One of my running friends was talking to another running friend and he said.... "I hope I remember how many loops I do - remember last year he did one extra loop because he forgot"... WAIT WHAT? How can you forget how many loops you have run? Whoa - I immediately jumped in... What???? They told me one of our OTHER running pals forget which loop he was on - so at mile 16, he turned to do another course loop rather than going straight to the 18.8 finish line. I think I would know because my body would be screaming at me....
This race was going to be a bit of a challenge - I had heard the course was really rough, especailly on your legs. Well concrete in general is rough - but I heard this course would really tear my legs up. I didn't know how - so I was trying to mentally prepare myself.
I headed over to the race start while they were singing the national anthem. It was like singing birds - it was the perfect harmony of voices. It calmed me.
The gun went off but it took a few minutes for me to cross the start line. There were a lot of runners, approximately 1350.
|Running into the Finish|
- Toes - felt good
- Feet - felt ok
- Legs - felt strong
- Abs - felt ok - could be stronger
- Heart/Lungs - strong
- Head/eyes/ears - alert
The first loop went by faster than I thought... Right at the turn around Steve and Bruce (BCRR members) screamed "Looking Good Kelli!"... Made me smile - I gave them a big WHOO HOO!
Second loop was also pretty uneventful... I started to feel my legs. I finally understood why everyone kept saying that the course would tear my legs apart.. At almost every intersection the flat pavement would suddenly become COBBLESTONE. Ugh, I tried everything to mitigate the rocks. I would speed up and lengthen my stride, in hopes to have as less of an impact that I could. It was brutal.
Half way through the second loop - I saw Steve and Bruce... "LOOKING GOOD KELLI"..... My reply: WHAA HOOO!!
The hard part was over... I kept saying, "Lets finish this.."
The last loop I started to slow - my legs were killing me. I was sooooo close to crossing that finish line! I kept moving, kept thinking it was almost over, kept pushing, digging deep. I ran towards the volunteer who held a sign that said.. (Second Loop, turn around... Third loop, go straight to finish!).... I started to count my loops.. CRAP how many had I run?? I only shouted WHAAA HOOO twice.. I didn't see Steve and Bruce.... Oh no...... What to do.... I snapped out of my mental reboot and looked at my Garmin, 16.9.... Time to hit the finish........ I ran straight ahead..
I tried to run harder but my legs were torn up. I tried to find that perfect stride, but I felt that the humidity and heat beaming down on my skin was defeating me... I started to talk to myself. "Do it, push through".. "Keep going" "Almost there"... I only passed a few runners.. I turned the last corner to find the crowd - and its like all the pain faded and I picked up my speed.... I ran through the crowed... turned slightly to the right and crossed the finish line.... As they gave me little dinky little medal (disappointed) I searched for water, and couldn't find any... Strange.. I started to cramp a little - and I was hobbling around... I decided I just needed to rest.. I got the typical banana, muscle milk..... and went straight over to the massage table... I actually bumped into another Oiselle Runner (Holly) and learned she DNF. She was really upset but was confident that it was the right decision since the Houston Marathon is only a few short weeks away.. I told her not to worry..... Everyone has to listen to their body..
I got on the massage table and the guy worked on my glutes.... They were the most tender part of my body.... I guess those cobblestones traveled up!
I'm glad I made it.. I'm glad I didn't give up on my run. I listened to my body. I finished strong. I am so proud of my time..... I wasn't the fastest - and I have so much room for improvement... But I am so happy.
Official Results - Sugarland 30K
18.85 Miles - 2:56:33
Average Pace 9:22/mi
Splits are all in the 9's!
What I am wearing
Oiselle Distance Shorts - Favorite!
Nike Stripe Singlet
Pro Compression Blue Argyle Socks
Saucony Sports Bra