I hated exercise. I know it’s good for you and that there’s a thrill to feeling the adrenaline running through your veins but I hated moving in general. I’m a sloth in nature.
But lately I decided I want to be healthier. So I decided to join a fun run with my significant other. I hate jogging, it’s repetitive. So I looked for a fun run with all the cool gimmicks that would actually motivate me to jog for a few kilometers.
So I found out about Sparks Run 2.0. Here’s a link to the event.
As you ran through the course, they would spray high pressure water, colored water, colored powder, and foamy bubbles at you in different stations. I knew I wasn’t a weakass mofo, so we went for the 5k track.
Oh, and the whole race would happen at night, which is rare for a fun run.
We practiced for the run a total of…
And that was a month before the event. The event got delayed by a month, so we ended up being lazy about the whole thing.
It was fun, actually. I was pretty nervous at first but I did some breathing exercises to help calm me down. We were told to go to CS Amphitheatre. They told us that registration would start at 4pm even though the start of the race would still be at 6:30pm. We ended up going there at 4:30pm and it was still too early for anything.
And so after a warm-up, the race started.
We were pretty familiar with the whole track since we studied here for college but for those who aren’t familiar with the place, it’s pretty easy to get lost. Majority of the start of the track is dimly lit. There are barely any lights and it’s kind of creepy if you’re jogging alone.
The first station was being sprayed with colored water. While it was pretty fun to pass through that station, it was composed of a couple of students who used water guns for a few hundred people. So once we got to the track, they were almost out of water, and the whole experience lasted literally 10 seconds.
The second station was a high pressured spray of water. That one was hella fun. They had two fire trucks spraying the road and it just felt fun. And cold. It was night.
The third station was pretty disappointing. Colored powder literally being thrown at you in very tiny handfuls. They only had one visible sack thrown in a very small area of the track. It wasn’t exactly what we were expecting. Literally just one handful for each runner, I think.
The fourth station was the best one. They really had a huge bubble foam machine so the bubbly foam was up to my waist. You could run through it several times, even stay for a while if you don’t really care about your time in the race (which is how we felt since we were doing this for fun).
We only saw two drinking stations but they were sufficient enough.
Once we got to the end of the race, I was getting pretty tired. However, I found a dead frog on the road and I only realized it once I was right beside it. I screamed (aggressively) and ran so fast and screamed so loud, I managed to startle the guy in front of me by running past him so quickly.
I hate frogs. 😦
During the last stretch, a bunch of the organizers would spray you with more water, cheering you on for the last part of the race. We ran, they took our photos and we got our finishers kit (full of goodies from their sponsors: Gatorade, Kratos, a gift certificate to Prime Salon, and a shirt from NewBalance)
Evaluating the experience
Overall, the event was a fun one to attend. They had a concert after the whole event but we didn’t stick around because I was going back to Subic and my SO had family dinner planned out.
I think that their marketing could have been better planned, though. As far as I know, the event was planned by UPCE (UP Circle of Entrepreneurs). I’m pretty sure they delayed the event because they didn’t reach the minimum quota of participants, but this is all speculation. They have a lot of members that could have shared their pubmats on Facebook but I barely saw any.
There were very few participants, to the point that they accepted walk-in registration (which is kind of unheard of in a fun run). When they asked us to line up according to category, I think there were barely 50 people running the 3k track.
The stations could have been livelier. “Sparks Run” is supposed to have the party vibes without the party. So there should have at least been music playing on each station as well as a huge sign to identify that station. Instead, the organizers had to make do with screaming at the participants “I’m going to spray you!” which, props to them, made me laugh and enjoy myself anyway.
The concert had three concessionaires. Or four. I don’t know. They reserved a pretty huge area for a few concessionaire stands.
I don’t really have anything to say about the concert, since we didn’t really attend it.
I think that with regards to organizing the event as well as marketing it, they could have done a better job (???). Though they did take into account insurance and a booth to place your bags, I felt like there was much to improve. Registration took an hour and a half, actual assembly was thirty minutes later. That’s two hours of waiting had you been there at the start of assembly.
They should also know that people love taking photos after the run. Why wasn’t there a tarpaulin backdrop for finishers to take photos at after? It would have immensely improved impact and the number of photos this brand has online.
If you’re not really the type to notice how the event is organized and focused solely on your experience, it’s still pretty fun. The runner kit and the finisher’s kit are both great. I love the shirts (which I could use for future workouts YAAAS) but yeah, they’re going to have trouble pitching this as a source of income for the org in the next GA.