|The one photo of me on the trails and I'm walking. Awesome.|
My Race: It's been a while since I have written a race recap without a bunch of excuses, an illness or some kind of nagging pain. I had none of that yesterday. I've only been taking iron supplements for my anemia for 2 weeks, but I honestly felt 100% yesterday. Maybe it's psychological, but those pills worked. I enjoyed myself, had no unusual pains, had no digestive drama and I loved every second of it.
About two miles into the race, I saw someone running ahead of me and realized that he had some kind of disability. I don't know what - perhaps cerebral palsy or some kind of muscular disorder. His running style was unusual and each step looked difficult. I chatted with him for a minute or two and told him he was really encouraging me. He fell over at one point and I stopped to help him, but he got right back up with a huge smile on his face and said, "I'm having so much fun." Well, damn. You bet I got all teary eyed right there and then. For the rest of the race I kept telling myself "I'm having so much fun." Best mantra and inspiration ever.
My Time: Last year my time for this race was 2:18:51, but I knew I couldn't beat that time today. Instead my goal was to have fun, not die and come in before 2:30. Turns out I need tougher goals, because not only did I not die, but I came in at 2:26:09 (gun time). My chip time was about 30 seconds faster than that. I'm really happy with that time, but looking back I could have pushed myself a little. But then again, why mess with a perfect trail run? In my age group (women below 44) I placed 49 out of 99. It literally cannot get any more middle of the pack than that.
Post-Race: I don't think I am capable of finishing a race without a tear. Seriously, it's getting ridiculous now. After much pretending I wasn't crying ("I'm sweating around my eyes, shut up!") I walked around for a few minutes, got some water and enjoyed some bagels. I waited around the finish for a while so that I could see Jill come in, who drove down from the Nashville area for the race. It was so nice to see her again!
Then I headed out and Tim and I went to Whole Foods for lunch. I love that place but since they charge like $87 per ounce at the hot bar it's not a frequent dining destination for me. Post race, money and calories don't matter. I got garlic kale, curried swordfish, baked chicken wings, sauteed cabbage, sesame noodles and sweet potato fries. And then couldn't eat it all because my stomach was playing up. Do you know how bad it feels to pay by the pound for your food and then not eat it all?
Somehow about 45 minutes after not being able to finish my lunch I was hungry again and ready for frozen yogurt. Crazy how that happens, huh? I always seem to have a little extra room for dessert.
Today (Sunday) I'm feeling a little tired but no real aches and pains. I will say, however, that my quads have never been this sore. Not even after my marathon was it quite this bad. Sitting down to use the toilet is a mission - as it getting back up. Now I know what it will feel like when I'm 94.
Have you ever participated in a race for more than one year? What's your longest race streak?
This is the only race I've done more than once, but I would definitely do it again. Maybe even the full? A girl can dream!
What's the most inspiring thing you have seen on a race course?
So many things inspire me during a race, and there is no doubt that I'm more emotional when it's a tough race. The littlest things make me tear up! Seeing people with disabilities run is pretty amazing - if they can do it, what the heck am I complaining about?!