I actually have a lot to say, but will try to keep this short because most of this will just be complaining. To say it in one sentence: I don't think I will ever walk the Peachtree Road Race again. I highly doubt that I will Do the Peachtree again if I cannot run it.
We left a bit earlier than last year and arrived at Marta around 5:30. We were able to park up close and had no trouble getting on the train and making it comfortably over to the starting point. When we were walking towards the starting areas there was a lady looking to buy a number. She saw me, saw my number, and saw that my arm was in a sling. I could tell the hope in her voice when she said "You aren't going to run with a broken arm are you?" I quickly said no, but I am still walking. Her hope quickly fell. It was kinda funny to watch.
It was nice to walk it from where I was in timegroup 1A, the people were kind to me and didn't give me a hard time for still starting in the timegroup 1A even though I was not running. Near the beginning of the race they let the 1A and 1B groups kinda melt together. I was no longer at the back of all the runners in the timegroup I was in, I was now in the middle of the pack. I didn't keep walking back, I stayed right where I was. When the race began, I quickly worked my way all the way over to the right and believe I stayed out of everyone's way.
Here is where the negative stuff begins. Once we passed where all the fences where on both sides of the road I saw hundreds if not thousands of people lining both sides of the road with numbers on, ranging all the way up to the 9's. At first I thought these were just people that were watching the start of the race, and then were going to walk back and start with their group. I quickly found that this wasn't the case as they all started jumping in all around me. Some running, but most of them walking. This went on for the first couple miles although diminishing as it went on, with people still jumping in to run just the last mile. I should have been one of the first walkers all the way though. I am sure I would have been passed at some point by a walker, but I should have seen mostly runners the entire race. I wasn't in competition, and I wouldn't have cared if thousands of runners were starting around me if they had the right timegroup, but for these people to cheat and not do the entire 10k absolutely ruined the entire experience for me. I got more upset as it went along.
My thoughts are: If you can't run the entire race, run and walk it. If you can't run at all walk it. If you can't walk the entire distance than this event is not for you..... let someone else that wants to do the entire distance register instead of you. Train up to the distance and do the entire distance next year. End of my thoughts.
I did take the opportunity to get my free donut from Publix along the way. I also got a Vitamin Water and was able to get a T-shirt from Chick-fil-a since I was just walking and not running. All things I wouldn't have even thought about had I been running.
My time was not official even though I had a timing chip from the 1A timegroup. I crossed the starting line with it over the strip, but the finish line strip was removed before I crossed the finish so I do not exist if I try entering my number to check the stats. This is OK, I understand. You have to run less than 55 minutes to get in timegroup 1 so you should be able to do it on race day at least close to an hour. I am not sure when they pulled the strip up, but it was before I crossed the line in 1:41:40. It was funny, when I went to turn in my chip the guy said he was getting bored. If I had actually run I would have taken offense to this, but since I only walked I understood.
I finished the race/walk in 1:41:40 with an average around 16 minute miles. I was more sore at the end of the race, and still today than I have been in a long time. I guess that is because I am using different muscles than if I was to run it. I am sure looking forward to getting back to running soon.
Tim Wilson - blog.262quest.com
Edit 7-8-08: Some pics are now available of this one armed bandit: pics