On the Waterfront 5K Race Report

My Culvers-induced illness quickly subsided and 6:30 am came sooner than I'd have liked.

These early morning races always throw me. When I woke up, weather.com said it was 55 degrees. I cracked a window to test it for myself... yep, that's cold. So I battled with my common sense whether I should go with shorts and a tank top or capris and a t-shirt. But weather.com promised it wouldn't hit above 70 before 9am, so I went with the layers (complete with light jacket).

My mom and I headed out around 7 and walked towards downtown to where the race was being held. Of course, by the time we arrived at the start line, we had warmed up and the sun was coming up, and sure enough... I was the only one all covered up.

I got my race packet and my number... 177. I liked that number.

The sun rose and the race neared.

I had never done a race this large before. There were about 350 people standing at the starting line alongside me. Because of this, I knew the people at the back of the pack probably wouldn't cross the starting line until at least 20 seconds after the gun went off. That's an unfortunate hit to their times.

The ages of runners varied pretty drastically. To my left was a boy no older than 13 who kept playing with his bangs and smelled like he hadn't discovered deoderant yet. To my right was a woman no younger than 75 and no taller than 5 feet who was wearing only a sports bra and some running shorts pulled up above her bellybutton. Yet I knew it was more than likely both of these characters would beat me to the finish.

It was a simple out-and-back course that went along the well-traveled bike path near my house. It was quite a sight to see 350 runners forced to run single-file and dodge early morning path users who dared share the pavement with us.

Meanwhile, back at the starting line, fishiness ensued concerning the timing clock. My mom said that about 3 minutes into our run, the clock suddenly jumped up to 7 minutes. The timers panicked and "re-adjusted" the clock again. No one is really sure what exactly happened.

The run went well. Time passed quickly and before I knew it, I was halfway done. As soon as I hit the halfway point, I began counting the runners behind me. The reason is because they were giving out cash prizes to the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place finishers... but also the person who finished right in the middle. That could be me! But my counting proved less hopeful. There were only 100 people behind me. That meant I'd have to pass about 80 people in less than a mile and a half. No thanks. To be honest, I didn't do much passing at all during my run. Although, if I was graded on graciously letting OTHERS pass, I'd get an A+. At least 40 people found me too unbearably slow to stay behind.

The last 1/4 mile was a straight flat open road which ended with the promising gleam of chute flags flapping in the wind. I neared the crowd and kept my eyes glued to the clock. My goal was 29:00 and it was 28:40. I can do this.

But I suppose the chute was farther away than it first appeared. 28:50.

I was wheezing and dying and going my fastest. 28:59.

29:04. That was what the clock read when I crossed the finish line. So close.

I'm more than willing to accept that as a victory, except that something seemed off. First thing I say to my mom is, "I can't believe I didn't get under 29. I was going so fast... my first mile split was 8:50!" That's when she told me about the clock freaking out. Hmmm. I guess we'll just have to wait until the times are posted online to know for sure.

I hit my first mile at 8:50
I hit my second mile at 18:15
I finished at 29:04

Overall, I'm very happy that I officially PRed my 5K time. Go me!

At 9am, there was a 1/4 mile kids race that my mom and I just HAD to see. The kids were generally under the age of 7, with some of them young enough to be in diapers. It seems like nothing can make you laugh as hard as watching 3 year-olds try to run a 1/4 mile course... mainly because they have no idea what they're even doing. One small boy just stopped about 100 yards out and stood there confused. Awesome. Children are always good for a little entertainment and mockery.


I'm totally cursing my work schedule this time of year. Working 3-11pm every Saturday and Sunday really gets in the way of normal social activities and athletic events. Every time I want to do a triathlon or run a 5K, I have to calculate distance from home and whether or not I can make it back to work on time.

Our town is holding a huge music festival this weekend. It's only 3 blocks from my apartment and I'm missing out. This afternoon was the first time I got to be a part of it... and only because I was sanctioned to tape a wheelchair basketball game for work.

Sometimes I think it would be nice to just be a teacher. 8-3 workdays and summers off. Boy, what a life (I would know... because it's a gorgeous Saturday evening and I'm stuck inside a windowless room waiting for the 10 o'clock news to start (2 more hours?! Ugh)).


Anonymous said...

i love your story heidi played tennis in new trier did well oma in leroy

Anonymous said...

Congratulations on the time!! !! As far as I'm concerned you hit your goal. Keep it up. Too bad you didn't go with your Dad to India because then you could replace Culver's with a whole country and really have a big boycott. Allison got third in a 13 team tourney in Gibson City, never made a putt all day. Cover up the 1 on your 177 and you have Red Granges number, the Wheaton, Illini and Chicago Bears GALLOPING GHOST> Opa in LeRoy

Blog Widget by LinkWithin