The first Sunday of every month Ypsilanti Running Company (YRC) hosts a Donut Dash. The event consists of a 5k run followed by some donut eating. You can run for fun and eat however many donuts you want at the end. Or, if you want to try get your name on the wall of fame, you can do the timed 5k run followed by 5 donuts.
When I went in December I opted to eat just one donut. I was in the middle of my post-marathon break and knew that I would not be able to run as fast as I wanted. I also really, really did not want to throw up in front of a bunch of people I was meeting for the first time. But this weekend, I was ready to compete.
I should mention that this race has a bit of a wildcard element to it. It is not a closed course (it’s not even a marked course). So you need to keep an eye out for cars and know the route. The route runs 1.55 miles from YRC to Dom Bakeries. When you get to Dom’s you have to get in line, buy your donuts, and carry them back to YRC. There is no telling how busy they might be or how long this will take.
Since I had already completed my speed work for this week, I opted to run at tempo pace for at least the first half of the race. Once I had my donuts I would pick it up a little. I didn’t want to push to hard because I needed to start eating as soon as I finished running.
That gap in the middle where my pace is 0 is when I was buying donuts. I’m really happy with how the pace felt during this race! Challenging, of course, but no where near actual 5k just-kill-me-now pace. If you take off the 1:13 of donut buying, my time for the 5k is 22:03, just one minute behind my PR.
I memorized all of the turns the morning of the race with a handy mnemonic device (COW: Congress to Owendale to Washtenaw). And repeated that to myself for most of the run. It was a good thing too since I lead the race the entire way (to be fair, Cam, the fastest guy on the Wall of Fame, was there and could have easily beaten me. His run AND donut time is just 45 seconds slower than my run time!).
Also a bag of 5 donuts is surprisingly heavy. How anyone carries a bottle of water while running is beyond me. I had to keep switching hands and one donut got completely smushed.
My official run time was recorded as 23:15, but the clock doesn’t stop! I immediately got to work on my donuts (3 cake, 2 yeast). Cake donuts (my favorite of the donuts!) were a bad choice. Although they are one of the smaller donuts they are so dry and I was already a bit parched from the run. Yeast donuts were easier and I will probably do all yeast next time.
I kind of thought I could put away 5 donuts in 5-8 minutes. Oh god I was wrong. The first two went okay. But by the third I was really slowing down. I was stuffed. My mouth was so dry. And I was certain I was about to puke. Instead I just kept shoving donuts in my mouth. I finished my donuts in 11:39 for a combined time of 34:54. Fast enough for a new women’s record! Woot!
I am really happy to report that I did not throw up! But I did spend the rest of the day feeling awful. My stomach basically hurt all day and the sugar crash in the afternoon was brutal. I started making broad proclamations about how I would never eat donuts again. I told Kendall that I was never doing the challenge again (unless someone beats my time, of course!).
Now that I’ve had a few days to come around, I’m actually kind of excited to do it again. I can at least go sub 10 on the donut portion, right?
Unfortunately the next two months are out. The May and June Donut Dashes are just too close to other races. I can’t lose sight of setting a 5k PR this spring.