Well, it was a good race day for me! My race went really well, I think it was the outfit!
I’ll start by confessing my 3 goals for this race:
A: 1:35 or less
B: 1:37:44 or less (previous best)
C: Run the whole race and feel like I gave my all.
The morning started out when I woke up before my alarm at 5:25. It’s amazing how much easier it is to wake up for a race compaired to getting up for work! I got ready as quietly as possible and left. The roads were a little questionable in some places, but I made it to the parking lot just before 7. Some crazy people were waiting in a long line to get into the first lot and the truck in front of me pulled ahead to go to another lot a little further down the road so I followed- no waiting to get in and $2 cheaper – score one for the day!
I found my way inside to packet pick up pretty easily. The lady in front of me was having some trouble since she changed races yesterday (nothing like waiting until the last minute), so I had to find a new line, but then I got my number and set off to find a place to pin it on. I decided to pin it to my skirt and decided to find my way downstairs again. I waited in line for about 20 minutes to use the bathroom one more time before working my way outside to the start. Bathroom lines are a hazard of this business!
I was pretty chilly before the race started, but once I got going, I never once wished I would have switched to full pants instead of capris – I was prefectly comfortable – score 2!
The National Anthem was sung and we were off. The first miles of the race wound around campus and then straightened out along the Mississippi river for a few miles. It was rolling hills and comfortable. I felt really good for the first 4 miles and then we climbed up to go over the river and holy buckets it was WINDY up there!! I’m glad we didn’t have to run that way for long. At the 5 mile mark, there was a relay exchange, so they had timing mats. I thought that would be a nice thing to measure if I held a steady pace through the whole race. As it turns out, I did pretty good, my second half was only about 20 seconds slower than my first – score 3!
The second half of the race started out pretty good. I was just trying to keep the 1:35 pacer in my sights, so far I had always been able to see him (I didn’t know it was a him until the end). I thought if I could see him, I would be sure to finish in the B goal range. Then around mile 8 I lost the pacer. There was a GIGANITC hill – the worst part of it was that you had to climb, climb, climb and then right at the top, we went around a cone and ran right back down! UGH! I knew on the way up that we came back down because we were running alongside people going the other way, but holy buckets it was pretty tough. So I chugged along hoping that the 1:40 pace person wouldn’t catch up. I did end up meeting her on her way up, so I knew I was a few minutes ahead of her, so I felt comfortable again. We turned the corner right after the downhill and climbed again, but this time it was to cross back over the river onto campus. The scenery was nice, I hope I can do this race again next year and maybe things will be starting to green up, I bet it will be prettier then.
Finally we hit mile 9 and after a few twists and turns, the stadium was finally in sight. We crossed the road and finally turned onto the grounds. We snaked through and were in the corridors leading into the stadium and we ran and ran. A girl next to me said “seriously are we ever turning in??” I completely agreed with her – I thought this was the longest mile yet! Then finally it was time – we turned into the tunnel leading to the 50 yeard line! The 1:35 pace was waiting there for the 2 girls next to me (I don’t know why) and I sprinted past them – it was warm and downhill in the tunnel – it felt great to run fast. I sprinted ahead of the 1:35 guy and just kept going. It felt great, it was fun to watch on the Jumbotron too! I love when I have just enough energy left to give a good short sprint to the finish!
I got a water and my (heavy) medal. I made my way up for a quick snack and to get my warm coat that I had checked into sweat check – thank goodness!
I hurried to the car to get warmed back up and then headed to Waconia to catch the end of M’s first soccer game (they played indoor) which was a lot of fun to watch. She did a great job for the very first game she’s ever played. She had fun too and still wants to play next week – score again!!
Thanks for sticking through this long post – clearly I’m still on a runner’s high!!