OK, so first things first…I’ve learned the hard way that a half pound of raw carrots the night before a race is not good pre-race fuel. Sheesh!! Good thing the race didn’t start until 10!
So this was my first race in 2016. I’ve made this race an annual event for the past four years b/c it falls on or around my birthday. And really what better way to celebrate than to run a race?
It is local 5k, on a course that is VERY difficult. It is an out and back loop. First mile, all down hill, second all flat, third all uphill. This is not a PR course, but I enjoy it because it is close to my house, and I always see a lot of running friends there.
Some of my best running buddies didn’t show up this year, but I brought an old friend who is new to running. It was awesome to share the experience with her!
It was COLD this year, but not so bad once the race started.
One of my biggest thrills is to see/greet all the people I know. I saw our high school cross country team…they were running in the opposite direction on a training run. ‘Go Mrs R.’. So that was fun. I also saw some cross country moms who braved the cold to race too! Awesome! And a friend who ran Boston last year when I did (we actually found each other at the start in Boston!).
The very best part of this race for me was when I was coming up the awful uphill finish. A man in front of me was struggling. He’d walk, I’d pass him, then he’d run and pass me…At one point, I was passing him again. As I ran by, I motioned with my arms to ‘come on’. To my surprise, he did! We reached the single flat part in the uphill finish, I knew to surge here, b/c the .1 to the finish line was uphill. He didn’t surge, but he didn’t walk either. He finished about 5 seconds behind me. Later, after we’d caught our breaths, he came over and thanked/hugged me for the encouragement. That made my day!
The really good ending to this story is that he won his age group!!