Well, I did indeed run my race today. I know I've mentioned a few times that the weather forecast was miserable and let me tell you...it did not disappoint. It pretty much did exactly what the meteorologists said it would. Why does it seem like they only get the forecast correct when the weather is going to be horrible?? To tell you the truth, as the forecast grew worse and worse with each passing day, I finally got so angry that I told myself I was going to run this race NO MATTER WHAT. A little wind, snow and sub-freezing temps were not going to deter me.
So, I woke up this morning, ate my pre-run breakfast of peanut butter toast and bananas and got all my "gear" on. With each race I run, it seems like I have more and more "stuff". All the clothing, my iPod, my Garmin (watch), my Road ID bracelet (in case I pass out or get trampled by other runners), my sunglasses, my GU (electrolyte gels for long races), a recovery bar for the drive home, a bottle of water, oh and my race bib. Kind of ridiculous, really. In fact, I was so pre-occupied with making sure I had everything I needed that I forgot my phone and my wallet (which contains my license). Nice. Runners are a needy bunch, what can I say.
And speaking of my race bib...this year they put our timing chips on the bibs themselves instead of the usual chip you attach to your shoes. I was kind of excited about this because the shoe chips are a hassle. That is, until I read the dissertation on what you must and must NOT do to ensure the bib chip works appropriately. Such as, make sure the bib chip is not over/under/beside any zippers or other metals. Ummm, do you know any winter racing gear that DOESN'T have a zipper?? I sure don't. Whatever. I tried to keep mine as far away from the THREE zippers that were on my pullover as possible and hoped I wouldn't blow up from all the dangerous zipper/bib chip interaction.....drama.
Here is a pic taken right before I left. No, that is not a spaceship that landed on my chest. Those are the reflectors on my pull-over.....
I'll stop rambling now and get to the actual race. It was FREEZING. I actually kept my winter coat on until the start of the race and then put it on some random bench neaby and hoped it would still be there when I got back (thankfully, it was). There was a small area inside the State Farm building (SF sponsored the race) that they opened up to the runners. People were crammed in there like sardines trying to keep warm. Once the race got started and I was moving, it wasn't so bad.
Luckily, the freezing cold temps had made what would have been mud into nice, hard, dry ground. Otherwise, it would have been a mess. And with almost 800 people packed onto the narrow trail we were on, that would have been a nightmare. The race was pretty uneventful to tell you the truth (I'm sure that is becoming obvious from my incessant blabber about nothing).....until we hit the final 3/4 mile. It was almost all uphill, much of it was into the wind, and the light snow that had been falling for most of the race was now coming down pretty hard and in the form of HUGE flakes that kept falling in my eyes. I had to run a good chunk of the final mile with my eyes closed. I was so glad when it was over.
Ok, time to toot my own horn. I showed that race who was boss. I wanted to finish in 1:25:00 or under (an 8:30 min/mile pace or better). I finished in 1:23:06 (an 8:19 per mile pace). I still can't believe it. I think I just wanted to get out of the cold :-) I placed 249 out of 794 overall, 67 out of 429 females and 8 out of 64 in my age division. Yee haw!!! This is why running is so darn addicting.....there is always room to improve. You can always get faster and gain more endurance. And when you have races where you feel like you really are getting faster....the hook goes in that much deeper. Love it.
My boys had some quality daddy-son time while momma was away. And a mini-photo shoot ensued. Here are a couple of pics.
Doesn't he have the best smile? He has gorgeous teeth. Strangers have actually commented about how pretty his teeth are.
Ok, that's all. Sorry to put you through my tedious running stories. I promise I won't talk about it anymore for awhile. Well, at least until my next race in two weeks :-)