Since August 1, I've flown to northern California, driven to Lake Tahoe, San Francisco, Las Vegas, all around L.A., and back up to the East Bay. Then yesterday, I flew back to Washington. Whew.
RBF Meet-up!: Here's a photo of me and 21st Century Mom last Saturday. I called her up since I was in the neighborhood, and we met for drinks here. It was so nice to meet another RBF'er in person. I enjoyed it, P.! I'll keep you in mind for the Tahoe Relay next year.
NABJ 5K recap: Here's a photo of moi, sweaty and happy, holding my glass trophy for placing 1st in females (and 4th overall) in a 5K in Vegas. There was a photographer snapping pix of me as I broke the finishing line tape, but I can't get hold of him, unfortunately.
I signed up for the small race (only 68 people) at the last minute, deciding to run even though my legs were tired, sore, and heavy from two days of back-to-back hard running.
The temperature was already over 100 degrees at 7:45 AM, when the race started. We ran on by a bone-dry creekbed, on a trail in suburban Vegas, in the Mojave Desert. It felt like I was running on the moon. The landscape seemed lunar - barren and devoid of vegetation.
Too fast!: I started at the front of the pack. I didn't have time to warm up, and almost immediately, my legs, and especially, my hamstrings, screamed in protest. Only one woman and two men were ahead of me in the first mile. I hung just a few steps behind the first woman, clad in green and who clutched a water bottle, which I eyed enviously.
A race volunteer at the mile 1 marker called out our splits: "7:15, good job!" she said to me. I winced. 7:15?! Once again, I went out too fast. I was trying to hit 7:30's, and perhaps even a few seconds slower because of the heat and my tired legs. I knew I couldn't sustain 7:15/mile for 2.1 more miles in the condition I was in.
Despite that, I overtook the woman several minutes later. I took a wrong turn at about Mile 1.5, and lost about 10 seconds double-backing onto the trail. Then another woman, this time in orange, ran by me. I hung on her shoulder.
But at Mile 2, I was starting to flag, big-time. My throat was parched and my legs felt leaden. That didn't worry me so much. What did was that I was literally dizzy from the heat. Cursing, I thought, "Just do the best you can. And whatever you do, for God's sake, don't walk."
A man breezed by me. Damn it. At Mile 2.5, my legs seemed to weigh 100 pounds each. It was a huge effort just to keep moving forward. Orange woman was getting away. But I still had her in my sights.
And then I saw the finish line about a quarter-mile ahead. I turned on my (paltry) after-burners, and started to close the gap between us. I got within 50 feet of her. And then orange woman stopped cold in her tracks, bent down to catch her breath, and started walking!
I couldn't believe it. Who starts walking that close to the finishing line?! I almost said, "C'mon, the end is in sight!" But I didn't jinx myself.
Breaking the Tape: It was cool to break the the finishing line tape. That's never happened to me. Unfortunately, because I am a ham, I slowed down just before I crossed the finishing line so the race photographer could snap photos.
I realize I'm splitting Talmudic hairs here, so I'll stop complaining. And I'm lucky I didn't overheat, as I was so dizzy and dehydrated after the race that I had to grab a tree to stay upright. I felt better once I drank a bottle of water and ate a little bit of a bagel.
Ah, well. I haven't told my coach yet about the race. Not sure if I will, as he probably won't be thrilled with my time. Sigh.