Monday, May 3, 2010

Race Report - Albuquerque Run for the Zoo 10k

This was my first 10k ever and it. was. amazing! I think I really liked racing that distance (not that there's much "racing" for me, but you know what I mean). The weather was confused as to what time of year it was - it was May 2 but about 35 degrees and had snowed/rained the day before. Not typical balmy May weather, and as such, most of my winter running stuff has been packed and put in storage. Luckily I had a couple of things with me and the jacket that I got from No Boundaries just a couple of weeks ago.

The race is funky little loop thing that starts right by the zoo, cuts through a very small portion of the zoo and then hits a long go south on this street, turn around and go north, pass the area that you enter this street, turn around and go south, and then cut through some neighborhoods to the finish. So, in short, you can see everyone ahead of you a few times (and be reminded that you are at the back of the pack). I went into this with one goal - run the entire distance. No walk breaks. Not even for water. I've done a six mile training run without walk breaks once before, but half way through this race, I realized that I'd stopped in the middle of it to chat with a couple of this was new for me.

I paired up with my friend, D, not knowing that she had the same goal, and we took off. Things were going great - sometimes she'd pull a little ahead, sometimes I pulled ahead, but we were side by side for the most part. Until Mile 2. That's where we met the Pink Ladies. This was another running duo (obviously women wearing pink) who decided to time their walk/run intervals to us. They'd walk...we'd catch up and pass them...they'd run till they passed us by a good little distance and then walk...we'd catch up...etc. They were annoying, but not enough to make me want to scream, even though one of them punched me in the side thanks to flailing her arms about as she walked when I tried to run past her.

But then we met The Group of Doom. This was a group of three women, all of them slightly older than D and I but far more in need of a good throat punch. They'd walk, all three side by side (thus, taking up most of the road) and peek over their shoulders every few seconds. As soon as we got even to them, they'd take off as fast as they could for about 30-60 seconds, and stop to walk, again peeking over their shoulders. This annoyed me to no end. Maybe it's because we'd already been dealing with the Pink Ladies when we met The Group of Doom...maybe it's because they spread out and walked side by side, taking up the entire street and making it hard to pass through them...maybe it was the fact that they were so blatantly using us as a target. The fact of the matter is, I'm slow...I get passed all the time, so it won't hurt my feelings if you pass me and stay up there. On the other hand, I understand how it is to be in the back, but hey - someone's gotta be last and it isn't always going to be me!

Anyway, thanks to D's "relax, ignore them" comments, we finally tired them out and stayed ahead around Mile which point, D grew wings and took off. I managed to hang with her for a few minutes, but I knew that if I wanted to finish without puking, I'd have to let her go. I ended up finishing a little behind her in 1:18:43 (according to my Garmin, I haven't found official results yet). Even though this would be an instant PR thanks to the fact that it was my first 10k, this is faster than I normally do 6 mile training runs - by about 3 minutes - so I'm pretty excited.

Next up:
Laying on a beach in Belize: May 15-21
Not really sure after that...maybe Will Run for Wine 5k?