Tuesday, September 15, 2009

A letter to the blogger

Théoden,

I was looking at the course for the Hit the Brixx 5K and 10K. Both run significantly downhill for the first half and then return uphill for the second half. I realize it's tough to set up a course downtown that doesn’t involve hills, but as a casual 5K runner (i.e. I run in the 25-27 minute range for 5Ks), these setups don't seem to be a whole lot of fun.

I drove this route yesterday and it's going to be a very long uphill climb from the halfway point to the finish. I don't mean to be whining, but this makes me really debate whether I want to run this race. Do other readers feel the same way or am I the only one?

Thanks,
T.D.

16 comments:

Anonymous said...

I totally agree. This doesn't sound like a fun race unless you are very seasoned with running hills.

Anonymous said...

What does "casual 5K runner" mean? If it means you occasionally run a 5K, then don't run the hard ones. If it means you run 5Ks, but not for time, then don't wear your chip and walk the hills. Some people like a challenge and this course gives them a challenge. It's more satisfying to finish a hard race than an easy one. Try it.

Anonymous said...

Oh, come on... Seriously? No T.D, you are not the only one... Unfortunately. This attitude has become more and more prevalent in recent years. People want to be rich but not work, be skinny but not exercise.

Look, you're going to get out of running what you put into it. If this course is too hard for you, then save your entry fee and stay home. I'm sure you can find a nice treadmill at the Y.

Yes, that last hill is tough, but that's part of the challenge, and frankly it's not THAT bad a hill. Those of us with the drive to take it on, we'll be out there. Would love to see you out there too! That hill isn't singling you out... Everyone who toes the line will need to deal with it. It's nothing personal. So why not just deal with it along with a few hundred of your best friends?

I really don't mean to sound so harsh. Hills are a part of running, along with sweat, blisters, an immense feeling of accomplishment, and all the other things that go along with it.

Anonymous said...

I think you guys are missing the point of this letter. I don't think T.D. is talking about being lazy or not wanting a challenge. I think they are just asking whether the local mom and pop 5K's need to be designed with such a difficult course for average runners. If you look around the starting line, I'm guessing Kenenisa Bekele won't be there. These are supposed to be fun runs to raise money for charity. Not World Class races for elite athletes.

Anonymous said...

"World class races for athletes"? Huh?!? I guess I shouldn't have done those 5ks, that 8k, that 10k, and those 1/2 marathons last year because apparently I had no business whatsoever out there being a 'casual runner'. And runing is something I just picked back up last year. Rome wasn't built in a day and I've worked my way up to training for a marathon. Might be doing 12min miles, but I'm doing it. Sorry, but I agree with 4:33pm...these courses should challenge you, otherwise they are designated as 'fun runs'. Our running program does have hills built in the weekly course/map because there will be a hill out there in most races. Hills are for conditioning and trust me, the average/'casual runner' can and should be running them.

Anonymous said...

6:43, you had me and then you lost me when you mentioned 'Our Running Program'. Obviously, you take running pretty seriously. The bottom line is that everyone does these races with different expectations. Some want the hardest course possible. Others just want to run the race, eat a bagel and go home. I don't know this course, but apparently, it might be more suited for the serious runner. Aren't these races supposed to be raising money? Seems like the course design should be able to satisfy 'serious runners' and 'casual runners'. More people means more money raised.

Anonymous said...

I don't think TD is lazy per se, but I don't think TD wants much of a challenge either. If you just want to go out for an easy run, what's the point of entering a race, fundraiser or otherwise. You can either save the money and just run on your own, or donate the money (with 100% of the proceeds going to said charity) and do a run on your own if it makes you feel better. I think TD's complaining is indefensible. If the course ran up the side of Crowder's Mountain, TD might have a point. But it doesn't. Just deal. Nobody that's out there will be World Class, not by a long shot. They are mostly just regular folks like TD. That TD can't handle running up a hill is his/her problem, not the race directors.

Anonymous said...

I'm a "run, eat a bagel, and go home" kind of runner, pushing a 10:00 per mile pace, and I think the Brixx Race is one of the best, most well run 10Ks in Charlotte. I love the course, and love the challenge of the hills.

Last year I started to take a walk break up that last hill, but was convinced to run again when a gentleman passed me by and encouraged me to give it another go.

Just think about how proud of yourself you'll be after conquering it!

Now I'm sad I'll be out of town that week!

Anonymous said...

There is almost one race each weekend in the Charlotte area. It is tough not having a race with some hills in it. I don't think anyone signs up for a race without knowing where it is held and what the hills are like. Even the Greekfest 5k, traditionally one of the flattest courses in Charlotte has hills in it. Two options for flat courses. Find a track at a local high school or college, or go to the coast. Sure the Hit the Brixx 5K is a tough course. But the post race goodies make up for those hills. You don't just get a bagle and gatorade. You get pizza from Brixx and beer from Carolina Blonde brewery. Special challenges call for special reward.

Anonymous said...

The hills on the Brixx course aren't that bad. They are certainly no worse than what I have in my own neighborhood. I don't think these local races are designed to scare away the "casual runner". I just don't know where in Charlotte you will find 6 miles without some hills like the ones on this course.

Anonymous said...

Personally, I like a course with some elevation change. I think a flat course is sometimes more difficult for me because my pace creeps up and I end up running too fast too early. Hills helps me manage my pace. As I've heard others say before, you just have to run your own race.

chupacabra said...

Well this got a bit testy.

I don't really care what the course is like. I'm a casual runner - woo hoo middle of the pack - and even I train on hills all the time.

I defy anyone to find a route of any distance all that in this town that doesn't involve hills. I never realized how hilly this town was until I started running.

know why they call it "uptown"?

go on guess

well if you know the secret there then you'll realize that any race that starts "uptown" will end up with you running up hill at the end

true story

Anonymous said...

I'm probably the slowest runner in Charlotte. I run the hills uptown pretty frequently. You know- just slow your pace and keep going. Make up time on the downhills if you need to. Prep for a 5k by practicing running some hills or a little farther so you still have gas in the tank at the end.

I will say- my first marathon in Cleveland Ohio was flat...until mile 24 where you get a nasty steep hill. step. by. step. You do it. You might curse the race management...

Anonymous said...

What a great thread! With all this discussion, I thought I had better look at the course again. I didn't know the course had changed. Used to have to run up Trade Street from the CPCC area. You now finish on the same street you start on: 7th street. Looks like the race organizers have already made this course easier!

Anonymous said...

Everyone here must have grown up at the beach!!

A hilly place is the Smokie Mountains. Colorado and New Hampshire are also hilly. The outskirts of these places are pretty hilly too. The city of Charlotte is about as (topographically) moderate and unspectacular as it gets.

Calling Charlotte hilly is like calling golf a sport: technically yes, but just barely.

Old said...

pathetic.