I was a last minute sign-up for Barefoot Neil Z's birthday yesterday on the big 10-10-10. Not one to miss out on all the blog world hoopla, I couldn't pass up such an exciting opportunity to prove how much speedwork I have lost since the winter and how sucky slow I now run.
Here's the rules:
- Between now and including Oct 10th, 2010 (10.10.10.), run any of the following distance
- 10 km
- 10 miles
- 1.0 km
- 1.0 miles
- 100 km
- 100 miles
- This run can be part of a race, or a training run, or a combination of a few runs, as long as the distance equals the distance you sign up for.
- You cannot change your distance unless you want to. And changes can only be made up to 12 times, and only up to Oct 10th.
Seems simple enough, just run something that somewhat resembled a 1 or a 0. What the heck, there was a 2-mile race in my neighborhood put on by one of the cross country coaches as a band fundraiser. Looks like that will fit perfectly into the 1 or 0 rule book. I'll just run two 1-milers. So there.
I love to be a rule bender.
So this race is pretty small. I mean, really small. Last year it snowed on race day and they maybe had a grand total of 60 entrants. This year it was the classic definition of a crisp, sunny autumn day: 55 degrees, vibrant blue skies, leaves turning their bright yellow colors. You'd think it'd have pulled in the masses. Surprisingly, not so much - about the same number of entrants this year. I hadn't committed to running this race before I actually got there; let's face it, I am in pathetic speed shape right now and I can't even tell you the last time I raced nor ran any sort of pace under 8:30's. Plus, I had no idea who was going to be there, and to be completely honest, I didn't want to look like a total out of shape blob to people I know. Yeah, I'm pathetic like that.
So I get there and size up the competition. Looks like a lot of cross country kids and band moms. Ok, I bite, I'll do it. Pay my $18 and stand on the start line, along with my old running partner, Dennis, who runs wickedly fast.
Dennis to me: How fast do you think you'll run?
Me to Dennis: Sadly, I'd be happy if I can squeak two 8's out right now.
Seconds later, and we're off. Two laps around the neighborhood, relatively minor hills, I can DO THIS!! I refuse to wear my watch, me and the watch are not good friends during a race - especially one I'm ill-prepared
Hit mile 1: 7:17. Really? I'm pretty stoked, but I know I don't have a lot left in the tank, which sadly reconfirms my out-of-shapeness.
Wrap back around the neighborhood again and I am definitely feeling it. Total blah feeling. Gagging on a lung. No air. Dead legs. Slow pace. Cross country team passes me - did I mention they were only doing a tempo run and tacked on an extra 1/4 mile at the half way point? My dear child, Ryan, passes me. My breathing is really labored and this is really frustrating me and all I want to do is be done.
Finish, relieved to be alive, official time: 15:18 (that'd give me a 8:01 for the 2nd mile, 7:45 overall pace - which was slower than my 10K pace a year ago. Grrr).
Yeah, I've lost a bunch of speed. I accept it. I'm happy my race was under my hopeful 8's, but good lord that hurt worst than I thought it would. Lots of soul searching in those two measly miles.
The cool thing was....all those non-running band mom's all finished behind me and I placed first in my AG and won a sweet little Mizumo black jacket - whoohooo! Not bad for a slacker, eh?
Now, I think that effort's deserving of the iPad prize from Neil!!
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, NEIL!
|Ryan wearing the red hat he won in the raffle, me sporting my new black Mizuno jacket and Brendan displaying the size XXL Pre shirt he won in the raffle. Total wins all-around!|