Thursday and Friday were planned rest days, even if Thursday was far from restful. Work was crazy and I had my first class that night. I got good news at work but I was too tired to muster up much enthusiasm. Thankfully, Friday was better. I finished the day with some lovely carb heavy French toast and getting my things together for today’s race. I was excited!
I woke this morning with my usual nervous stomach. Since my goal today was to just have fun, what did I have to be nervous about? Nothing but try telling that to my tummy. I have trouble eating food before any race, even my half marathons; I tried a Belvita cracker today. Not a lot but it was still better than usual, I ate 2! Since my race photographer (aka mom) has been complaining that I run every race in all black, she claims it makes it hard to find me in a crowd, I picked out some of the brightest clothes I own.
The race was about 45 minutes away, so I set out with enough time to meet up with my friends about 30 minutes to the starting whistle. Yea for race buddies!!!! My friend, C and her husband are the ones that have run the most races with in the past but it’s been since a Turkey Trot debacle last November that we have made our schedules work. Hopefully we are back on track now!
This race claimed to be in its 25th year but it need some better organization. The starting line was a chalk line and there was no electronic timing. Yea for the Nike+ app! When picking up your race bib, you were told to fill out the bottom portion. Not being told why, I figured it was for a raffle and didn’t bother since I never win anyways. There were no race shirts or finishing medals. About 15 minutes to go time, my friends and I were catching up when a very perky announcer and friends held an impromptu jazzercise class as a race warm-up! Definitely a race first for me.
The horn sounded and we were off! I wore the wrong belt so the Nike app had 13 seconds on it before the race officially started, oops. Told myself to remember to subtract that off later. We started out on the street headed for the beach and the boardwalk. About 2/3 a mile in, we cut across a parking lot to get to the boardwalk. I saw some painted arrows on the outside of the lot so I followed those while everyone else cut across. I was thinking that everyone was trying to cut a little mileage off along the way, but nope, think I followed the 10k line. Both races merged at the boardwalk so I was back on track. Just in time for Nike to say my mile 1 stats. Mile 1- 8:38, hell yeah, a new mile record for me!
Running the boardwalk my music crapped out. I think I am done with particular music app. I debated if I wanted to fix it or just run without but eventually slowed down to start another playlist and snap a picture or two. Like I said, today’s goal was to have fun. Still I felt I was maintaining a decent pace. That all ended when we hit the dunes.
Running on hard pack sand at the ocean line is kind of nice. Running on soft loose dune sand? That sucks, literally and figuratively. I felt like every time I tried to lift my foot, the sand pulled it back. Plus the trail narrowed to single file and it was almost impossible to pass anyone. It turned into a bottleneck, not fun. Once out of the dunes, we had to cross more soft sand to get to the hard pack. Once there the 5k runners went right and the 10k went left to the pier. I went right across the beach to the next left which brought us to more soft sand. Once we crossed that, we went up the ramp and were then back on the street. I felt like I had 2 pounds of sand in my shoes.
Running past the last water station, I felt tired. That sand had taken a lot out of me and the weather was muggy. Because of the race the traffic was backed up on the street, but instead of the drivers yelling angrily, they were giving shout outs and encouragements to the runners! It was great, you would start to drag a little and then someone would yell out “keep going, you look awesome”! Can I hire people to do that at every race?
I rounded the corner to the end and crossed the finish line at 30:03. Turns out bottom portion of my bib was needed to staple to the card that said I finished 15th. Oops, nobody told me that! After a little lecture by the lady at the finish line, they just wrote my name and age on the card and placed it in a little bin. Met up with my mom and waited for my friends to come across. They came in a few minutes behind me. 🙂 Awesome! As we were chatting, we figured I went a little too far in the beginning. Nike had me at 3.2, so I didn’t get really lost. We did a head count and C and I figured out we were some of the first women to cross the finish line. So did that mean we made age division leaders? The awards ceremony wasn’t supposed to start until 10:15, did we want to wait that long?
We also figured out that the race clock was a little off. My mom said that it had stopped working at some point while we were running, and their solution was to bang on it. Umm, ok then. So Nike had me at 30:11 for 3.2 miles. Take off the first 13 seconds and that is 29:58. Hmmm, I like that number better. Hehe, either works but oh well it was still fun.
My friends had to leave before the awards ceremony since 10:15 turned into 10:45. It was so cold waiting around. Again, the race could have been better organized. They finally started announcing the age groups. I was waiting for the 30-39. Starting with 3rd place and it was C! Luckily they let me pick up her medal. I placed 2nd for our age group. Woo hoo!!! This is an upside to smaller, local races.
My mom and I finished the day with a yummy lunch and a little shopping. I picked up 2 more pairs of bright shorts. I am really liking these Nike Dash shorts. Also, I really should not be allowed anywhere near a Dick’s, so many pretty things.
All in all would have been a great day if it wasn’t for how sick I got when I got home. I am calling it food poisoning because I do not have the time to be sick. So now that I have taken all your time with this post, I am going to curl into a ball and get some rest. I will run again Monday.
I hope everyone has a truly amazing weekend!!!!
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