I signed up for this race less than a month before the race date, it was definitely a knee jerk registration. The reason? I needed a 10K time to submit for corral placement for the Disneyland Half Marathon and since times have to be submitted no later than July 1st, I needed to get on that and fast! So I saw this community race that was pretty affordable and thought I would give it a go!
I went to packet pick up the day before and got my bib and timing chip. Then did my pre-race ritual of pinning my bib onto my outfit and getting it all laid out the night before.
I have my race day essentials all ready to go! My Team Sparkle skirt, Pro Compression marathon socks and my Brooks Adrenaline's! As per usual, I tossed and turned the night before, worrying I would sleep through my alarm. I woke up with a jolt about an hour before my alarm went off because the sunshine was so bright I thought for sure I had slept too late!
We got to the race location and it was a cute small town race. The race chute was lined with local vendors selling their wares. It was quite quaint.
This is looking from the course to the finish line. Lots of arts and crafts vendors lining the street. They also had port a potties in different areas for the runners and people attending the fair to use.
Now, I'm not a fan of these things, AT ALL! I had horrific dreams about bad things in port a potties (thank you X-Files), but these are a necessity for runners unfortunately. These however were quite delightful and I'm being serious! They were super clean, really well lit, had hand sanitzer (yay!) and smelled quite nice, very tropically like you were having of a Pina Colada! So that's pretty awesome!
Let's get this race going! Looking at this picture I think of Lightening McQueen, the checkered flags behind me and my outfit of red and gold. HA! Too funny.
The race, being a local one, wasn't all that big. There were only 600 racers splitting the courses that day, there was a 5k going on at the same time.
It was still a good turn out and everyone seemed to know each other. I guess that's what you get when you run in a community race! It was a refreshing change! Though this was definitely a fun run as the majority of the people that ran were doing the 5K. When the 5K turn around came (the course was an out and back) the participant level severely dropped off and I felt practically alone on the course.
The course was all backwoods and scenic. Quiet country roads with little shade, unfortunately. Good thing I remembered to put on sunblock, otherwise I would have been the color of my shirt! The course wound along through the woods and by some farms, it was really quite nice. It was hot though and the direct sunlight made this course a challenge, even though it was pretty flat.
We had two water stops, one at the 5K turnaround and one at the 10K turnaround. The 10Kers got three water stops essentially as you ran by the 5K one twice. Which was really nice considering the heat, the water was much needed! What really surprised me and made me smile for most of the race (yes, I was smiling while I was running) was the camaraderie on the course. Runners would encourage each other as we passed going opposite directions. Smiles and kind words on a race course are always welcome and I loved experiencing it during this race. I also got tons of compliments on my skirt! People were calling me the "Sparkle girl", it was pretty fun actually.
My pace for the race was pretty steady despite the heat and I kept going even though I wanted to stop and walk. It was getting to the finish line when I was ahead of another lady runner whom I had been playing leapfrog with on position in the race. I was ahead and coasting towards the finish...when I heard her coming up quick and then saw her slowly pass me on my right. All I could think was, "oh no you don't!" I was so close to the end, I was not going to let her win. Then doing something I've tried before and never could do, I picked up my speed and lengthened my stride. It only took a little bit more effort than I thought it would, but before I knew it I had passed her (easily, actually) and was headed into the finish chute. I had beat her and that gave me a bit of a boost!
I headed over to the water and bananas and grabbed one of each. My hubby met up with me and I grabbed my Picky Bar and chocolate milk from the bag he was carrying and promptly started stretching.
It was sooo good! Chocolate milk after a long run has got to be my favorite! We stayed around for the awards, the finish times were crazy. The male 1st place runner came in at 33:30 and the female 1st place runner came in at 38:51. Those are some crazy 10K times! They were passing me going the other way when I was only at mile 2!!
Overall, I did alright, I finished in 1:15:15. I didn't PR, but I did what I came to do, I got a decent time to put in for my race corral placement. I've discovered that running shorter distances and hoping to improve your time is tough to do when you have been training for half marathons. The structure for training and how you use your energy is completely different, so I can't be too angry at myself for my time. It was a fun time though and enjoyed the people around. Hubby had a great time too, he ate at the pancake breakfast there while I was running. :)