It's so much easier to blog about good races than bad ones. But the bad ones are likely the better learning experiences, so I'm going to force it.
First, let me say that we dominated at the expo. It's giant, and they hide the packets in a back corner, but we were in and out in less than 9 minutes. HK at the exit:
I didn't sleep Sunday night, for non-race-related reasons. I can sleep before races these days. But I was annoyed about something, so I tossed and turned for four hours, gave up, and got up. I saw my watch on the table as we left and figured that I was going into a race undertrained, poorly rested, and a successful outcome was unlikely. Looking at a watch and seeing the paces along the way would only make matters worse. HK felt the same, so we ran naked:
His hand is bigger than my face.
I love the start. There are 18,000+ runners, but up in the front row it's a reunion of sorts. First race of the season means mostly everyone is hugging and kissing hello and catching up. HK lined up in the front with me, but stepped back a few rows as people inched up. I waded back to kiss him and yelled I love you! before the start and got a handful of I love you too, Rachels back. I love our little run community.
I didn't warm up because I was lazy. I ran the first mile with Stacky in 5:58. Not as terribly too-fast as the usual first mile here, which has been 5:20-5:30 in previous years. Stacky had a watch. We purposefully slowed and settled in to what felt like 6:20. I told him 6:30 pace would be a good day for me today. We cruised along till mile 4, then he pulled off to the side to pee. I started getting passed, but I didn't feel like I was slowing, just like people were finding their grooves. I was not. Brigitte and Steve went by and sang some Rihanna for me, and I kept them in sight the rest of the race, but couldn't go with them. Stacky re-caught me, but we were nearing mile 5 and I was running out of gas. Knowing that miles 6-8 were uphill and upwind (30 mph gusts today) didn't help mentally. I started to fade, and he went on.
Miles 6-8 sucked. I passed a handful of blower-uppers, and about a hundred people passed me. I stopped to pee, something I've never done in a running race before, but at that point, I figured it didn't really matter anymore. I think 5 women passed me in the last mile, as I cruised up a hill at what must've been a 9-min pace. In the end, I ran 54:20 (6:38/mi) and placed 13th overall. Two minutes slower than last year.
Half a mile to go.
Wear a watch, stupid.
Don't race out of shape. It just sucks, plain and simple.
Warm up, because the first mile hurts if you don't.
Positive things about this race:
HK took it easy and enjoyed a running race for the first time ever. He was only 4 minutes slower than he was last year, when he raced hard and was miserable. He entertained himself by towering over the small japanese tourists running in front of him when ever he saw a race camera and pretending to be Godzilla. His race photos are going to be interesting.
My new lululemon striped tank is cute.
My headband fell off three times but I didn't lose it.
I have a new do, and a good hair day and a bloody mary pretty much make up for a bad race.