December. Jingle Bell. 10:00 a.m. start. All things screaming “It’ll be COLD for this race”. Um, no. Not if you’re in OK.
Checked forecasts all week. Gonna be a) hot and, b) windy. OY! Got up, headed out to the driveway in my nightgown. Oh, this was a tank top morning folks. Yes, I might be chilled at the beginning but the second I started running, I’d be fine.
That decision made, pre-race ritual commenced. Coffee (LOVE late race starts, lots of time for “stuff”).
Breakfast, wardrobe decisions. Water to counter balance all the coffee. iPod (with specially created 5K playlist) ready.
Ready to roll at 8:55. Mason running too. No photos of him. Hello, 15 year old boy. That is all.
Drove downtown and ran over for timing chips. Got back in Jeep. It was now 9:15 or so. LOL. Ridiculed people in long-sleeve cotton shirts. I mean, seriously? They would be ON FIRE during the race.
Saw one of Mason’s friends, in a tank-top too! Woot! Totally convinced we were the smart ones.
Sooner than I’d like we were heading to the start line. I have *issues* with the tops of my feet locking up and having SERIOUS pain if I start out too fast. Since I knew this was a 5K (= sprint race) I knew I needed to warm them up while waiting. Lots of jumping around. People probably thought I was too excited for the race. Ha!
Oh, I failed to mention that in my pre-race (errr, FUN run) planning I never charged my Garmin. ARGH! I went old-school and brought Lauren’s Timex.
At least I had a “clock”.
The start of this race includes a hard right approximately 25 steps after you start. Not good given the crowds. For that reason, I stayed up front as much as possible, knowing I could cut hard right, then work left to get to the first left in about a block. It’s all angles and geometry folks. But remember, it’s a FUN run!
The gun goes off and we’re off. No tripping, no falling and the legs/shin/feet are fine. I’m good! Good music. Within about 4 minutes (given the song) I’m huffing. My God, what have I done? How fast am I going? WTH!?!. Oh yea, due south, INTO the wind. ARGH! This will suck. I will never keep this up. And so on.
A few people pass me, but I seem to be an “ok” spot. I just focus on NOT losing all my breath and zoning to music. I know I’m pushing it a bit, but really have no idea. BTW, the watch? Only for final time. I don’t let myself look at it. In the same way that I don’t listen to anyone calling splits.
Mason and I had driven the course the night before. I knew we went to 18th to turn around. Passed my policeman friend, David, at 14th so I high-fived him. Got to 18th and thought “finally NO wind”. Grabbed a water at the water stop, took about 5 walking steps to drink, and continued on. Music was working pretty well at this point. I had loaded 8 songs with a total play time of 30.5 minutes per iTunes. Rocky was the last song. My goal was to never heard it, providing a finish of about 27:30 or so. I knew the song count in my head and would make “deals” with myself as to where I should be at the end of each song.
I was on song 5 and looked down to see the 4K mark (I assume it was for this race) on the street. I risked a glance at my watch and it was at 19:something. That was GOOD for me! Really good! I thought “there is NO way this is the 4K mark, but I’m going to pretend like it is”. The last few minutes really passed quickly and when I got to song 6 I thought I could make it w/out hearing “Rocky”. When I got to 7, I *knew* I could make it.
Saw the finish line, but not the clock, and did all I could to get there. Hit the watch and looked down:
YAY!. Super happy!!! Saw Mason, (22:something) and a few others. Went to get my phone (for photos, really!).
They had a MAJOR jackwagon cluster w/the age groups. Everyone was 4 years older. Um, NOT 50 folks! They spent considerable time trying to fix it and it seems the younger age groups were somewhat fixed but not the older. We went to the post-race party/food thing to wait for awards, since no one knew if they had won or not. Last year, by total luck, no one showed up in my age group and I got 2nd. So, I had no idea this year.
The snacks were good, although we kept laughing about the “hot” chocolate. Ugh. Apparently, if I was 50, I’d be first in my age group! So, once the real results are in, I’ll update. Until then? I bask in the glory. Hee