This wasn’t a half marathon, but we chose to include it here for two reasons.
- As a two-person team, our total distance run was close to half marathon distance (15.5 miles for each of us).
- Planning for an event such as this might require some forethought, so hopefully this post will help future runners successfully prepare for a day of running.
We signed up for Peyton’s Wild & Wacky 10X5K Ultra for a few different reasons. First, it allowed us to challenge ourselves as runners in a whole new way. Second, it involved both a day of running and a day of socializing with other runners. Most importantly, it allowed us to honor a family and the race’s namesake, Peyton Moore, who encouraged those around him to fall in love with running and physical fitness.
This event had a number of registration options for runners of all fitness levels. The race was designed so that participants could run one 5K every hour on the hour from 7 am to 4 pm. Runners could choose to run one 5K (at 11 am) or participate in the 10X5K ultra as an individual, a two-man team, or a five-man team.
Packet pickup for this event was held on the Friday before the race from 3pm to 7pm at Private iPrint Promotions in Mt. Pleasant, SC. All participants received a drawstring backpack that included a gender specific tech shirt (with artwork designed by the amazing Peyton Moore, himself), race bibs, reusable coffee cups, LED keychain flashlights (which would come in handy later!), windup toys, letter openers, pens, and some advertisements for future races. As a two-man team we received two swag bags, but one bib to share between the two of us.
Runners also had the option of picking up their packets on race morning.
The event was held at Middleton Place Woodlands where runners ran on what would have been the hard-packed trails of the property. Anyone participating in the event in the future, know that Middleton Place Woodlands is across the street from the popular tourist destination, Middleton Place.
Volunteers were directing traffic into the grassy field where runners parked their cars and, for those who were participating in the ultra, set up tents for the day. We recommend bringing a tent and some beach chairs no matter what the day’s weather may be. The tent will shade you from bright sun or shelter you from any possible rain. In our case, it sheltered us from some showers later in the day, though there was little to protect us from the deluge the began at 6:50 am, mere minutes before the first lap of the race began.
The race start began a few steps from our parked cars. Being only one week into daylight savings time, and the weather being what it was meant that this race began in both the dark and pouring rain. Race organizers had the forethought to suggest that runners bring headlamps, but when the battery died on ours at about the same time the rain began, the tiny LED keychain from packet pickup became the only way to light our way through the dark trails.
Due to the pouring rain, the hard-packed trails became giant mud puddles, so lap one of the race was the slowest for many of us. For many runners, it set a wild and wacky tone, fulfilling the prophecy of the race’s name. Most of us crossed the finish line with mud splattered up to our knees and shoes that would be retired after the event’s conclusion. We took a few minutes to laugh at ourselves and pose for some ridiculous “after” photos, which became a tradition for us following each lap of the race.
Ultra runners partook in the free food as well, though we tried not to gorge ourselves so much that we couldn’t run the remaining portion of our laps. This wasn’t always easy as we had the option of eating barbeque sandwiches or choosing from the well-stocked registration table that offered up bananas, cookies, bacon, fig bars, pretzels, animal crackers, fruit snacks, pickles, and bottles of water to all runners.
Another awards ceremony was held around 5 pm for ultra participants where awards were given out to the top two-man team, top five-man team, top male and female masters runners, and top individual runners of both genders. We think awards were five-deep for individual male and female runners. All ultra team members also received finisher medals for being part of the event.
The awards ceremony and final hour of the day were the most emotional. For many runners, it meant they had mastered a new kind of challenge, which is moving in and of itself. When the Moore Family spoke of their son, Peyton, the legacy he left behind, and the people he continues to inspire after only nine short years of life, we felt like we had run for a greater purpose. We were proud to honor a great kid, a great family, and be part of a great event.
Had we known what we were getting into for the day, which involved running 15.5 miles each as a two-man team through mud and rain, we might not have signed up. Fortunately, we didn’t know what we were getting into, and we were part of one of the most fun, challenging, satisfying, and meaningful running events around.
Tips for a Successful Peyton’s Wild and Wacky 10X5K Ultra
- Bring a tent (like the kind people use for tailgating). It will shelter you from the elements, no matter what they are.
- Bring multiple pairs of shoes, with at least one pair being old. At least one of us would have cried if a brand new pair of shoes became a muddy, crusty, unusable mess.
- Run with a team or multiple teams. We liked the challenge of running as a two-person team, but liked hanging out all day with our friends who were running on a five-person team.