“Great success!” – Borat
Yesterday I completed my first race. The night before my race I was a ball of nerves. Luckily I was exhausted from a long day and had no trouble falling asleep at a reasonable hour. I woke up at 6:30, as I hadn’t yet picked up my race day materials.
I picked up my materials which included an Achilles Race T-shirt, my bib #, and a timing chip. I had no idea how to secure the timing chip to my shoe, so I casually watched a few other runners fasten theirs before I made my attempt. I also struggled a tad with my bib, adjusting it a few times trying to force it to lay flat. I was never on an athletic team when I attended Ithaca College, but I felt like I needed to represent my Alma matter’s gold and blue colors. Go Bombers!
Here I am with my gear, ready to go:
Around 8:00 they made the announcement for everyone to line up. I’m a slow runner, so normally I average a 10 minute mile. I figured that my nerves would make me run a bit faster, so I lined up in the 9 minute mile corral. I probably could’ve waiting a bit longer to line up, because I kind of just stood there being nervous for a good 15 minutes. Here I am standing and waiting:
8:20 was the start of the wheelchair race, and before I knew it the alarm rang for the rest of the runners to begin. It took a couple minutes to actually cross the start line, and the first mile it was pretty slow and congested. When I passed the first mile marker, it was approaching 12 minutes. At that time I was worried about not even making a 10 minute mile pace, so I picked up my speed from there. I skipped the first water station. I was a tad “over hydrated” (ahem…) and I was nervous about drinking too much and needing to take a pit stop.
Approaching the 3 mile mark, I really felt like I had picked up steam and caught up with the rest of the 9 minute mile group. That is until a fan yelled out “Here comes the 10 minute mile group!” Crap. So I picked up my pace again, determined to run a 9 minute mile.
After mile four I started really pushing toward the finish. A little too soon. I started losing steam around 4.5, and started thinking that I pushed my pace up too soon before the finish line. However, I was quickly re-energized once I heard the music and crowds cheering at the finish. With the finish line in view I sprinted toward the end. I was so fast that Brendan was barely able to snap a photo of me crossing the finish line!
I was on such an adrenaline rush that I forgot to even look up at my time. Luckily Brendan informed me later that it showed 46:50. Not too bad!
Here I am post race with my medal:
I knew the 46:50 time wasn’t exact, especially because it took so long for me to cross the starting line. So I checked the website today. Official time? 44:47! A 8:57 pace. Amazing!
I’m so happy I have my first run under my belt. I felt great afterwards and this makes me so much more confident for my half marathon in October.