The RACE was ABSOLUTELY AMAZING!!! Although the start was problematic, the end was AWESOME and I finish it under my 2 hours target!
Official time: 1:57:21. 266/1024 overall woman, 68/224 in my age group. Not bad for the debut
I didn’t sleep well, afraid of waking up late (like last time). I woke up at 2 and 4 AM and I decided to get up 30 min earlier than scheduled.
Had 2 slices of bread with LC and coffee
waited my friend Agustin at the garage. Outside was pouring! I was worried and scared!!
but I told myself “YOU ARE STRONG!”
Since the rain was really bad… we didn’t get to the starting line until the very latee. Instead we found a spot to stretch a little bit.
I don’t usually stretch before running… but it actually helped
I was freezing!!! Look how brilliant idea is to use a trash bag as cover! I got the idea from Emily.
just 10 min before 7 AM (starting time) the rain stopped, not completely but much much better. HOW LUCKY!
I lined up after the 9:00-9:15 pacer. It’s sooo cool to have pacers in the race.
By then, I was not scared anymore but EXTREMELY EXCITED!!! I told myself:” Just go to have some fun!!! “
There were 2750 runners! And we’re the second wave.
Breaking down 13.1 miles:
Mile 1: Right after we started, I passed the pacer. Since the course was going to end with a hill of 2-3 miles, I wanted to speed up a little bit at the beginning to have room to slow down later.
Mile 2: I felt a bit of pain on my right knee. I got scared. What if it get worse? Should I stop if it really hurt? How’s possible that I never have pain during the training and get pain in the race day? that’s not fair. After letting those thoughts for 2 min, I decided to shut it down and just run. I can decide later what to do about it if it get worse.
Mile 3: We entered the trail path. It was beautiful. The smell of the tree after the rain was so good. We had our first hill, the steepest one. Wasn’t too bad.
Mile 4 – 5: These flew by. The trail path was quite narrow. I’d say it only allow 2-3 people in a row. Squeezing between runners, avoiding mud pots had all my attention. I didn’t have music and I’m glad that the organizers enforced the rule. It was not safe to run with music in this race. Too many people and too narrow the course. Running without music was actually good. I could feel my form, my breath and other runners breaths. I loved the feeling of running between a group of runners!!!
Mile 6 – 7: Although I was fueling with coconut water that I brought, I started to grab water and gatorade on the water stations. I wasn’t thirsty nor tired, but I knew that if I don’t hydrate well… I might hit the wall around mile 10.
Mile 8 – 9: Still feeling great! And when I saw the 8:45-9:00 pacer, I got even more EXCITED!!! By then I knew my original target: finish under 2 hours, was possible!!! Just push baby push!!
Mile 10-11: I followed the pacer from then on. She is a women around 40, strong and fit. I was worried that I might lose her when we get to the final hill, but as long as I could, I just follow her. Oh… about the knee pain. I don’t even remember when the pain disappear. So relieved.
Mile 12: We got another steep hill, but there were people cheering us up at the end. It felt so great to have a supporting group there, even it’s just strangers! I started to feel my legs, arms and shoulders. No pain, no sore but I could feel them working When I pass the mile 12 mark… I knew I need to push hard for the final 1.1 mile and the hill.
To the end: around 12.5 miles I saw the tunnel! We all yelled “ The Final Tunnel“!!! After the tunnel we’ll see familiar faces and the FINISH line! But where’s the final hill? Did we pass it already or is the last 0.1 mile? I was confused. Running… pushing… getting the best of me…. I saw the light, end of the tunnel is just few steps away!
We passed the tunnel, a lot of spectators and the music cheering us up. I was HAPPY! I pushed the last 100 feet, passing a guy in front of me, I told myself: yes, YOU’RE STRONG!!!
Just crossed the finish line
I felt so accomplished, so happy!!!
The running group: Agustin, Carlos and Me. They were not very happy. Agustin couldn’t achieve his goal of 1:40 and Carlos suffered the whole race because he got a cramp at mile 4. (he’s 52 and he’s amazingly fit. He finished a half ironman two months ago in 5 hours! :shock:) What makes running a race fun and challenging is that you never know how you will do in a race. You can finish strong a marathon in one day and feel miserable in the next 10k race.
The high I feel after the race is even more than I imagined. It’s hard to describe. I am amazed how much one can do in just two months! From running sporadically to run a 10 K in < 1 month and finish a half marathon in 2 months! I am so thankful of being able to run, never had pain or injuries, just a lot of fun!
Oh… by the way… I’m running another 10k in two weeks, Star and his coworkers will run the 5k! More FUN to come!!!