Carmel KeyBank 8K – April 20, 2013
Let me preface this blog with that all week long it was been 80 degrees and sunny here in Indiana. Then Thursday comes with rainstorms and a cold front. Friday morning arrives, no sun, no open toe shoes, no short sleeve shirts… major bummer. Where did Spring go??? And of course, it had to be the day before my 8K.
So I get up this morning around 6 AM , mind you, the 8K doesn’t start until 8 AM, but there is limited parking. Parking at huge events gives me anxiety because I don’t want to be driving around for 20 minutes looking for a place to park. Knowing that the Carmel Marathon and Half Marathon start at 7:30 AM, I busted over to Carmel to ensure a good spot. Once a good parking spot was secured, I proceeded to sit in my car for 30 minutes or so with the heat on to stay warm.
I forgot to mention that it was freakin’ cold outside this morning. I loathe running in jackets and after my jacket debacle at last year’s KeyBank 8K (the ties kept hitting me in the face), I decided to layer it up this year. So I geared up with a running tank, long sleeve dry-fit shirt, and my race shirt over that, long pants, ear warmers, and running gloves. Once I got out of my car, this kept me warm for the length of time it took me to get to the only open building in the plaza which took all of 5 minutes to walk there. I took the advantage of the warm building to update my Twitter status and stretch for a few minutes before it was time to head back out into the cold.
As I was walking towards the start line, a voice calls out to me and says, “Hey, aren’t you late?”
I said, “Excuse me?”
“Didn’t the race start like 30 minutes ago?” I look over to see who is talking to me and it happens to be some kid at the National Guard tent. So I politely told him that the marathon and half marathon began at 7:30 AM and I would be participating in the 8K which starts in a few minutes, so no I wasn’t late. I am never late for a race. He wished me luck and I went to find my place in the corral.
After saying high to a few people that I knew, it was time to start. I started my mapmyrun app on my phone, pushed play on my Run Playlist, and took off. Guns and Roses’ Welcome to the Jungle set my run to a good start and a good pace. There is something about rock that just puts me in a good run mood. There is nothing like it. I quickly and easily set my pace for the first mile and got into my groove. Before I knew it, I had already hit mile 1, according to my app I had averaged an 8:22 mile. Not too bad considering I had been consistently running around my neighborhood at an 8:54 mile.
Then came the first hill, I remember this hill from last year. Except last year it was misting rain, my hood was tied so that it covered my ears, and the loose strings kept smacking me in the face… luckily this was not the case. It was sunny and the wind was at a minimum and I found a couple people to follow. I rounded the corner onto Keystone Avenue and that was the end of Mile 2 with an average pace of 8:01.
I actually really enjoyed running Mile 3. It was mostly all on Keystone Ave. I guess I loved this part the most because a gap had formed and I was running alone. There were no crowds in front of me to maneuver around, no one creeping up behind me, it was just me, the pavement, and my music (which at this point was Motley Crue Don’t Go Away Mad and Rob Zombie Dragula). You know how sometimes when you are running, you have someone that you are either keeping in your sights or you are trying to pass? I had a teenage boy that I had seen right before the start of the race and he had just took off like a bouncing bunny in the beginning. Well now I had him in my sight. That’s a good feeling. End of Mile 3.
I took the exit ramp up to the roundabout on 126th Street and Thunderstruck came on. I’m not sure what it is about Thunderstruck that really gets you amped up. Maybe its because they play it before sporting events and NFL games, whatever it is, I put that song at the PERFECT point in my playlist. This was it, this was my time to start passing people. See you later teenage boy, I will see you at the finish line. So long old dude that passed me in mile 2. And that was my Mile 4 – average pace 7:45.
Last mile to go and I caught up to my former personal trainer. Last year she ran the half marathon so I was surprised to see her running the 8K. I know she is a fast runner so I felt pretty good that I had caught up to her. The wind started to pick up at this point and instead of trying to pass her, I snuck behind her at let her take the brunt of the wind for me. She taught me well. And so this was it, she would speed up, I would speed up, she would slow down, I would slow down. Eventually she looked behind at me and smiled and I told her to get it. She sped up. I couldn’t keep up entirely but the gap wasn’t too big between us.
And so it was, the last leg of the race, the finish line in my sight. I ran with focus and crossed the finish line. Mile 5 – 8:11.
Now – here is the kicker, according to my app, I averaged an 8:07 pace and ran 5.16 miles. According to the race online results, I averaged an 8:22 pace and an 8K is theoretically 4.97 miles… so who knows which one is really correct. I talked with my former personal trainer and her app said she was running an 8:13 minute mile for the last leg we were on. It’s all good.
I head over to the Race Result tent, wait in line for 30 minutes for the program to start working but since I’m first in line, I dare not give up my spot. She prints my ticket, BOOM 3rd place in my age division. I’ll take it! (and the special pint glass you are giving away to 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place Age Division winners). The boys at the Core Power tent gave me a free case of ready to drink protein shakes to congratulate me on my 3rd place as well. It was a good race!