This morning we all woke up at 6:30am to get ready to run the 2011 Turkey Trot. It was a perfect morning for the kids to try their hand (and their legs) at their first ever race. It was about 40 degrees at 7:30am when we arrived in downtown Miamisburg—It couldn’t have been a better temperature for a race this time of year. I left Jeff and the kids at the 1 mile kiddie race area and headed to the start line to join the throngs (yes, throngs) of people who had woken up equally as early to run 5 miles with the rest of us lunatics. I found the group of people hanging out by the sign that said “will run the race in under 50 minutes” and jumped under the rope to join them in line. It felt like an overly optimistic choice at the time, but I thought “what the heck?”. The national anthem was sung by what sounded like an Elvis impersonator at a few minutes before 8am. At exactly 8am, the gun sounded, and we were off——-well sort of .
Those of you who have never run in a race with multiple thousands of people may not understand how a start gun sounding can be such an anticlimactic moment. You get all excited about running, and then you walk, walk, walk, nose to tail ( or toe to heel) for the next few minutes until the crowd disperses a bit. I checked my watch to see exactly when I began running, and then I turned on my ipod.
For some reason, my ipod has dropped almost my entire song list over the last several weeks. On my run last night I was down to only a few songs, all of which were very slow, very sleep provoking, Christian tunes. Great songs for communion and nice relaxing walks on the beach, but not so beneficial to the running. Jeff helped me retrieve all of my songs off of his computer last night, so this morning I felt as if I had been reunited with all of my old friends.
Mile 1 felt like a breeze. I was so busy listening to my tunes and trying to dodge people’s feet that I practically missed the first timer. The timer said 12 minutes, which was based on the time they fired the gun. I figured I had run the first mile in a little over 9 minutes. Great! My goal was to run 5 ten minute miles, which isn’t great if you’re trying to get to the New York Marathon, but for a nearly 40 year old “non-runner” who makes herself run so that she is in good enough shape to ride well, I’d say “good enough”.
Mile 2 also felt pretty good. I was starting to get into a rhythm, and I hit the 2 mile marker at 22 minutes and some change. So far, so good.
Between mile 2 and 3 we got into a bit of a bottleneck on the course and were back to running right on top of each other. Runners were starting to get tired and began walking ….sometimes with no warning……right in front of you…..fun. As I approached the 3rd timer I realized that all of the “mass running” had slowed me down. I had lost 2 minutes. The timer read 34 minutes, and I wasn’t real thrilled about it.
I decided to try to make up some time on the 4th mile. Picking up the pace just a bit, I was determined to get back on track to finish at 52 minutes (50 by when I started running.) I pushed myself a little harder than maybe I should have, but by the end of the 4th mile, I was back to where I wanted to be. The timer read 42 minutes…..an 8 minute mile on mile 4. Nice.
I was pretty tired starting mile 5. Not sure if I had made the correct decision to run so hard on mile 4, I slowed myself back down to my 10 minute mile pace. I ran the first half of the mile fairly conservatively. When I spotted the finish line about 1/4 -1/2 mile away I started to pick up my pace. I ran hard the last stretch, and I ended up crossing the finish line at 52 minutes and some change—-50 minutes or less from when I started the race. No one was waiting for me with a gold medal. No one threw flowers at me when I crossed the finish line. I didn’t even see a photographer taking pictures of me. I, however, was pretty excited about the race I had run…..and REALLY excited about the fact it was over!
———————————————The Kiddie Race——————————-
Jeff and the kids ran the 1 mile race. Kate finished her race in 10 minutes, but said she could have gone a lot faster if she wasn’t running the first part with Jeff and Wade. Wade finished the race in 13 minutes. He is a true sprinter…..out with a bang and then some walking. He didn’t like the distance. Kate didn’t like all of the people. Jeff had no trouble with the one mile race. When we got home from the race, Jeff went to the reserve for his own 5 mile run……. and I’m sure he got a better time than 50 minutes.
Happy Thanksgiving, Everyone!