Sunday, March 11, 2007

Race report!

I am back from my race and it was awesome!!

Tim, the kids and I left the house around noon to get to Ferndale early so we could secure a parking spot. The race itself didn't start until 2, but hundreds of people do this race every year and parking fills up quickly.

The weather was gorgeous. The skies were bright blue, the sun was shining and there was a slight breeze. We strolled up and down Main Street, looking in the windows of the shops. A lot of other runners showed up early, too. Many of them were wearing the race T-shirt, so I didn't feel like a dork waltzing around in it.

After standing in the sun for a few minutes, I realized it was really warm!!! I mean, Ferndale is not far from the ocean and doesn't get really warm, but today it bordered on hot (for our neck of the woods, anyway). I was sweating just standing still. I was glad it wasn't raining, but I was a little scared of the heat since I am used to running when it's only 50 degrees out. It had to be at least 65 today (I know, most of you guys are laughing at me right now because we consider 65 degrees "hot").

At 1:30 p.m. the two-mile race started. There were lots of kids and families in that one. Three women dressed as cows went past us. Some of those younger kids were fast!!! We waited around and only 11:30 or so into the race the first runners crossed the finish line. Um, that's how long it takes me to do one mile. I couldn't imagine running two miles that fast!

As runners and walkers continued to flood in, I left Tim and the kids to find a place in the corral to get ready for my race. It was supposed to start at 2, but there were so many people still coming in from the two-mile that they made us wait until 2:15. The lady who was giving directions over the loud speaker didn't realize the loud speaker wasn't working properly so none of us could hear her. Another runner asked me what she said, and I had no idea. The next thing we knew, people started running and cheering. The race had begun and we didn't even know it!! But I followed the crush of the crowd, pushed the start button on my Garmin and was on my way.

Some people brought dogs with them, even though they technically weren't allowed in the race. About 30 steps into the run, this speed demon tried to cut in front of me and stepped on a small dog that I was attempting to run around. The poor thing yelped so loud and fell on its side. I gasped, and had to move quickly to the right to avoid running over it myself. I think it was OK. It sure startled the hell out of me, though.

The course starts out in downtown Ferndale, goes around the fairgrounds, around a bunch of huge fields and back the way you came, finishing where we started. The first mile I ran way too fast. I was following some people, the pace felt good, and I was checking my buddy Garmin, but I know now I should have slowed down. About midway through the second mile, I got a horrible cramp in my side. I had to slow down a bit then until it let up. The third mile seemed to go on forever, since most of the roads were long, flat and straight. They were never ending, it seemed!! The last mile was a bit better, especially since we were headed back into downtown where people were there to cheer us on. I was scanning the crowd to find Tim and the kids. I finally spotted them and Tim took my picture. A few seconds later I was crossing the finish line and I was so happy!! I forgot to stop the Garmin for a few seconds, which made me mad at myself.

I don't know what my official time is yet, but Garmin said 48:41. I was very happy with that!! I kept my overall pace under 12 minutes a mile, which is more than I could have hoped for.

I will post the official time and place after it's put on the Internet. And Tim took some pictures, so I will post those too. Overall, it was a great day!

Race stats:
Distance: 4.1 miles
Time: 48:41 (per Garmin)
Pace: 11:51 minute/mile

Mile 1: 11:01 (way too fast!)
Mile 2: 11:46
Mile 3: 12:18 (yeah, I got a little tired here)
Mile 4: 12:17
1/10 mile: 1:17 (12:09 pace)


The official race results are up. I must have started my Garmin a little too late because my official finish was a couple seconds slower than the Garmin said. But that's still OK. I am happy with how I did:

Time: 48:44
Pace: 11:53 minute/mile
Finished 119 out of 209 in the 4.1 mile race. Finished 11th out of 20 in my age division.

On a side note, almost 700 people did the 2-mile race. Wow!!!


Nikki said...

ohh great report!!! Sucks about cramps but glad you got rid of them :)

GReat results...congrats to you Michelle!!

J~Mom said...

YAY!!! YAY!!!!! YAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

You did awesome!!!!!!!!!!!!! Great job!! Great pace and way to overcome the sidecramp!!!!!!!!


Laurel said...

Congratulations!!! Great race report!