Fast forward to Sunday. I headed to the Shuffle Expo with Jennifer. We got our bibs and shirts rather quickly and then looked for Maggie to get the team bib. We were running as part of the Wurst Running Club Ever. We found Maggie down the first aisle we tried and chatted with her for a bit. While we were there an announcement came from the PA at the Nike/Fleet Feet stations... There was a wedding proposal in progress. We stopped and watched the crowd gather around and a one of the Fleet Feet club runners proposed to a fellow runner. It was cute, but doesn't seem as cool as a finish line proposal. After talking to Maggie for awhile I realized that this had been the longest I'd been on my feet in a week and I was starting to feel it. This wasn't a good sign. I went home, got some pizza and passed out.
Sunday I was up bright and early. I used a layering strategy to dress for the race. I had a compression tank on followed by a long sleeve tech shirt and last year's race shirt. I opted for shorts and knee high compression socks. I wore a jacket and track pants over this that I was going to gear check at the race. I also had gloves and a hat. I wound up running with the gloves but not the hat. My hands tend to stay cold unless I'm really trucking it for some reason. As you can see from above that I was placed in the A corral. I was excited since this was my first time in A, but also worried since I've been sick and also haven't done a lick of speed training so far this year. I just didn't want to embarrass myself, or worse - get run over.
|Looking back towards the other corrals|
|There's the start line|
Since I didn't have my watch and I forgot to check the gun time of when I cross I really had no idea how I was doing. The clock at mile 1 showed just under 8:30 as I passed. I would later find out this meant my first mile was in about 7 minutes. I made it to mile 2 as the clock showed about 16 minutes... ok 2nd mile was around 7:30 pace. I was at around PR level. I wasn't expecting this and wasn't totally dying either. I decided to keep it up and see how I would do. The clock was still under 25 minutes when I passed the 5K marker. I now knew I could finish the race in under 40 gun time if I didn't let up. I struggled a bit in reaching mile 4 and knew it. The clock time was 32 minutes. I still knew that if I dug in that a sub 40 gun time was still possible. When we turned down Michigan Ave I dug in and tried to pick up the pace the best I could. I clawed my way up Mt Roosevelt trying not to lose my steam. Once I hit the home stretch I tried to dig for a sprint and just didn't have it. I was able to speed up a little bit and crossed the line when the clock showing 39:28. This meant I definitely finished in under 40 minutes and wasn't too far off from a PR. I made my way down the finisher's chute getting some water and whatnot.
As I made my way towards gear check I pulled up my race results to see how I actually did. My time was 38:12 which was just 31 seconds behind my 8K PR and a totally unexpected performance given how I felt all week. I was pretty elated to say the least. I spotted Lynton and he let me know where the Bootlegger's were going to be camping with their beers. I grabbed my gear and put my pants and jacket back on. I started walking to get a beer and Mo spotted me. I walked with her to get her gear and then we headed to get our prize of beer. Mo was a real trooper after having completed a marathon yesterday.