Friday ended with a 10 mile road race, Blessing of the Fleet, in Narragansett, RI. Sir GIS-A-Lot talked me into this way back in March, we'd go up with a couple other local runners. My BIL, due to transportation issues, also had to bail. Work runner friend Don said, thanks but no thanks "It can be a hot one." Can't say they missed too much. They would have been running to fast to take in what I took in!
My stats: time: 1:45:51 / overall place: 2,134/ 2,642 / place in age/sex 237/317 (splits below - what do I do with this data!???!?!!? anyone? Buller?)
The walkers (462 of them) started 30 minutes before the runners (2,642). The walkers, and by that I don't mean Zombies, hubb was nearly bummed he missed this if there were actually zombies involved. The walkers were to start at 5:30. I got up to the start area about 5:30, plenty o'time to walk around a bit, get a little jog in, get warmed up. Mother Nature had other plans, she had a shower in mind. A nice accompaniment to the humid stillness.
The sky threatened
And it rained
And it stopped just about 5:50. I wandered up to the starting line. The race was getting chip timed so everyone didn't need to crowd the front to get a decent race time or pace or why ever people crowd the start line. Why do people crowd the start line? Let the elite runners, the top 10% up there, the ones that are going to blow through these 10 miles in 50 minutes to an hour. So it drizzled, we hung out, 6 o'clock came and the walkers were summoned to the starting line. "Walkers?" Said the runners around me. We thought they went at 5:30. Well the officials held the race for 30 minutes so the weather could clear. Runners now start at 6:30. Now there is a mass of runners, 2,642 finished so there were more starters as a few people dropped out mid way through. I hope for the best for the ones who didn't make the decision and were taken off the course on a stretcher. This throng of runners crowding both sides of the street waiting anxiously to get the signal to fill the start chute. There were a few incidents of jumping the gun to fill the start chute (which was an active roadway) and the police had to cut a swath through the crowd to let vehicles through. There was one lady who looked terrified, the guy next to me said, "I think I just saw her lock her doors, she is in fear of all of us." I said, "We do look like an unruly bunch, don't we?"
We were off at 6:30, my plan was to not go fast out of the chute. As I sucked wind at mile 1 and saw a 9 minutes on the mile 1 clock I thought, well shit this isn't a good start. I backed down and passed mile 2 at 19 minutes. (splits below). The air was still, stark still, it was still and heavy. Ugh. We are at the mile 2 inner dialogue of Seriously Beth, what in the world do you think you are doing? Hey wait, she can run 14 miles. Seriously Beth, you've had two lousy nights sleep, it is humid, you don't want to injure yourself. Hey wait, you could try slowing down and get in a quality run, work on form, pay attention to form. Seriously Beth and Hey wait battled it out and I saw the mile 3 marker. Ah well that was fun, lets get back to business here.
Mile 4 approaches. Damn I really need to pee, is there a porta poty? Nope... Oh look a dirt side street, I'll just sneak down here. Ahhhh.... Back to it, adjusting my sweat and rain soaked shorts and tank. And look at this young boys with the hose out hosing off the runners. HOLY COW did that feel good!
Mile 5 HALF WAY! Ya freaking Hooo! People handing out crushed ice, thank you very much I'll just slip some under my hat! A little George Thorogood I Drink Alone on the iPod... hey let's turn this up. And it dies. The ear buds most likely... They may say sweat proof, it is a big fat lie. On, no probs. Take off the ear hooks and shove the wires in my bra and hope for no chafing.
And now, approaching Mile 6, I get to hear the conversations of the other runners and the walkers. Side note the first walker finished at 1:49:57, so pshew I didn't get beat by a walker. Behind me I hear a couple critiquing the other runners styles. She lands on her toes to much, that can't be good for her. She lands to heavy on her heels. Did you see the guy with the ugly shoes. And the one going barefoot, how weird is that. Oh, I think, I have to see this pair. They waddled, it was cute, waddling like a couple ducks squawking like a couple of chickens the whole while. And PS, those shorts totally don't go with those shoes, just sayin'.
Mile 6 and most of 7 were in the woods. BEAUTIFUL, no sun, no breeze, but no sun.
Then we came up on the party street, very cool. More walkers to deal with though. Why must you walk 4 abreast. I am seriously sorry for knocking into people and getting knocked into people, this isn't roller derby, I get that, just move to the right, as you've been instructed. I am sure you can hear the sloshing of my water bottle and the squishing of the runners soaked shoes. Move over, PALEAZE! OH lookey more boys with water hoses, yes please spray me, you are wonderful.
There is a little up hill approaching mile 9, Sir GIS-A-Lot warned me about this he said don't take it easy keep your pace up because it is all down hill from there. It was. I got nearer and nearer the chute and got more pumped, I passed quite a few people and "chicked a dude". Stomping on those timing mats I was winded and felt great.
Now what the devil are all these people doing standing in the finishers area? You, with the stroller, WTF? Oh grapes, oh orange quarters, oh hot dogs, ugh solid food sounds disgusting. OH shit, sorry for kicking your stroller but hey if I stop I WILL pass out... Get me out of this crowd. And finally I am out of the crowd standing near the sea wall munching on grapes and talking to another runner and dog lover. Hey Carlos!
And then on the bus to get back to Vinnie, change into a dry shirt (Hubb brought me back a super cool t-shirt from The Cape, picture later) and go home.
I was beat, I managed to shower, and talk to Hubb for 15 minutes before I went to bed.
|Blessing Pace and Elevation, guess where I stopped to tinkle... LOL|