or Lessons Learned in a Hot(ish) Small Race
I’m currently training for the Broad Street Run 10 Mile race on May 6. My training plan called for a 10K this weekend, and this one fit right in. It also let me start to explore some non-NYRR races.
It was a definite change – there were 148 people who participated in the 10K. Not sure how many in the 5K or the 1 mile walk. So teeny! Our timing chips were these foam things with a metal reader in them that had been put in numbered ziplock baggies. We were instructed to pin them on our shirts or shorts/skirts. Interesting.
We all headed to the boardwalk at Rockaway Beach where the start and finish were. There was a loop that made up the 5K, so those of us doing the 10K did that twice. Luckily I always carry my Nathan handheld (because the pouch is just right for my inhaler) because there were no water stations anywhere along the course.
The weather was supposed to be in the 50s at the start time and climbing through the 60s, but I’m pretty sure we were well into the 60s by start time and it just climbed. It was hot and no shade (shades of the out and back at WDW for sure). Also, my allergies have been acting up, so the inhaler ended up being used a couple of times. Still, I felt like I was starting out well. I might have taken off a little fast, but I thought I could hold that run pace. Well, with the heat and the wheeziness, I wasn’t able to fully hang on. So insert some more fast walking – I really try to keep my pace up walking when I have to drop to it in a run interval.
I knew approaching the turn to go around the course again that I was pretty far back in the crowd, but I wasn’t sure exactly where. I felt a little better when I passed one guy and saw a few people coming back towards me. I just kept reminding myself that DFL (Dead F-ing Last) is greater than DNF (Did Not Finish) and that is greater than DNS (Did Not Start) any day and kept on going.
What I am most proud of is that as I went around the dog leg and could see the turn around at the end of the boardwalk, I could also see that the volunteers who had been there the first time around weren’t there. I knew there was no timing mat to check. I did know that there was at least one person behind me, but I wasn’t sure how far. I admit, I did consider turning around when I knew that no one was coming towards me with a chip pinned onto them. But only for a moment. Because I knew that I’d feel completely down on myself if I did that – like a total fraud. So I committed to do it, no matter what my time was. So I went to the end of that boardwalk and did the whole course!
My official time was 1:16:06 – which is slower than my PR (which was set on hills) – and I finished 138 out of 148, but I’ll take it. I completed the whole course. I also learned that smaller races, while it’s nice not to have the hassle of the corrals and stuff, smaller races are tougher if you’re a back of the packer. I was running on my own much of the time, and it was harder to find someone to “chase”. As the morning went on, I also had to do a bit of weaving among people just out on the boardwalk for whatever. But all in all, I’m happy with the race and my results.
Oh yeah…after it was over, we went back to the bar where number and shirt pickup had been. We each got a drink “coupon” in our bags, and I’d been hoping they’d have their taps going as they have Magners on tap, but they didn’t. So I had probably the best tasting Heineken I’ve ever had. Funny how being a dirty, SWEATY, smelly princess – and add thirsty to that – makes even beer taste good. LOL. Also wonderful Irish “Soda Bread” Scones. YUMMY!
3 weeks and a day to Broad Street!