Yesterday I ran the Crazylegs Classic with my husband in Madison, WI. Overall, it was such a fun race! It was chilly yesterday morning (around 40 degrees when we got out there to line up in our wave). And the wind didn’t help. Unfortunately our wave marker was in the shade, so we did a lot of waiting and jumping up and down to try to get warm. Everyone else around us was also groaning about the chill that was setting in before the gun went off.
The race started on time (brownie points for that!) and the waves were timed to take off about every two minutes, which I really liked. One thing about crowded races that I don’t care for is trying to run around people at the start just to get moving to a comfortable pace. The race was an 8K, which is kind of an unusual distance for an organized race, but it was really nice. The first two miles were tough, though! We knew there would be a couple of hills, but there were probably about 4 total, and they were killers. We used the downhills to gain momentum, since there were a couple that rolled from one to the next.
The awesome views of Lake Mendota didn’t hurt. 😉 It was a beautiful, sunny day, so we enjoyed seeing parts of the UW campus that we’d never seen before. The wind coming off the lake was pretty chilly, but we warmed up somewhere around the 3rd mile. The course was very well marked and I heard my Garmin beep right as I was making the turn at mile 3. If you’re a runner (or even if you’re not, you’ll probably understand all the same), there’s nothing more annoying than running a race that is not properly marked.
As I said, the first two miles were tough. I spotted a woman about 10 feet in front of me around mile 2 who looked like she was running a pretty consistent and fast pace. I decided to make her my pacer and vowed not to let her out of my sight. Well, at one point around mile 3, she took off. I made sure to keep her in view, but she kept getting further ahead. Around mile 4, we caught up to her and passed her. That felt good, because I knew we were still moving at a great pace and that we were near the end.
The race ended in Camp Randall Stadium, home of the UW Badgers. It was nice to end it that way, but not quite what we expected. As soon as we entered the stadium (on a downhill, which was nice), the finish line was right there. We expected to run a lap around the field or track first, as I’ve done that in another race that also ended in a stadium, the Papa John’s 10 Miler in Louisville, KY, but this stadium doesn’t have a track. Either way, it was a fun way to end the race and enjoy the band for a bit before heading to lunch.
I ended up finishing 85th in my age bracket and 320th female overall. I’m not sure how many runners there were this year, but it seemed like several thousand. The crowds from the farmer’s market were also nice. People stopped what they were doing to cheer on the runners and watch the wave starts. Starting with the view of the Capitol is pretty stunning in and of itself. It reminded me of our race in St. Paul several months ago that ended at the Capitol building there.
We ate at The Old Fashioned across the street from the Capitol. We were lucky to show up just before a huge rush of people came, so we only had to wait about 30 minutes. The hostess was nice enough to take down my phone number and call us when our table was ready, which meant we could walk around the farmer’s market for a bit. If you’ve never been to the farmer’s market in Madison on a Saturday near the Capitol building, you’re missing out. It’s enormous and the largest producer-only farmer’s market in the U.S. So, it’s nice to know your money is going directly to the local farmers. 🙂 I got a few good photos that I plan to post soon, so stay tuned.
Did you race this weekend? Anyone ever run an 8K race? Do you enjoy going to farmer’s markets on Saturday morning in your area?