I told NO one that this race was another attempt at a sub 30. A part of me was nervous about another defeat, and a part of me wanted the out of "nope, didn't try".
Setting my GPS I headed off to parts unknown. Well, not entirely unknown I'd been to that very location for a fourth of July parade a few years back, but I was a passenger, my husband did the driving and we ended up parking over a mile from the green and walking. Speaking of parking, that was the one thing I was nervous about, where and since it was a small town, would it be obvious. I was right to be nervous, but since I got there early I pulled up behind another car and hoped for the best.
Checking in went smoothly and I got to walk around a bit. I bought a bunch of raffle tickets, less to win awesome items(more on that later) and more to support the Moving Wall.
As more runners showed up, I bumped into another She Runs This Town member and a few Gate City Striders. I chatted with a woman around my mothers age in a Naval uniform. Her stories were different than my mothers stories from the Navy. My mother was an officer, she was enlisted. She talked about how the men treated them like ladies and were careful about their language around the women. She was a photographer but just printed other people photographs. In contrast, my mother's stories involve improving staffing numbers at her station, and arranging honor guards for funerals as it was Vietnam Era. The only policy she's ever mentioned that applied to women was that at the time you could not be pregnant and in the military. Pregnancy was an automatic discharge.
As we started to line up under the fire truck ladder and flag for the anthem, my stomach screamed at me to EAT. I'd left my clif blocks in my car, which was now too far away to claim with moments before the race starting. The volunteers gave out little flags for us to wag for a picture and run with if we wanted to. I did.
|Can you find me? Photo credit: Race|
I can not tell you how happy I was for the water stop, or that the water stop was at the top of a short steep hill. Woohoo an excuse to walk. The problem was, this was the half way point and I knew a sub 30 was still possible if I didn't give up. I also contemplated the days of being in the back of the pack and not really caring about time. But here I was pushing for a sub 30 and it was still within reach. Somewhere after the mile 2 marker I saw unicorns. Yes seriously, two women in unicorn costumes with a decorated car cheering on runners. That gave me a boost of speed and I pushed it another quarter mile, before I started to struggle again.
|Pushing my way to the finish Photo Credit: Race|
As I closed in on the end of the race, I realized while I wasn't going to get my sub 30, I was going to get a new personal record. With that in mind I dug deep and ran the last 0.1 miles to finish in 30:32!
Since I bought a lot of raffle tickets I hung out to see if I won. I was well rewarded for my donation. I won a Her Tribe Athletics tank top and the only hard part was deciding which one to get. I also won TWO entries into the Santa Shuffle, so now I need to figure out who to bring.
|The face you make when you miss your|
goal but still get a PR. photo credit: race