After a lot of thought and consideration -- I have decided to retire One Foot in Reality and leave it as an Archive. I will still monitor it to keep the trolls at bay, but will not be posting here any longer.

If you are looking for my new posts, please go to www.haroldlshaw.com .

Thank you for all they years of following One Foot In Reality.


Thursday, June 6, 2013

Inaugural Quarry Road Trail Series Race - Race Recap 6-4-16

After a lot of thought I have decided to move some of best of my old posts from Aging Runnah and A Runnah’s Story blogs, primarily the old reviews, maybe a few of the better posts and race reports that I have written over the years. I have a feeling that at some point, my WordPress.com blogs are simply going to go away and I want to still be able to go back and read some of the stuff I wrote.

If you are reading this blog post, that is why it is has been re-posted here.

Originally posted on: June 6, 2013

On Tuesday, we had the first race of the Quarry Road Trail Race Series and I did not run!

This was a planned no run race. I committed to the race director – Patrick last month, that I would help him out where ever he needed me to help.

This means that my Quarry Road Race Series recaps will be from a different perspective than usual – instead of writing from a runner’s perspective, I will be writing from a race volunteer’s perspective.

What a gorgeous night for a run, in the woods a light breeze (that had a couple of pretty good gusts) to keep the bugs reasonable and temps in the mid to upper 60’s. It made me wish that I could have run!

What did I Do?

Pat put me on the registration table, due to my limited mobility.

I had purposely never volunteered to work the registration table before, I am not crazy about dealing with money and avoid it when I can, just one of my idiosyncrasies. So I was glad that Jean another Central Maine Strider was there doing the registration also. She definitely knew how to manage the registration process and showed me a few little tricks/tips to help make things run smoothly, (as long, as the wind doesn’t blow too much and spread your papers all over the field).

After a couple of minutes I figured out what she wanted me to do and we got a good routine going. The best part was that everyone who was registering was patient and seemed like they were really looking forward to the race.

There were quite a few people that I knew going through the registration line. Unfortunately, I did not really have a lot time to socialize; we were busy registering runners. There was no pre-registration and we had 57 runners for the 3K and 10 for the 12 and under fun run and had between 30 and 45 minutes to get it done (no computerized registration, everything was done by hand).

Then as part of the registration process (which I really didn’t realize before) is that the volunteers who do the registration have to also get things setup so that the results can be posted in a timely fashion once the race is over. Again, Jean showed her expertise and we got things prepared, just after the race started.

This meant that we had about 10 minutes to relax, before the first finishers of the 3K would be done. At this point, a brain break was definitely needed!

Then after the first 25 finishers came in we got busy again, we got the tape with times and paper with the runner’s number in order of finish, we had to collate and post the result on a poster board. Then we did the same routine a couple more times until we got through all 57 runners (definitely not a bad number for the first race).

Now I can see why it is so easy to screw up posting the race results. It was definitely distracting for us while we were attempting to collate and post the results, while runners, parents and whoever, are trying hard to see the results, talk with you about how they did or asking about how to buy a race t-shirt - right then.

From now on when I am at a race, I will move a long ways away from the people doing the results and let them focus on getting that very TOUGH job done before I talk with them or try to look at the results (well at least I will try).

Luckily, we only had one moment of confusion when a father/daughter had put on the wrong numbers and we had to correct it on the poster. Overall and thanks to Jean’s experience in managing the registration/results table, we got through that side of the race – without any issues.

Listening to the runners after the race was over, I really think that everyone had a good time; I did not hear that anyone got lost or took a wrong turn. I saw a lot of smiling, high fives and listened to the runners complain about the hills, they weren’t in shape for this and all the other things that runners (me included) whine about after they had fun at a good race.

Being a race volunteer meant that I got to the race early, worked doing something pretty the whole time I was there and was one of the last to leave. To be honest, doing the volunteer side of the race is probably harder than actually running the race for me. There is definitely less time for socializing or being off by yourself.

As runners, sometimes we take for granted that the registration process is going to go quickly and easily, that the course will be setup, well-marked, aid stations placed where necessary, results posted/available, published quickly and the awards ceremony handled flawlessly.

If you are a runner and you have never volunteered to work at a race before, I really urge you do so, that way you can see the other side of the race – it might surprise you how much there actually is to do to ensure things go smoothly. It continues to surprise me.

One week done and only nine more weeks of being a volunteer at the Quarry Road Race Series in Waterville, Maine. Shhhhhhh but don’t tell anyone, but even though it was a lot of work, I still had a lot of fun as a volunteer at the race and best of all it is something that I can do even though I am injured, to stay connected to my local running community and then write about it here.

More information on the race series can be found here.

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