Monday, 3 January 2011

New Year's Day 5K

Guess who got her fat ass out for a run on New Year’s Day?

This girl.

I’ve been meaning to run a 5K on New Year’s for the last three years, but only got my act together this year. Perhaps it was the result of a little HBBC motivation since I’m totally counting this as a Resolution Run to score three extra points. It also didn’t hurt that we were experiencing a mini-heat wave (which unfortunately is now over) with temps topping out in the 40s. Nice!

My sister Z and her other half, Jolly Green, came along to cheer me on. The race took place in a small NH town I’d never been to before. There were almost 200 runners and walkers participating. After registering and taking a short warm-up jog around the block, we were all herded towards the start line.

Since I knew I was going to be super slow, I tried to stay towards the back of the pack but in front of the walkers. As I was waiting, Z ran up to me for a last minute hug and then said “Looks like it’s going to be uphill.”

Yeah. That was an understatement.

The start was right at the bottom of a very steep hill. That’s when I started having flashbacks to my first half marathon, which also took place in NH, and how hilly that thing was. I was in for it.

So the race started and I managed to drag my ass up that hill in some semblance of a run. Woo! After that it was hill after hill after hill. Mostly rolling hills but there were also three whopping huge uphills to deal with.

The race took place on country back roads which were not closed off to traffic. Thankfully there wasn’t much of that to contend with anyway so it was cool.

About a mile in a woman jogged up beside me and just started talking. Her presence and conversation helped take my mind off the hills that just kept coming. At one point there was a group of four of us running together, all chatting away about this and that. This was a new experience for me. It’s not that the English aren’t nice people, but, on the whole, they’re reserved so it’s not often that people chat with strangers mid run or are so openly friendly.

The first lady, N, and I stayed together for the rest of the race. Near the end, we rounded a curve and I saw a massive hill in front of us. I couldn’t contain the “Oh shit” that came out of my mouth at the sight of it. N immediately said, “Don’t look at it! Keep your eyes on the ground and keep going.” And that’s what I did.

I crawled my way up that behemoth of a hill and then up the remaining gentle incline towards the finish chute.

I scored a MASSIVE personal worst in this race. How slow was I? Let’s put it this way, I ran a faster pace during both of my marathons than I did in this 5K. Yeah, that slow. The hills were a factor but my performance can mostly be put down to general lack of fitness which has declined significantly in the last seven or so months. My race result didn’t and still has not diminished my joy though. I’m just so happy I got back out there again.

The furball was proud of my accomplishment too. Can't you tell?

After finishing I thanked N for staying with me during the race and then we went back into the town hall to partake in the post-race spread. There were orange wedges, bagels, soups and cookies of almost every variety and all were homemade. Tasty doesn’t even begin to describe it.

Anyhoo, I think I’ve prattled on long enough. I’ll talk about my on-going battle with PF, goals and various other stuff later this week. Hope you have all enjoyed the first few days of the new year. Catch up with you when I can.

Later gators.

10 comments:

Laura said...

Ha, I like that you count "being slower than my marathon pace" as the criteria for whether you're slow. My pace in my PR marathon is actually faster than my pace in almost any other PR... go figure :)

Either way, good job getting out there - I stayed in bed pretty much all day after New Year's!

Viper said...

Good job getting out there. Sounds like a fun race ... to be a spectator. Cheers to 2011!

Jamie said...

Good for you getting out there. I instead chose to lay on the couch and complain all day ;) Happy NY!

GeorgiaSnail said...

sometimes it's just about the experience..you made a new friend!

speaking of new friends, my wife has become rather fond of the Popener we received recently! Thanks!

Jamoosh said...

Happy New Year! As for that personal worst, think of it this way - you have no place to go but up the rest of the year!

Lily on the Road said...

Happy New Year Dawlink! Sounds like you're beating yourself up and there is no need. You were out there putting one foot in front of the other...good on YOU!!

Like Jamoosh said, *it's all up hill* from here...LOL...

xoxoxox

joyRuN said...

What's with the orange wedges at the end of a race? I've NEVER looked at the pile of drying slices & thought, "mmmmm... that looks perfect just about now".

Good job getting the year started right!

Laura said...

Joy, I actually LOVE the orange wedges. Even after a marathon, I usually go for that and apples (if they have them). I really hate when they have bagels - to me, those are totally unappealing.

The Merry said...

Woman, if you got the year off to a running start, then you are an awesome possum at any speed!

Nitmos said...

I'm envious of you New YEars runners...resolution runners...whatever the races are called. I want to do nothing more than drink. Heavily. Racing never even crosses my mind this time of year.