Thursday, August 21, 2008

Johnny Cake 5-mile Again

Although I ran this race a month ago, here is the late-late rundown.

The weather was humid, which to any runner is a bummer. I really wasn't stoked or trained to run this race, but since it was our team race and we were "representing" I felt obligated to participate.

I made a quicker bathroom trip than the walrus, which never happens (he said the line was forever - yeah right, he is so uptight, haha). I decided to warm-up in my short sleeve dri-fit shirt instead of a my racing tank top just to see exactly how hot I was going to get. It was only a matter of a few minutes before the super slow jog brought about an overabundance of sweat. My shirt was soaked! It was going to be a rough one. I jogged the course backwards down Mentor Avenue about a half mile and back to wrap it up before changing shirts. I stopped at my truck to take 2 Endurolytes as they seem to have been minimizing the cramps in my hamstrings this seaosn, made a quick decision to tuck my tank under my sports bra as it is loose fitting and annoys the shit out of me when it gets wet and moves around and went to the starting line. Belly hanging out and all, I was ready :)

The entire course is flat with the exception of one hill at the beginning of mile 2. It is also USAT certified and has a cash purse, so quite frequently Kenyans have shown up to participate, along with some former members of TGR. This year there seemed to only be local competition. Hmmm, the non locals are probably gearing up for the Olympics ;)

The start was fairly tight as the course was changed due to construction and we had to run around the fairgrounds on a dirt path. Unfortunately, someone went down and cut her head pretty good at the start. I saw my teammates and a few of the Mentor varsity girls pull ahead of me almost immediately. I wanted to try to stick with them, but going out too fast in this heat would cost me dearly on the backside so I stayed where I was.

I felt a little tight coming through the first mile at 7:30, but had expected myself to go out too fast like usual. I have now just accepted it. I will always run my first mile faster than projected unless I have a pacer or wear my garmin.

I hit the hill and whoa!! I felt like my legs had just stopped. I tried to pump my arms and look ahead. I was just not feeling it, but then I heard this terrible awful labored breathing like an animal that is suffering and should just be shot and put out of its misery. It was a girl and she was H-U-R-T-I-N-G! It was only the start of mile 2. I thought, "how could you run like that and hold on? She definitely needs to slow down." Not to mention her breathing was bugging the heck out of me. She was literally breathing down my neck. She was thankfully, running with two guys that told her it was okay to slow. They realized her breathing was severely labored and eventually the slower jog dropped to a walk. Bang! Just like that the humidity had taken a runner out at the start of mile 2. I made it to the top and made the turn relieved I would have some shade and a nice flat road ahead. I could see my 2 teammates up ahead. They had put a good distance between us. I really wanted to catch up to them, but it seemed impossible and now was not the time for me to start pushing. I was pretty much completely recovered by mile 2, but the hill had cost me. Time 8:08.

The next 2 miles I could only keep my teammates in sight and slowly work my way up. I was consistently passing people who were succumbing to the heat. I thought for a second maybe I had picked up the pace after mile 3, but no my splits showed I was holding, which meant others were fading. I grabbed 2 cups of water, one to drink and one to pour on myself. I had to stay cool or risk overheating. There was a moment in the race at the end of mile 4 when everything seemed to go still and the heat settled in on me. I recognized this feeling. It is one of the first major signs for heat problems for me before I become dizzy and nauseated and then passout. I shook it off and tried to focus. Mile 3 - 7:36 and Mile 4 - 7:40.

Finally, the last mile. This is somewhat brutal as it is straight down Mentor Avenue for what seems like forever, there is no shade and with the construction you can not see the end until you come around the CAT equipment by the bank. I checked for my teammates and to my surprise had closed the gap. I caught the first one. I tried to encourage her to run with me and catch our other teammate, but she was completely red faced and not breathing normally. I asked if she was okay, but I knew she wasn't. She told me to go and try to catch my other teammate. I was worried, but she said she would be okay, so I plodded on. Only a half mile to go and I caught my other teammate. She said I looked great and was getting faster all the time. She is a police officer so I admittedly told her how all the blood doping I was doing truly was the key. She smiled and told me to keep going. I passed her and headed for home.

Now, on top of chasing my teammates, there was this one chick that had beaten me at the Jim Klett 10k, who happened to be at this race too. I had kept her in my sights and until the last 1.5 miles or so I had not made up any ground on her. I was getting closer and closer, but I was running out of road! I wasn't going to make it. I needed another mile. Damn! She finished about 20 seconds ahead of me and to top it off this other chick came flying by me at the very finish. ARGH!! And yep, she was in my age group too. Last mile 7:36 with a half ass kick.

I finished in 38:31 taking 5th in my age group. Of course, 3rd and 4th had to be those other two girls I mentioned (someone has a bad sense of humor). I missed my PR by 13 stupid seconds, but have I mentioned how humid it was? I grabbed some water immediately. The nauseated feeling passed within a few minutes and I knew I would be okay. There were however, quite a few people dry heaving and puking what little they had in their stomachs in the garbage barrels near by. I was satisfied with my performance. Not an "A" race, but I had put forth a consistent effort. I have been all over the place with my times this year and I know I am in triathlon season right now, but man can't I be good at everything?


DaisyDuc said...

Great job girl! Those hot humid races definitely take a toll on the body!

tracie said...

you worked it for sure!

(p.s. you are pretty much good at everything :P)

Anonymous said...

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