I won it. Even if I was the only one. You have to start somewhere!

I really liked this course. It wasn’t the usual loop around the lake like I thought it would be. We ran through some residential areas with some older homes so it was nice scenery. The last mile-ish was on the running path around the lake.

Aside from the hill at the beginning, the course was mostly flat. There were some other small hills but they were really more inclines than hills; we just don’t have a lot of hills in Florida.

I am definitely looking forward to the next one in this series. And, I hope it attracts more runners since it is benefiting a cause that benefits runners in the area.

Lake Wales Series costs:

Registration (series): ~$64
Gas: ~$5
Breakfast: ~$5
Total: ~$74

Gotta run.

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