On Saturday, I ran my 8th River Bank Run 25k in a row. It seems sort of silly to write a full race report about it like I have done in the past (here, here, and here) though. So, I’ll try and keep it brief.
We did the whole expo thing on Friday which is always fun. A bit of a change up this year as I had to work the booth for the Michigan Titanium for an hour. This gave Jennie plenty of time to wander around even get her nails done. What do you think Jon? Freshly painted nails probably falls under than same category as matching tri kits which yields faster times right?
Working the booth was interesting. We did our best to pull the triathletes out of the crowd by looking for M-Dot shirts, hats, and tats. Being a running event, we got some interest from people whom upon finding out it was a triathlon would just say, “I can’t swim” and walk away. Four years ago, I couldn’t swim either. Oh well. Their loss.
After doing my time in the booth, I did a quick spin around the expo with Jennie. I was happy to see Gary from the LED Light Vests had a booth (review here). He had already sold out of all of his human vests and only had dogs vests left.
The weather forecast was up in the air for race morning with showers likely. No surprise there. It has rained for at least a portion of the race every year I have done this race. However, we woke up to clear skies and mild temperatures – the perfect weather for race day. We did bet a little bit of a misty rain, but not even enough to get wet from.
Pre-Race with Jennie. Did I mention that Jennie was running her first ever 25K race????
I really didn’t have a big hairy ass goal in mind for this race. My only goal was to stay under 2 hours so that I can continue to enjoy the benefits of the Two Hour Club. My plan was to go out strong and if I felt good try and maintain that. Otherwise, I would back off and live to
fight train another day.
I felt great for the first half of the race or so. I started out with the 7:00 pace group and settled in a groove. The first couple miles were a little speedy, but once we hit the shaded area along the river, the pace was reigned in a bit. At mile 6, I stopped at an aid station to refill my hand held which caused me to fall off of the pace group a bit. I caught back up in the next mile, but that was last I would see of them.
Rocking my Striders shirt at the Striders cheering section. We love Striders!
After catching back up with the pace group, my stomach started to bother me a bit. Nothing serious, just wasn’t comfortable. Normally, I would have taken a Gu at this point but I wasn’t sure if my stomach could handle it so I passed (bad idea). I kept the 7:00 pace group in sight, but dropped down to a 7:20-7:30 pace. My legs still felt good, but mentally I was out of it and just not in the mood to push myself for some reason.
Best. Final. Miles. Ever. Ok, maybe not the portion through the zoo, but other than that, this is the most fun I have had at the end of this race. I’ve never liked running through the zoo (not the actual animal part of the zoo, but the park area) for some reason. I think Jennie nailed it though when we were talking about it. It is a half mile stretch of windy roads with lots of people, aid stations, rock and roll bands, etc. You’d think the crowd support would help, but it is almost over stimulating. Plus, the windy roads make it so you can’t see that far in front of you and you lose perception of how far you have gone and how far you have to go.
But besides the zoo portion, I had a blast at the end of this race. I knew that I had sub-2 hours locked up pretty easily, so I took it fairly easy. There was no sense killing myself at this race when I still had more training to do over the weekend. By taking it easy, I got to actually take it all in. Normally, I am in a death march to the finish with my eyes dead ahead and focused on only one thing – the finish. This time, however, I had fun high fiving the crowd, recognizing people in the crowd that I knew and encouraging fellow runners on the final stretch.
I ended up finishing in 1:54:33 which I realized this morning is actually a 5 second PR from my previous best in 2010. Whoops! I thought my PR was 1:53-something. Should have gone harder I guess.
I felt pretty crappy shortly after the race and I have narrowed this down lack of nutrition on the run. I ended up not eating either of my Gu which was stupid. Lesson learned.
After I finished, I ran back to gear check and did a quick cleanup and wardrobe change and headed back to the finish to watch for Jennie. In no time, I saw
her bright shoes her turn the corner for the final stretch.
Finishing strong with a smile on her face!
I’m super proud of her for putting in the training and having a great race.
I think Bailey was hoping the balloon was a toy for him.
And finally, I have to share this picture that I snapped while watching for Jennie.
Ah-freaking-mazing. And I am fairly certain that neither of the two women next to him were his guide. The next time someone tells me they can’t do something, I am whipping out this picture.
Thanks for reading!
|Overall Place:||536 / 5696|
|Gender Place:||460 / 3036|
|Age Group Place:||89 / 398|
|Run Pace:||7:23 min/mile|