22 April 2007
I didn’t race it.
I volunteered instead.
But I did want to get my own run in first. So I got down to Shoreline at about 6, waved to Wally and started my own run. Rusty wanted me to do a 4 mile warmup, a 5 mile tempo and a 5 mile cooldown. But here I had this nice 10 mile course all laid out for me (José was just setting up the 9mile mark as I went by) so instead I jogged out 5 and ran back 5.
As I went passed Butterfly Beach the sun was peeking over the mountains and the ocean was bathed in a wonderful morning glow. A pelican was skimming along a breaking wave. Beautiful.
I got out to the five mile turnaround. I did my strides. I set off. There’s a spot marked 4 1/2 on the road. I checked my watch. 15 seconds too fast for the half mile (if the spot were accurate). I slowed. When I got to the 6 mile marker I saw I’d run 10 seconds too slowly. Damn. The spot was not accurate. And I felt more tired than I should for a tempo pace, and I hadn’t even run a tempo pace.
That scared me. I sped up a little. All the other miles were a little too fast, and all of them felt too hard. I guess I’ve still not completely recovered from Catalina. Sigh. I knew that. That’s why I wasn’t racing. But I didn’t want it confirmed so clearly.
Back at the finish line things were getting busy. I heard one coach explaining to her disciples that they should now warm up by running easily. Great packs of Team In Training people were running and walking along the bike path. Confusion. Excitement. Fun.
Patsy called me over for final instructions.
Then I went out again for my cooldown. I met up with Kim and Maggie doing their warm up and trotted along with them for a bit, until Annie and Melissa passed us and then I ran with Melissa (whom I hadn’t really talked to since she got back from France).
|Why can’t I run a race because I like running? Why do people have this peculiar sense that running is only valid if it does something totally unrelated?
I don’t object to having the proceeds of the race donated to a worthy cause — but that isn’t relevant to my running. I run because I love to. Why isn’t that OK?
And now it was getting close to race start. So I jogged down to my corner on State St. Someone stopped me to ask who benefited from the race. Another if this were a marathon. A course monitor wanted to know what she was to do.
Eventually I get to State St. Which I’m sharing with Steve Milley, a guy I don’t know and a policeman. We talk about how to position ourselves, and the policeman gently explains why my suggestions are dangerous
The race starts (we hear this on the police radio). We’re at mile 1 (and 9 on the reverse path), so we’ve got about 5 minutes before the leaders appear.
Hmm. Arron has some competition, at least at mile 1. We’ll see if they can keep the pace. Then Garrett, then Annie, Melissa G, Joe Hilton, Martin, Maggie and Kim… By volunteering I actually get to see the race. I can cheer on my friends. And I’m proud of them. It’s nice to see how fast we all are.
The leaders of the 5K have returned before all the the out-going pack has gone past. Oops, I wasn’t ready for that and quickly move from the street to the bike path to guard that intersection. And then there’s a brief hiatus after most of the 5Kers have passed and before the first 10milers return. I get a chance to chat with Steve.
A runner in the distance. It turns into Aaron as he gets closer. So his competition did go out a little fast. I find I’m keeping track of the order. Garrett is about eighth, Annie and Fred are running together at 12 and 13. Where did Joe Devreese come from? missed him on the way out. After about 20 I lose track, but continue to yell out the women’s ordering for a while.
Annie told me beforehand she wanted to break 60, and it looks like she’s going to. Melissa said ~62 and she’s in the right range (Melissa ran 61:59, sometimes the second is on the right side). Hmm. At mile 9, I get a pretty good feel for what the finish will be like. Melissa and I would both like to break 60 — someday, but not today (my guess is that Melissa is more likely to achieve this that I).
More friends pass. I get to cheer them all. Maggie looks strong, but damn it Kim couldn’t keep up… Oops, here she is, behind, but not too far back. Then Jody, then Andrea. Kirsten and Brooke with Gary not far behind. Yay! Well run all of you.
And then people I don’t know. Good heavens, Amy. I didn’t think she was racing at all this year. Eventually the rush becomes a trickle, and Steve and I get to talk some more.
A little after 10 we decide it’s over and jog back to the finish. Oof, I’m stiff.
It was fun. And a lot easier than running. May I encourage you to volunteer?