Oh boy. Where do I begin. I have so many thoughts on this race!
I don’t have many pictures because I didn’t see Vic and Mom throughout the run, and race morning was kind of eventful. Hopefully the professional photos turn out! Let’s go back a few days…
At work on Friday I was chatting with a couple of co workers who were also running Broad Street and they invited me to come with them to the race expo. This was great because I was able to get a ride there and then I just took the subway back to work during my lunch break. Otherwise, I would have had to go on Saturday. Since the expo was near the stadiums, with the Phillies game it would have been a zoo, so I’m glad I got it out of the way on Friday.
On our way to the expo, one of my co workers was saying how he read this thing on the race and how people are upset that so many people are allowed to run in it now (30,000!!!!) and there should be a lower cap on race entries. The article said “Broad Street run is like a 10 mile line for a banana”. I was cracking up at that!
The expo was definitely geared more towards the vendors than the other expos I have been to which are geared more towards the race itself. They had all the vendors lined up in a narrow hallway that you had to walk down to get to the bib pick up. Then you had to walk back through all the vendors to get to the tee shirt pick up. I ended up buying some Sports Beans and Clif Bar (more on that in a minute…definitely a good thing I bought this!) Then I headed back to work.
Friday night was Mom’s birthday. Vic and I took her out to dinner. It was a great way to start the race weekend!
Uneventful. I did my laundry so I wouldn’t have to do it post-race. I studied because I have to. I had really bad pre race jitters all day which surprised me a little because you would think after a handful of races I would be better about this.
I went to Mom’s for dinner and then Mom and Vic walked me home. There was an aerial show going on and the city was sooo crowded. We were laughing because Mom said she didn’t want me to be walking home on empty streets. :) Before we parted ways, Mom said she would text me in the morning. I almost told her not to, but it’s a very good thing that I didn’t! (More on that in a minute…)
I got home and called my best friend while I picked out my clothes and got all my gear together (iPod, watch, key pocket for my shoe).
I got in bed and set my alarm for 5:30, I had plans to meet a co worker at 6:30 and we would take the subway to the starting line. I thought I would fall right to sleep because I didn’t sleep well on Friday night, but I tossed and turned for hours!
6:19: *cell phone beeps* I read Mom’s text: “you up? Good luck! Love you!!!”
6:19 and 20 seconds: oh crap! oh @#$#$%!!!! How did I not hear my alarm! Ok. Don’t panic. Just get ready. It’ll be fine.
I called my co worker to ask if we could meet at 6:35 instead and I hustled to get ready. Then my hair tie snapped. Oh @#$#%^!!! I got a new one and once I was dressed and had my hair up I went to wolf down some oatmeal, which is my favorite pre run meal. I ate 2 bites of cold oats and felt sick to my stomach. So I grabbed my race expo Clif bar and ran out the door. This is not my favorite pre run fuel and my stomach is definitely not used to eating something like that before running, but I needed something and I didn’t have anything to make my oats portable.
I met my co worker and her roommate on the corner of Broad and Spruce and we squeezed onto the subway like sardines.
On the way I munched on my Clif bar and chatted with my co worker and her roomie which was a great way to pass the time and keep my mind off of the impending 10 miles.
When we got to the start we got in line for the porta potties with about an hour and a half to kill. Good thing we had so much time because it took us over a half hour to get through the line!
I was in a slower corral than they were but I decided to hop in their corral so that I could avoid some of the crowd and get a faster start. Soon enough the gun went off and we were off! I lost the two of them fairly quickly because I like running my own race, but I sort of wish I had stuck with them because a few miles later I saw them pass me. Darn.
Anyway, I like running by myself better because I get in “my zone”. This time “my zone” was awesome. My average pace for the first 5 (and possibly 6) miles was 9:35. I was rocking it! I know for sure that it was for the first 5 miles because Vic got a runner tracker text saying that I crossed the 5 mile marker at that time. The next mile was about the same, so let’s go with 6 miles at that pace. My Garmin was all over the place, so I won’t post my splits.
Around mile 4(5?) we passed Hahnemann Hospital and I got a little emotional. I blew a kiss to the air for Daddy.
Around mile 6, I was hoping to spot Vic and Mom and I kept my eyes peeled but I didn’t see them! After talking with them after the race I’m pretty sure I juuuust missed them! They were out for coffee when they got the mile 5 text and they were shocked at how fast I was running, Vic even thought someone had tripped me and stolen my time chip.
Then, it was all downhill. Literally and figuratively. I didn’t write about this the other day because I didn’t want to jinx myself, but after my run on Tuesday, I had a blister. A bad blister. A blister that stressed me out all week. I was hoping that it would just go away. Well after around an hour of running my foot started to HURT. So bad that I had to break my running groove and walk. Then I felt nauseous from starting and stopping. I spent the last 4 miles run/walking. At one point a nice girl came up to me and gave some encouraging words. I started running beside her, but my foot hurt so much. Soon enough I hit mile 8, then 9 (thought I would see Mom and Vic around here too but we missed each other again!), and then the Navy Yard entrance which was just a quarter mile to the finish! 10 mile races are soooo much nicer than half marathons! Those 3.1 extra miles are always tough!!! My unofficial time was 1:47:10.
Then I got my finisher’s medal and water bottles and a soft pretzel. Usually I skip on the soft pretzel post race but I was starving! I chowed down on my soft pretzel and tried to figure out how to get back to the subway. The crowds were insane. It turned out I was walking the wrong direction and when I turned back to make my way through the crowd a lady said under her breath “has anyone seen my dad?” and I joked back “oh yeah I think I saw him right over there” hehe. Finally I made my way to the shuttle which dropped us off at the subway and then I waited for.ev.er. for the subway to leave. Finally I made it back to Center City and met up with Mom and Vic. I showered, Mom cooked post-race brunch, and Mom and Vic both waited on me while I vegged on the couch! Oh and Vic gave me my newest charm for my race bracelet!
While I was walking throughout the race I felt like I was being a little bit of a baby. But when I took my shoe off I realized just how bad it really was. I was beating myself up about my time being slower than I had planned (1:40 or better), but honestly I think it’s a miracle I even finished with such a bad blister. I swore I would never show a picture of my foot on the blog, but I think it’s worth showing. Not for the faint of heart…
Now some reflections. Over the last year of racing I have learned a lot. Some runs are awesome. Some runs are disappointing. Running is hard. Really hard. I can feel down about this race or remind myself that I still kicked those 10 miles butt! It might not have been my fastest run overall, but I have to be proud of those first 6 miles. I really don’t think I have ever run 6 miles that fast before. Injuries happen.
And now for the big reflection…I don’t love running as much as I used to. I am not going to break up with running. I do still love it, just not as much. After all, I do need to add another medal to my medal holder! I want to do other things, like bike and lift. And still run, of course. In fact, I am doing a 5k with Vic and Mom next weekend. But, I think I want to do shorter distances. I have my eye on a couple of 10k races in the next few months. Maybe someday I’ll do another half marathon or even a full marathon. But for now I’m going to change things up a bit and go from there.
That’s the plan. Subject to change of course!
Flyers game 2 tomorrow night!!!