What an awesome race. About 350 runners, all the free (green) beer you could drink, a beautiful (although slightly chilly) day and my new favorite running partner:
My little sister Ashlyn!
But let me back up a little bit. Remember the post I wrote the other day about not being able to find time to run? I was about to hit “publish” on that post when I got a random text from my 15 year old sister:
Would you like to go for a small run with me after work?(:
Please note that my sister has always hated running. She has never understood why people would run for fun. But apparently running with me was her compromise with our mom since she was missing basketball practice that day. I jumped at the chance and headed over to her house as quickly as I could. We ran a quick two miles to the beach and back. Well, “quick” might be an exaggeration. My little sister is in GREAT shape due to the fact that she plays varsity high school basketball. I would be out of breath, needing to walk, and she wasn’t even breathing hard.
I think it made her realize that if I think I can run, then surely she can run.
I told her how much I was dreading the 8k on Saturday and she offered to run it with me. Glory be! My little sister has NEVER run a road race. She did a mini sprint tri with me a few years back, but has never done a running race. Especially not an 8k! But I knew she could do it. And I think running with me made her realize she could do it too.
She really is the perfect running partner for me. She can run faster than me, but doesn’t turn into one of those annoying people who keeps saying “COME ON! You can do it!” when you feel like you’re about to die. She pushes me just out of my comfort zone – so I’m “comfortably uncomfortable” as I told her.
My dad signed her up for the 8k, and actually even took her to get some running shoes this week. (Hers were in SAD shape and we didn’t think she should run 5 miles in basketball shoes.) She ended up with the Brooks Glycerins in blue in case anyone was curious. They match her iPhone case – what else matters?
That brings us to this morning. I feel bad for everyone who is in town for spring break because it has been abnormally cold around here this week! This morning? Mid 40s! The race started right next to the beach so things were really chilly.
After much debate, I decided to wear my Old Navy jacket over my tank top, along with my capris and knee high St Patty’s Day socks.
The crowd of runners lined up…
And they’re off!
Ashlyn and I fell into a nice pace from the very start. Don’t you love when you feel like you actually started at the part of the pack where you belong? Not too fast, not too slow – just right.
I’m not quite up for running 5 miles straight yet – I gave birth 3 months ago and have only been running once a week for the past ten weeks or so – and we decided early on to do a 4:1 run/walk ratio. I actually cheated and we ran the first 9 minutes without taking a walking break. We were feeling good, so why not?
The course is a big loop – very scenic, almost a nature preserve type of environment. And the last mile and a half is on the street right beside the beach. It doesn’t get much more scenic than that!
While we were enjoying the scenery, my husband was busy coming in FIRST place in his age group!
He ran the 8k (almost exactly 5 miles) in 37:35 – an average 7:34 min/mile.
Have I mentioned he only runs about once a week too? Natural athlete. Incredible.
Ashlyn stuck with me through the whole race, even though I knew she could have gone a whole lot faster. About a tenth of a mile from the finish line, I told her to go on ahead – and WOOSH! There she went. That girl had a WHOLE lot left in the tank. She flew through the finish line! Official time: 54:47 – avg 11:01 min/mile.
I tried to kick it into gear, but I didn’t have a whole lot left to give. My body was SORE and protesting, but I did what I could. There was one lady between me and the finish line so I made it my goal to pass her. I did! Official time: 55:04 – avg 11:05 min/mile. I’m pretty happy with that since my goal was to finish in under an hour!
In case you’re wondering, I was carrying Ashlyn’s inhaler in my back pocket.
What a beautiful morning. As always, I have to thank our cheering squad/babysitters. Thankfully this race started less than a mile from their house – nice to be so close to everything! We appreciated them coming out nice and early and braving the cold so we could run!
Oh and showing the Mini Athlete the birds off the Pier while we were running. Looks like he loved them.
Oh and remember that green beer I mentioned? This race had quite the after-party. And check out that view behind the cup!
Yes, that’s the beach. Who wants to come visit?
I am SO incredibly proud of Ashlyn for running her first race. Right after we finished she said, “I’ll do another race with you – maybe a 5k?” I’m already working on getting her to do the IronGirl 5k with me next month. I might turn her into a runner yet.