As the race announcer put it, it was a “no excuses” kind of day, so I will do my best to write my race recap for the 2013 Cherry Blossom 10 Miler with no excuses!
Saturday night I finally sucked it up and made a new playlist. It had been so long since I logged into iTunes that my credit card information was outdated, and that credit card expired last fall! I was faced with the reason why I had put it off for so long–it took me three hours to find 90 minutes of new songs. There has got to be a better way!
Once that chore was done, I decided on my race day outfit and put out my race day gear.
On race day, my alarm went off at 5:00, and I pretty much hopped out of bed right away. I took a quick shower, took Tiger Lilly for her walk, and ate my pre-race breakfast (Kashi whole grain waffle, sliced banana, one cup of coffee).
We left the house at about 6:20 and my husband dropped me off near the race start. (I love having a race-day sherpa!) I checked out the pre-race activities and warmed up by running around the Washington Monument.
I headed to my corral shortly after 7:00 but that probably was too soon. It was a glorious morning but it was cold! They started the pre-race ceremonies with the presentation of the colors, singing of the National Anthem, and announcements about the successful fundraising for the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. The announcer asked for silence during the presentation of the colors, and I was stunned by the silence of the crowd–maybe being in the shadow of the Washington Monument in the heart of the Nation’s Capitol garnered more respect for the symbols of our country and the privilege of our freedom.
The race started right on time. I was at the front of my corral and didn’t notice too much crowding at the start, although some of the hairpin turns later in the course were tight. The race itself was pretty uneventful. I ran the first half too fast, and paid he price on Haine’s Point, where the 1.5 miles out came with a headwind. I tried to catch up with the group just ahead of me so I wouldn’t feel the wind as much, but I just couldn’t do it.
I told myself that I would pick up the pace again for the last 2.5 miles, but every so often I felt a “ripple” in my right calf muscle that made me afraid to push my pace, and my breathing was labored enough as it was. (I’m pretty sure my exercise-induced asthma is back, so I will be making a doctor’s appointment tomorrow.)
All along Haine’s Point I was thinking about last year’s race, and the runner who didn’t make it past mile 9. One of his family members saw my blog post last year, and we exchanged emails, so I knew a bit more about him. I said a prayer for him and his family as I reached mile 9.
The course finishes with an uphill segment that looks short on the map, but felt like it would never end. I was able to run a bit harder for the last stretch and did my best to cross the finish line smiling, but I don’t know if I will have any race pictures to prove it!
Official Chip Time: 1:24:02
(This is actually a “before” picture–
I still have on my husband’s throw-away sweater)
I made my way to the post-race area, and grabbed water, Gatorade, a banana and a muffin, and then headed away from the race venue to meet my husband. We stopped at Starbucks on the way home, and I considered it an extra bonus that they were brewing Komodo Dragon. 🙂 When we got home, I went straight upstairs and sipped on my grande Komodo Dragon while I enjoyed a warm epsom salt bath. I was cautious with my post-race food choices (the banana and muffin remain untouched) because I often have post-race GI issues, but so far so good and it’s almost time to fix dinner.
(Yep, I definitely started out too fast!)
While I was warming up for the race, an Outlook reminder for the GW Parkway Classic popped up on my phone! That race is only two weeks away, so I won’t really be able to do much more training, although that last hill on the Cherry Blossom course made me realize that I could stand some more hill conditioning. I’m just not that sure I can improve my performance that much in the next two weeks without risking injury.
Do you shower before a race?
Do you put your races on your Outlook calendar?
Join in on the #bestrun fun with Miss Zippy!