City: Raleigh, NC Date: 03/02/2013
Weather: mid 40s and windyvby late afternoon (3:00 start time)
Course: “flatter”… pffft… I wish RDs would stop putting that in the course descriptions here… it is still hilly
Summary: Guinness Book of Records attempt Kilt Run, bag pipes, and a head cold… slowest 8k so far.
I am a member of only 2 run groups: the Nog Run Group and one through my gym, Lifetime Fitness. I like both and there seem to be cross-over between the groups, but, of the two, I usually try harder to make the Nog run group because I like the routes and I prefer the bigness of it, even if I don’t usually talk to or run *with* people. Nog puts on 2 races a year now: the St. Paddy’s day 8k in early March and a new companion Oktoberfest 8k in mid-October. Last year’s Oktoberfest 8k was the first race in a really long time where I logged a mile in under an 8:00mm pace, AND substantially so to the point where I kinda bragged a little about it which kinda led my friend to misunderstand me which kinda led to my 10k PR in the City of Oaks 10k for 2012.
So…. my expectations *may* have been somewhat elevated for this race…. add to that a nice little cold and I am surprised I did as well as I did.
To boost registration, the organizers of this race throw in all kinds of things like a chance to win a trip to Germany and 2 tickets for free beer. I would have registered for the race regardless of the chance to win the trip (I mean… I’d love to go to Germany and all and would never pass up a chance to go, but that wasn’t the reason I registered… and I didn’t win anyway, so…) and the beer – eh – I don’t drink it anyway and always give my tickets away. I wouldn’t say this is my favorite race – I skipped it last year – but I have enjoyed this race in the past and I’m starting to enjoy the 8k distance. It is so weird – 4.97 miles – it messes with my OCD just a little, but that’s kind of what makes it fun. After talking about it with a friend, I realized this area has *several* 8k races that seem to have just popped out of nowhere – these are just 2 of at least 6 I can think of (2 of the other 6 are on Thanksgiving day!)
So… I’d be running it anyway.
but… shortly after I registered, I discovered they were going to try for the Guinness Book of World Records for the most number of people running in a kilt. hmmm…. reeeealllllyyy? I thought to myself – ok… ok… that’s only 200 meters, but how fun would it be to do that?!?!? I’m in! I don’t have a kilt, but, whatever, I’ll figure it out.
I went to get the bib for the race, and lucky me (haha) they had some kilts for sale. ah… ok. I’ll have one of those. Also, to count in the records, I had to wear it with a belt. I don’t wear belts. Sorry. I have never liked them. I wore them when I was told I had to, but they were usually the first thing off when I got a place (usually my car) when I could remove it. I think they make me look stocky and I hate them. So… I don’t own one. $30 and a Target trip later, I had my kilt and my (ahem) belt, and my Nog club shirt, and my bib and my shoes and I was ready to race.
I am usually of the opinion that, unless I physically cannot walk to the start line, damnit, I’m going to do that race. I have only one DNS but that was only because of an injury that, quite frankly, I couldn’t walk to start, so there was no way I was running .1 mile, let alone the other 3 for that 5k. In the case of colds, however, if it is just a wee head cold like this, I’ll usually go. Running tends to clear me up. I do have to remember, however, that it is in my best interest to reset expectations if I do. I have a tendency to believe that, even when I’m injured or in some way ill that I can still do the same things I can when I’m well.
Kiddies, you cannot.
If you run while you’re sick, be ok with the slowest time in the race. It still bothers me a little, but I have my sights on a couple of 8k races to hopefully erase this time. And, for the record, my PR time is 56 seconds faster, so the range isn’t that big for this distance yet.