Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Grand Old Day "On the Go" 8K Race Report

This wasn't a goal race for me...I chose it mainly because I wanted to find a race that the kids could do this summer, and they had a 0.25mi kids run (most of the kids runs around here are at least a half mile, which I thought was probably too far for them).

So, I hadn't trained specifically for this race, although I have been training for half marathons recently. I had also been feeling under the weather - I had a cough and some congestion the last couple weeks that just won't go away. So, I didn't go into this race with too high of expectations. My A goal was to break through 45:00, but I wasn't counting on that. My real goal was to set a new PR (which I thought I should be able to do reasonably easily based on other recent race times) by going sub 47:00.

I ran this race 2 years ago. At the time, it was my first 8K and my first race longer than a 5K. I actually ran it because I was hesitant to go straight to a 10K and I thought it would be a good stepping stone.

On race day, the family all got up early and headed out to the races. This was a bit different, as I usually go to my races solo. We were running a little late, so I jogged over to pick up my packet then met the family near the start line as I got prepared. A couple minutes later I had to go get lined up.

As we started I realized that I had started too far back - we were going way too slow, but I took advantage of that and made sure I ran close to the area where my family was standing so that I could wave wildly at the kids. Then, it was time to start weaving around a bit. When we got to the mile 1 marker, I realized that I was going way faster than I thought and figured that I would regret it later...oh well, this isn't a goal race anyway. So, I just kept going at what felt like a reasonable pace for 5 miles. I lost some time pushing my way up one of the hills which I remember thinking to myself on the way down the other side - gotta take that time back! At the turn-around I started to feel pretty tired and my side started cramping...weird, that doesn't usually happen. Then I realized that I wasn't breathing as deeply as usual, due to the congestion issues. I forced myself to take some deeper breaths and the cramp went away. Around this time is also when I suddenly decided to care about my finish time. I realized that I was exactly on pace to finish at 45:00 even. The 'back' part of the course was a little tougher than the 'out' part because of the hills, but I was now determined to keep up this pace. I somehow managed to keep it up, but had almost nothing left for sprint into the finish (I guess that is a good thing, right?) I ALMOST hit that 45:00...missed my a whole 3 seconds! But I beat my previous PR by exactly 2 minutes and did much better than I had anticipated, so I am very happy with the result.

About 15 minutes after my run it was the kids turn. We went to line up and I put us all the way at the back of the pack because I knew my DD would get freaked out by all the kids around her running all of a sudden (she gets scared of people quite often). We took off all hand-in-hand (too cute, I know) and both of them just kept laughing. As we got going, DD kept running ahead and getting in front of DS then slowing down - she wanted to beat him! We were the last finishers, but of course, no one cared. They both ran the whole distance - no walking at all! I am so proud of them!! I am especially glad that they had fun - they had smiles on their faces the whole way!


Race: Grand Old Day "On the Go"
Date: June 6, 2010
Distance: 8K
Official Time: 45:03
Average Pace: 9:04
Overall Place: 222/411
Place in Age Group: 28/61

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Cheering Section

I went out to the Stillwater Marathon & Half Marathon course with the kids last weekend to cheer for some friends that were pacing the event. The kids were pretty excited about cheering for the runners that morning. In fact, since it was pretty early, I didn't feed them breakfast before we left, but instead stopped in Stillwater to grab something to take and eat 'picnic-style' while cheering. When we pulled into the Starbucks (is there not a 'Happy Meal' in Stillwater, people?) the kids got upset because there weren't any runners. Then, when we pulled up to park they saw a playground and DD said "no play, cheer runners". How cute!

So, found a good spot right around the corner from the water stop around mile 12 and laid out our blanket. The kids and I ate our breakfast while cheering "Go Runners!" and playing with our noise-makers etc. **I would like to officially apologize to anyone who ran Stillwater and took a walk break after the mile 12ish water stop...for the little girl who was pointing out everyone walking and saying in that loud 3 year old voice "People not running!"** Anyway, they made it about 30-45 minutes before the playground lured away from the runners. After playing a while, we headed over the finish line to cheer in some runners and hang out with some running friends.

It turned out to be a tough day to run a marathon - besides the Stillwater hills, the runners had to contend with some hot weather and lack of shade along the course. Congrats to everyone out there who finished!

This weekend I get to both run and cheer! The family is going to the Grand Old Day races. I am doing the 8K again (I ran it a couple years ago) and the kids are signed up for the quarter mile race. It is technically their second race since they did the 50yd toddler trot at the Twin Cities Marathon last year, but it is their longest race ever! Hopefully they have fun!!