Nonetheless, we found a parking spot, got our chips and bibs, and heading to the bathroom. We hesitated at the LONG line, but got a quick tip that the bathroom over the hill had no line. It was close to our car, so we headed there, deposited the rest of our stuff in the car and headed out for a warm-up run. It really bothered us that so many women were just standing around. No one was warming up. I personally do not stretch before I run, but I also do a little jog. Good thing I did, because the chip was flopping and I needed to fix it. I would have either had to run with it that way or stop at the beginning of the race had I not tested out my gear. I decided to run with my water belt because my last 5k I did not and regretted it.
Jeanette and I had talked about running together, but I knew she would be faster than me. We both started near the front, but the "traffic" at the beginning was awful. Jeanette is a pro at racing and weaved in between the slower runners and was off. I did my best to follow her, but kept repeating over and over in my head, "RUN YOUR RACE, not Jeanette's". It was a nice course with lots of shade. Some of it had trails, so it felt nice to get off of the pavement, but the gravel hills made me very nervous. I was afraid I would turn my ankle and WAS NOT going to risk this on a 5k with marathon training right around the corner.
Lola beeped 8:00 for the first mile - good, but still too fast for me. At Jeremy's Run and the Germantown 5-miler I ran my first mile around 7:30, so I was thrilled I did not start of too fast... but I should have been running a little slower. Most of mile 2 was in the woods, and let me just get on my soap box for a minute:
If you decided to disobey the rules and run with your headphones on, PLEASE.... for EVERYONE's safety, do not have the volume up so loud that you cannot hear other runners. Twice I was pushed off the trail because the runner in front of me had headphones on and could not hear me approaching. Jeanette, who was in my sight, said she had a runner near her that she could hear her music the WHOLE time.... seriously, does your volume need to be that high that every runner can here your music? Some of us follow the rules - especially when they said right at the start line -NO HEADPHONES!
Okay, I feel better. Also, at about 1.5 miles there was a water stop.... perfect timing. I yelled for water since they seem to ONLY be offering Gatorade and the last volunteer in the line yelled back: "I got the water!" I grabbed it - took a sip and toss the rest on my body.
Like I mentioned, I could see Jeanette the whole time, but was really struggling with not trying to catch her. I was running my race. Lola beeped 9:14 for mile 2... I was getting better. The final part of the race was around a beautiful garden. 85% was in the shade, but the garden patrons looked at us runners like we were crazy when we were running around them. I wish they had closed the path as strollers and children were in my way twice. I trudged on and new I was coming up on 2.5 miles... and then I saw it... I saw a crowd of runners who were just now entering the garden. I started to swell up. The last time I ran this race, that was me. I was one of those runners who was being passed by the runners who were almost finished thinking... wow.... they are fast. Now I was one of "those" runners - YAY!
The last part of the race was hard for me for three reasons:
- I wanted to run fast, but it was a gravel trail and I was afraid of my footing and did not want to twist my ankle. I am a great finishers (if I may say so) - I ALWAYS sprint in... taking out at least 1 person - this time, my goal was not to get passed, but not to hurt myself.
- I was afraid that I may pick up my speed to fast and not have enough umphf to finish.
- I wish I had not wore my water belt for this race, because there was another water stop at mile 2.3 - nice!!! The water belt made me really hot.
And then my post race event started to happen: I ALWAYS dry heave after I stop. I try to walk around... it wasn't until a couple of races ago that I figured it out. I do not spit while I run and when I stop, my throat is filled with spit and I have to get it out. People around me think I am going to vomit... lovely volunteers want to help... but after about a minute, I am FINE. I can drink and I walk away embarrassed that I just did that. Not sure how I can rectify this, but I do not think spitting along the race will help. Any ideas.
Time: 26:42 (Jeanette got 26:17)
59th out of 454 runners
7/51 (age group)