I signed up for this race to see how far (or not far) I’d fallen after The Great Whooping Cough Catastrophe of 2013.
I wasn’t particularly enthused about this 10K, for a number of reasons:
– Paul, who had originally said he’d sign up for the race, opted instead to stay in bed while I got up at 6 a.m. on Labor Day.
– I ate 62 steamed clams—my new PR!—for dinner the night before, and my body was not pleased with the amount of protein (and iron) I’d pumped into it…not to mention all the melted butter I ate, which practically was coming out my pores on race morning. Blerch.
– It was thunderstorming when I woke up.
– When it stopped storming, it was 70 degrees, with 90% humidity.
– I ran really well at this race last year and didn’t want to post a slower time.
Well, I did—exactly one minute slower (45:49).
But! I’m not letting this totally destroy my confidence. Because… (I really love my bullets today, huh?)
– I made the total rookie mistake of going out much, much too fast…not just for the conditions, but for my ability at that distance even under the best conditions. I ran a 6:51 first mile…then 7:17, 7:22, 7:39 (now entering the slower-than-half-marathon-pace zone), 7:42, and 7:40. Whoops. Despite my total disintegration, I still passed more people in the second half than passed me, so I wasn’t the only idiot out there.
– I won my age group. Yeah, yeah, that depends on who shows up…but still.
– I just barely edged out a woman who just barely edged me out at this same race last year. I have no idea what her training has been like—maybe she got whooping cough too?—but still…kind of heartening.
– The winning time (35:47) was a minute slower than last year’s winning time (34:45).
And here is a photo of me and my coworker Megan, who also won her age group. (In a blazing-fast 40:58, the kind of time I can only dream of running, someday.)