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5K for Earth Day and the Awesomeness of Patagonia and Krissy Moehl

Nissan Leaf pace car
Had a great time at the 5K for Earth Day this morning - first race I've done in Humboldt Park and I really liked spending some time walking around the park before and after (I haven't spent much - or any - time there before today). The race had a really "green" theme (appropriately) and all the runners seemed really into it. For such a small race they had a ton of partners too - including a Nissan Leaf pace car, water from Green Planet Water (I'm not clear on why all companies don't start using their bottles!), GOBI Energy (who supplied the electricity via a solar-powered DJ truck called SolarBeatz), the Illinois Lottery (scratch tickets in the goodie bag and each mile marker was a person dressed as a Powerball).

Solarbeatz truck. The sign says "DANGER BLASTING SOLAR BEATS"
QR Code on the top right
Anyway it was a really great (small) race and everyone there was having a great time. It felt like a mix between a typical 5K, a green expo and a neighborhood party. And there was a pretty cool addition to the running bib that I've never seen before: a QR Code on the top right that you could scan after the race that takes you directly to the race results.

My full review is up at Newcity.com.


But I also wanted to talk about something else. Last night my wife and I went over to Patagonia to check out a talk given by Krissy Moehl, aptly titled "Ultra Trail Running: An Evening With Krissy Moehl." Krissy was really engaging and gave a great talk about her experiences with ultra running before taking questions from the audience. And I have to say that this was probably one of the best Q&A sessions I've ever seen. Every person in the audience was really paying attention and all the questions were well thought out (as were the answers Krissy gave).

Krissy Moehl at Patagonia
Here are two of my favorite things she said:
  • "There's no bad weather, only bad gear."
  • "Competition is with and not against. We're competing with each other, not against each other."
I've been interested in ultra trail running for a while but I've always felt too intimidated to actually try one out - marathons have been enough of a challenge for me up to this point. But being in a room of runners (with a few of them being ultra runners themselves) watching an ultra champion talk about it got me pretty inspired. We'll see what this leads to...

But on top of the excellent presentation and Q&A session, Patagonia was generous enough to do a drawing for some running gear, probably one of the best giveaways I've ever seen a store do. They gave away four pairs of trail running shoes (2 guys, 2 girls) and then two full trail running outfits (1 guy, 1 girl).

And luck was with me last night, because I actually won the full outfit!

Here's what that entails:
So now I really have no excuse to not be out on the trail. Coincidentally, my uncle (who's been an ultra runner for over a decade) is looking for a pacer for the Arkansas Traveller 100 in October. Sounds like a good chance to get some ultra experience without actually having to take on the full distance!

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