I’m sitting here at WORK writing this, because there’s a major system outage, whereby I can’t send
emails to users outside of my company. Since that is essentially my job function, I get to write this
instead. And have a lot less stress. Really, there is no losing today.
Ok, so I did this race once before, back in its inaugural running in 2011. It really, truly was a train wreck.
I signed up for the 10K, which was short, because the pace car drove the wrong way. Really. That
actually happened. It would have been a legitimate PR otherwise.
So I gave them a year to get their shit together, and then signed up for the 2013 version… because
really, where are you going to find another 10K in the suburbs in February? Exactly.
I had to pick up my packet on Saturday, because race day packet pickup was “sold out,” and the staff
was “overwhelmed,” whatever those mean. But that’s ok, because then I got to have lunch at Real
Urban Barbeque before heading down to the Auto Show.
I’m sure you’ve read the spoiler alert post, so I’ll just cut to the chase… the race!
I parked in a lot about a quarter mile away, walked to the race start about 10 minutes before gun time,
started flipping out thinking that I overdressed, met my shoe twin, and then at 8:15 on the button (NO
NATIONAL ANTHEM, THOUGH! BOO!), we were OFF!
Mile 1: What’s one of the things I hate most about race courses (besides crazy hills, of course)? It’s
unnecessary out-and-backs, normally just placed randomly when they need to add less than a mile of
distance to a race, like .7 in this case. So annoying. Also, as we are coming back, the 5Kers are coming
our way. I REALLY don’t hope I get lapped!
Garmin beeps as we turn onto St John’s (Highland Park main drag). I guess there are no mile markers
Mile 2: I have to pee. This sucks when you still have 4+ miles to go. 7:29
Mile 3: Oh great, here comes the freezing rain that’s in the forecast. But the roads are nice and salted,
and I’m not having any trouble with footing. It’s not a crowded race, so I’m basically running alone. I
don’t hate this TOO much, but you see, I train alone, so when I race, I kind of like for there to be people!
This also marks the first time I have seen a mile marker. And it’s off from my Garmin. 7:27
Mile 4: FINALLY there’s a turn! And some hills. Crap. I’ve run down this street a zillion times, mostly
for the North Shore half. They don’t even faze me. I guess all of my insane workouts in ankle-deep
snow last week are finally paying off. My legs are fatigued, sure, but not enough to make me stop. I’m
still able to run at a very high speed without getting as tired. Getting stronger is awesome. Best mile of the day. 7:23
Mile 5: I should mention that I’m on an INSANE PR pace. Remember when I couldn’t do math well
enough to figure out my PR? Well, I’m going beat it by so much that my crappy math skills won’t even
be a factor!
You know how I was cold at the beginning of the race? Not so much anymore. I’m SO GLAD I went
with capris and a baseball hat. I’m not even putting my hands through the thumb holes of my Nike top
anymore. Hot stuff, coming through! 7:37
Mile 6: We get to the corner, and the race director is standing there telling runners where to go. (I
always feel like she stares at me for way too long, and I can’t figure out why. It’s very unnerving. This
happened to me at packet pickup, and then when I walked to the start, and then now. It would also
happen after the race was over. SO WEIRD.) Anyway.
I turn the corner, and the street is ICE. Like, unsalted, slippery, hidden, treacherous, ICE. I start off
running, and then I start slipping and sliding all over the pace. I take smaller steps, still sliding. I run
on my toes, more slipping. I show off my sailor mouth and curse all down the road. Oh, did I mention
that we merged with the remaining 5Kers? So in addition to trying not to break my bones, I also have
to weave around 5K walkers. All while trying to hang onto my PR. I am so happy that I banked so much
time in the beginning of the race! I’m making a couple of withdrawls right now!
I start running next to this older gentleman who catches me as I’m cursing on the ice. It’s nice to have
someone to run with, for the first time all day. I even share my ice-free snow patches with him. I
couldn’t tell you where we ran or what I saw, because my eyes were glued to the pavement, making
sure that I didn’t fall!
Mile 6.17 (whatever, it’s close enough): I hit the 6 mile marker with 5.86 on my Garmin. CRAP. All I
wanted was a legitimate PR today! I say screw it, and sprint for the finish. A PR is a PR, and I definitely
got close enough! I still have my new old man friend, and I chase him to the finish, while weaving
around 5Kers again. (Couldn’t they have their own lane or something? Frustrating.) Oh, and there was
a part where I had to slow down a bit because there were 2 5Kers doing karate moves and weird drills I
used to do in softball. In the middle of the race. Yep, that actually happened.
But I did it. I passed all of those people and crossed the finish line with a HUGE smile on my face. I killed
my 10K PR, and achieved one of my 2013 goals already. Whew!
FINAL TIME: 46:08
AVERAGE PACE: 7:29
LESSON LEARNED: Don’t do this race again. Why torture yourself? The whole time, you told yourself
how annoying this all was. If you have the urge to spend money, buy a new running shirt or something.
NEXT 10K: I don’t have to do one for the rest of the year! WOO HOO!
|PR happy face, complete with sparkly medal :)|