Today was our much anticipated Insane Inflatable 5k run at UMASS Dartmouth!

We had been talking about it for months, and gearing up for what we had heard was an amazingly fun event! We heard right! I signed up to lead the 1130am wave a few months ago and although I had never done a 5k before, I thought this would be a good race to start with.

I arrived early this morning, thinking there would only be staff and volunteers on hand at that time. Wow, I was wrong about that! No one was wasting any time getting the UMASS Dartmouth! People continued to fill in quickly, getting their registration bibs, fueling up on food and drinks and rocking some pretty sweet, colorful running gear.

I met up with Michael Rock and some of the II5k staff, and we decided to try out the first inflatable together. Well, I had my coffee in hand, pocketbook in hand and wasn't at all prepared to 'try out' anything, but did it anyway. I honestly thought about leaving my pocketbook behind, but I had snacks in there, water, my asthma medication just in case, so I wasn't comfortable leaving it behind, and didn't know what else to do with it, so it came with me.

TSM/Loren Petisce

While I was waiting to run, I noticed a rock climbing set up right near the FUN 107 table. I've ALWAYS wanted to try rock climbing, so I was all about that! I went over, signed up and before I knew it, I was climbing rocks, and it was awesome.

TSM/Loren Petisce

Then it was just about time for my wave to begin, so I headed over to the starting line. I was extremely excited to run this thing and see if it was as great as I had heard! I asked the group who was doing a 5k for the very first time, and I was pleasantly surprised to see that I was not alone!

TSM/Loren Petisce

Now off we go! First thing I realized about this race, I DO NOT like slides. Ugh, they remind me of roller coasters which I also hate. The first inflatable was one we climbed then slid down. I am very thankful they did not all have slides. Some of the inflatables were tough, like the one I had to have someone hoist me up because after four tries on my own, I could not lift myself up onto the inflatable! Basically, any inflatable that had climbing, I loved, any that had slides, I did not love. I started out walking, ran a little until my asthma started to bother me, then walked the rest. The terrain wasn't that easy either! It was bumpy, hilly, through some forest, grassy, not as easy as walking on straight asphalt. I did trip on a tree root that magically appeared out of nowhere, but thankfully that was the extend of any injury I got during the 5k.

Right about the 'almost done' mark, I starting thinking to myself, 'when is this flippin' race over??' I was getting tired. Before I knew it, I could see the inflatable with the words 'Finish Line' on it! I got to that point, saw the huge line of people and the massive slide and thought to myself, nah, I'm good. I walked right by and decided I was done with the race at that point. I sat down at the FUN 107 table and while I was there, noticed a bunch of people with the 5k medal on. Then it dawned on me...wait, if I don't do the last obstacle, I'm not gonna get my medal, and I want my medal! To me, the whole thing didn't count unless I had a medal to show for it. So what did I do? Got my butt back up and into the line for the last inflatable. Going up was fun, it was all climbing which I love. Then, there's the massive slide. I was totally dreading it. It feels like my heart is in my belly going down these slides. I went down the slide, I didn't like it, but it didn't matter. I was done! I got my medal, grabbed a water and I walked away with a great sense of accomplishment knowing that I just did my first ever 5k!!

TSM/Loren Petisce

It seemed like the Insane Inflatable 5k was a big hit, and I look forward to doing it again next year, hopefully with more climbing obstacles and less slides!