Race #412 – S. Ray Lowder Spring Spirit 5k – Lincolnton, NC – 03/16/18

The daytime temperatures were great this weekend and there were two evening races (one on Friday and another on Saturday) so I decided to run one or both of those instead of the usual Saturday morning race. First up was this 5k in Lincolnton at Ray Lowder Elementary School, which unsurprisingly included a lot of kids from the school running the race. I like having lots of kids involved although it can get a little crowded at the starting line.

I felt good with the warm weather but less than a half mile into the race I ended up walking on the first uphill climb, and several times after that as well. I’d like to cut the walk breaks down but for now I’ll just try getting to the finish line. My finish time of 23:42 was an improvement over last week, so there’s that, but I’m hoping to drop a few more pounds before next month’s Cooper River Bridge 10k and hopefully improve my pace a little before then.

Race Number:  412

Race Name:  S. Ray Lowder Spring Spirit 5k

Location:  Lincolnton, North Carolina

Date:  March 16, 2017 (Friday 6 p.m.)

Race Rating:  83

Winners (Top 10 Overall):



Weather at Start:


Click Here for Race Results


My Stats:

  • Time:  23:42
  • Pace:  7:38
  • Age Group:  1 of 3
  • Overall:  17 of 231
  • Average Heart Rate:  150
  • Maximum Heart Race:  167
  • Age Graded Equivalent Time:  18:19 (70.89%)


3 – Chip & Gun Timing: (3 points if yes)
0 – Starting Mat: (2 points if yes)
2 – Water Stops: (0)none (2)normal (5)extras [Gu, sports drink, etc.]
1 – Course Marking: (0)bad (1)good
3 – Course Scenery: (0-5) 1=bad and 5=fantastic
1 – Mile Markers: (0)poor or none (1)normal (2)with clocks or time called out
2 – Volunteers: (0)too few (2)good
6 – Finish line: (0-9) 0=bad and 9=spectacular!
0 – Certified Course: (0)no (2) yes
2 – Correct Distance: (0)no (2)yes
1 – Partly or fully on unpaved roads: (0)yes (1)no

2 – Cost: (0)expensive (2)reasonable (5)cheap!
3 – Race Day Registration: (0)no (3)yes

2 – Posted online within 24 hours: (0)no (2)yes
1 – Easy to find results: (0)no (1)yes

2 – 3 deep awards: (2)yes (0 for anything less)
5 – 5-year age groups (5 points) (0 for anything less)
1 – 14 and under group (1)
1 – 65+ group (1)
1 – 70+ group (1)
0 – Top Overall M/F: (0)none or first only (2)top 3 or better
0 – Masters Category(40+): (0)no (2)yes
0 – Grand Masters Category (50+): (0)no (3)yes
0 – Senior Grand Masters Category: (0)no (5)yes

2 – Overall Winner Awards: (0)none (2)yes (5)excellent
2 – Age Group Awards: (0)none (2)yes (5)excellent
5 – Door Prizes or Drawing: (0-9)
3 – Finisher Medals for All Finishers: (0)no (3)yes [*for kids] (5)really cool medals

4 – Food for Race Participants: (0-10 with 5 being average)
5 – Entertainment: (0)no (1-9)yes
2 – Finisher times posted after race: (0)no (2)yes

0 – Porta Potties: (0)no (1)limited, long lines (2)plentiful
2 – Indoor Restrooms: (0)no (1)limited, long lines (2)plentiful

2 – T-Shirts: (0)no (2)yes
3 – Design: (1-5)
2 – Material Quality: (1-3)
0 – Discount for no-shirt option: (0)no (2)yes

0 – Professional Photography: (0)no (5)yes
x – Prices: (1)expensive (3)reasonable (5)cheap
0 – Free Photographs (newspaper, etc.): (0)no (1-10)yes

2 – Close to Start: (2)yes (0)no
2 – Close to Finish: (2)yes (0)no
2 – Plenty of spaces: (2)yes (0)no
2 – Free Parking: (2)yes (0)no

2 – Shelter from Inclement Weather (needed or not): (0)no (2)yes
0 – Swag (free socks, water bottles, etc.): (0)no (2)yes, some (5)excellent
0 – Part of race series or Grand Prix: (0)no (2)yes
0 – Kids Fun Run: (0)no (2)yes
x – Miscellaneous not covered above: (-10 to +10)

TOTAL:  83

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Race #75 – Healthy Heart Race 5k – Lincolnton, NC – 02/27/10

The Healthy Heart Race 5k was the only road race within about 50 miles of Charlotte today and it was good to see quite a few runners from Charlotte, Shelby, Gastonia, and other surrounding areas coming out to support the cause. Organized by two young girls who lost their fathers, Howard Wiseman and Larry Beaver, at an early age to heart disease in the past couple of years, the race was held to remember their fathers and to support the American Heart Association. Just before the awards ceremony both girls spoke a little about their fathers, and it was a good reminder for all of us that we shouldn’t take life for granted.
It turned out to be a nice day for running. They used the same course as one of the races that has been established for several years in Lincolnton, winding through several neighborhoods and right through the middle of town, with runners actually running on the sidewalk. Fortunately the sidewalk was fairly wide when it needed to be, such as those times when people were walking out of some of the downtown shops and didn’t know there was a race going on. I was 8th overall so the largest crowd of runners was behind me and I’m not sure how things went if there were large groups of runners, but I didn’t hear any complaints.
The first mile of this race was tough, with lots of turns, and with every turn, a new hill to climb. With my recent emphasis on monitoring my heart rather than my speed, I climbed all of the hills a bit slowly, taking about 7 and a half minutes for the first mile, hoping to make it up with some downhill in the final 2 miles. It worked out and I was glad to see the second and third miles had more of a gradual decrease in elevation and I was able to run both of those miles about a minute faster than the first. My final time was 20:52, which was a little better than both races last weekend, so I’m happy with the time.
Race Rating
6 – 1-10  Website (Information, results, registration, photo links, etc.)
3 – 1-10  Awards (Quality of medals, trophies, etc.) (1 to 10)
5 – 1-10  Awards Presentation (PA system, winning times, etc.) (1 to 10)
2 – 1-10  Food for Race Participants (1 to 10)
4 – 1-10  T-Shirts (1 to 10 with 5 being average)
4 – 4/6   Part of Race Series (Grand Prix, etc.) (6=Yes and 4=No)
0 – 0/5   Professional Photography (5=Yes and 0=No)
4 – 4/6   Chip Timing (6=Yes and 4=No)
7 – 3/7   Certified Course (by USA Track & Field) (7=Yes and 3=No)
7 – 1-10  Course (1 to 10 with 5 being average)
8 – 1-10  Parking (1 to 10 with 5 being average)
4 – 1-10  Entertainment (1 to 10 with 5 being average)
10 – 0-10  Age Groups (10 if 5-year groups; 0 if 10-year groups)
5 – 0/5   Indoor Shelter from Elements (0 if none; 5 if provided)
5 – 1-10  Bathroom Facilities
5 – 0-10  Other (5 extra points for low race fee — $12 with no increase on race day)
TOTAL – 79
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