I registered for the Global Energy Race by accident. No, really. It was a mistake. A member of my MRTT group posted a complimentary code for the run, and I misread the date. I thought the race would be during one of Mr PugRunner’s Orlando conferences and thought it would be a great way to create a mini vacation. I was a couple of months off, however. Oops.
Things worked out: Meghan generously offered me a place to stay and we would run the race together. As far as I’m concerned, it was meant to be.
About the Global Energy Race:
This race is fairly unique. Instead of one race in one city, the Global Energy Race takes place in 36 cities in 22 countries on the same day. For every runner who crosses the finish line, title sponsor Bimbo Bakeries (and its global brands) donates slices of bread to local food banks (for Orlando, the recipient was St. Mary’s Food Bank). More than 120,000 runners participated in the 2019 event worldwide, which is staggering. In Orlando, the race offers a 5K and 10K option, and I imagine other cities gave the same choice.
We arrived at the race around 6:45am and got parking across from Orlando Festival Park. It was a short walk to the staging area, and we were able to go to the bathroom and take in the scene.
It was nice to run into Aaron, who is a co-Best Damn Race Ambassador!
Vendors were handing out bagels for pre-race, and whole loaves of bread (we passed because we didn’t want to go back to the car, nor did we want to run with entire loaves of bread). But I did pose with this bread loaf inflatable, because I had to.
The race started on time, with the 10K runners going out about five minutes before the 5K runners. The morning was cool with a bit of humidity. I was mostly unfamiliar with this area of Orlando, and Meghan explained that we would cover some of the roads we run during the BDR 10K and 5K. She also pointed out that the course for this Global Energy Race had changed: in the past, the longer runners had to make two loops of the 5K course. This year, we would run the 5K course, and then run out to a lake, circle that and come back to the finish line.
I just followed the people in front of me.
That being said, the course was nice (though not flat, and with plenty of Orlando bricks) and shaded for the first half. There were plenty of volunteers handing out water and indicating turns and course directions. The second half of the race went out past an airport and under the overpass. I did like getting to run around the lake: I never get to do that in training (or in most races I’ve run) so it was neat having that experience.
Post Race Party + Final Thoughts
We crossed the finish line, feeling great and moved through the finisher chute. Volunteers handed out cold water, Entenman’s Little Bites in just about every flavor and our 10K medals!
From there, we beelined it to the Toasted Food Truck to claim our free, post-race grilled cheese. Yup. Every runner got one. How fantastic is that?
And then we just pulled up a chair to eat, listen to the music and take a breather.
I liked this race. It was well-organized and well put together. Runners got a ton of swag: race shirt, branded sunglasses, branded arm warmers and a reusable tote bag that folds up super small, in addition to the medal and grilled cheese. Even if I had not received the comp code, the 10K would have been about $30-35, which is a steal for everything that was offered.
Plus, I love the idea of food bank donations based on participation – it’s a great way to help the local communities and I will always support that.
I don’t know if this will make it to my regular rotation, just because it is quite a distance and this time of year is typically so busy, but if schedules allow, I would be happy to run again.
Even by mistake.
Are you in a Global Energy Race city?
Ever walked away with a full loaf of bread as your swag? What about a post-race grilled cheese?