Saturday morning, I got up at 6:45. The only time I am ever up at 6:45 on a weekend is if I am a) flying somewhere (I always end up on the stupid early ones) or b) still up from the night before. Now, I can add “going to a race” as one of those reasons. I’m not entirely sure WHY races all have to be so early, but since they are, I just figure I have to get used to it. I got up, took a looooong wakeup shower, and got dressed. After getting Zliten up and getting my stuff together we bolted out the door later than we had hoped.
Halfway there, I realize that I had forgotten just about the most important thing besides my shoes – my zune. Zliten was kind enough to drop me off so I could get my packet and warm up and run home and get it for me. He made it back with about 2 minutes to spare. After a hug and a smooch and a transfering of stuff, a good luck, and a pre-race picture, I smooshed in with the 6399 other people waiting for the race to start. They had waves of people starting by time, but since I got to the line late, I was stuck back with the 13 minute mile people and it took me almost 3 minutes to cross the start line. But I did, and I was off!
The first mile was dodging and weaving through slower runners. However, it was through a route that we’ve biked each week, so I was familiar with the terrian. I was studying the mile markers on the course the night before but since I stink at spacially knowing where I am by reading a top down map (seriously, I get lost at the mall even with those “you are here” signs…it’s sad), I couldn’t remember which streets we hit during which miles. I kept thinking that the first mile was the looooongest ever, until I saw the second mile marker. Whew, ok, I thought. 1/3 done, I can do this. I looked at my watch – and holy cow, I was only about 16 minutes in. I was making amazing time!
My thought going in to the race was to take the first, third, and fifth miles fast and the second and fourth miles pretty easy. Then on mile 6, I was going to see how I felt, and either finish strong or just get through it. That plan totally went out the window. I just played it by ear. When I felt good, I picked up the pace. When I started to feel a cramp coming on, I slowed down. I booked down the hills and struggled up them, although I keep getting better at them each race.
Then came the sixth mile. Oh, the hill. Ooooohhh, the hill. It was a killer. I didn’t stop, I kept running, but man, I wanted to walk it. I saw lots of people walk it. I’m just happy I did not succumb, but it also took me a while to recover after it flattened out. The last mile was seriously the longest.mile.evar. When I started running up the last street I picked up the pace even though I was hurting still from the hill. When I saw the gate I just gave it all I had and started sprinting as fast as I could. I crossed the gate at around 59-something minutes, and I knew that I hadn’t just met my goal, I totally shattered it. I totally did the cheesy fist pumping thing at the finish because I was so freaking excited. I ended up with a chip time of 56:54. Results here (might be temporary)! I ended up placing 29th in my age group out of 80. I also finished 483rd out of 1126 people. Not bad! I even beat our governor Rick Perry.
I did a cooldown walk around, found Zliten in the crowd, and then found the car and went home. The camera died at the finish so I don’t have a picture, but we re-created it in the backyard. Then, we went to The Omlettry, and I had the most delicious gingerbread pancakes and homefries EVAR. Later, I found the results and got happy and also found this coverage on the race. Hey, I wasn’t just a wuss. The elite runners said it was a difficult course too!
The Ride and The Ridiculous Feast:
After breakfast and relax time, we contemplated the day. There was Eeyore’s Birthday Party going on, but we decided against it. Our “exhausted” plan was to just chill at home, but I wasn’t too beat, so we got on the bikes and rode to our work poker game which was about 7 mile away. Yes, I know I’m insane. We rode fast and it was a hilly route, so I was definitely ready to be NOT moving when we got there. We sat down and got our poker on. Sadly, it was getting late after about 3 hours of playing, so I either had to get aggressive and knock people out (which I am NOT good at), or lose. I ended up going all in against the chip lead on a hand I normally wouldn’t have, and I lost. Oh well. We took a different route home and man, my legs were SCREAMING at first. After the first 10 minutes though I was back to being alright though I knew my body was pretty tired. We ended up taking a busy street with no sidewalk, so it was a scary-but-exciting offroading adventure.
After putting in my calories burnt for the day and seeing that it was just over 2k for the DAY, we decided mass quantities of food was in order. We headed to the Golden Corrall (yes, disgusting, I know) and I consumed lots of salad, veggies, and other not-so-healthy stuff (but I was really craving a ginormous salad so that’s what I started with). The plate of deserts was probably over the top, but ya know…race day = no guilt.
I tried to have a few drinks with some friends to unwind, but it just wasn’t in the cards after the day I had. I think I’m still recovering! Sunday, let me tell ya, I did laundry, got groceries, and NOTHING ELSE. What did you do this weekend? Anything….legendary?