Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Veteran's Day, 11k

I had never seen an 11k race before (they also offered a 5k), so you know me, I had to do it. The National Veteran's Day Run on Sunday, Nov. 10th, was.. interesting.

First let me say that I in no way regret running this race at all. 

Lisa & I after our first 11k
That said, it was frustrating in a few ways. First, packet pickup was scheduled for two or three days before the race, with race day pickup costing $11.00. That's pretty normal, so no issue there. I don't live in Wichita, though, so I opted to pay $3.64 to have my bib mailed to me, and could pick up my t-shirt on race day. Two days before the race, I receive an email saying that the packet pickup was cancelled, and race day pickup would be free of charge. Again, I already had mine mailed, and I'm still ok with all of this. On race day, I head in to pick up my t-shirt, as directed, and am told that my timing chip (shoe chip) and bib aren't any good, that they had switched timing companies last minute and I'll need a new bib (with a timing chip in it). Now it's a little annoying that I paid to have my bib delivered, but still, this really doesn't upset me.

I met up with Lisa who was running the 5k, and told her about the bib situation. We go back in to change out her bib and she decides (with a little pressure) to run the 11k with me!

The turnout wasn't nearly as big as I expected at this race, but I believe it was the first year they've held it in Wichita. And, the weather was pretty cold. Wimps.

About 1/2 mile into the run, my legs told me I had chosen unwisely - remember, I had run a 10k the day before and I've also been having ridiculous fatigue. Also, I worked Friday and Saturday evenings until 10 p.m. and had to get up at 4:30 a.m. to make it to the race site on time. Not offering excuses, of course, but reasons.

For the first couple miles, Lisa and I maintained a 10-something minute a mile pace. Definitely not a bad pace for me. I did struggle a bit to keep up with her. She informed me later in the race that she runs for speed.. I run for distance. I think we're going to make a really good team, her speeding me up, and me pushing her for distance.  We slowed down dramatically (and by "we" I mean "me") and kept up a slower pace that I averaged in my head to be about 11:30/mi. We're still ok. After a bit, Lisa starts to walk, and I've never been so effing happy in my life about that, and I slow waaaaay down to barely a jog (I don't like to walk during races, but I've got no problem with hardly running!) to stay with her. The rest of the race was a slow jog/walk/run combo. We finished at about 01:21 (I can't find official results yet).

Now, the annoying part. While our time wasn't bad it still could have been better. We got "lost" three times during the race. There were forks in the course and we had no idea which to take, and there were no volunteers to direct us. We actually had to stop a few times, wait for the couple behind us, and ask which way they thought we should go! We went through the Finish/Start Line backwards, because instead of going right at the last fork, we went left. It only knocked about a 10th of a mile off our route, but still, the fork should have been manned. I was like "Lisa! What are you doing?! That says START!" because I'm totally anal about distance, you know! Believe me, at this point, neither of us really cared, though.

There was also only one water stop, at the beginning, and the same one during the 11k second lap. They offered bottles of water instead of cups, but this is entirely a preference thing for me, because I hate carrying anything while I run. Afterwards, there were no goodies! I'm used to bananas and OJ and pancakes and biscuits and, you know, food! The race organizer directs us inside for our medals and we chat with him a bit, telling him about getting lost, etc. He's very apologetic, and tells us he literally just took over the race a day or two before. He asks us to return for the next one in '14 and promised we'd see a huge difference. We assured him we weren't upset (and we weren't), and that we'd had fun (we really did!), and that we don't regret running it (I didn't, and I don't think Lisa did, either).

I truly don't regret this race, and I do plan on returning in '14. It's for a great charity, Folds of Honor, and that's good enough for me.

Just work out the bugs for next year, guys!

I adore the medal, and I really like that it says "Finisher", because I haven't yet placed, and receiving a medal seems to, for lack of a better word, cheapen it, when you merely finished. (I do NOT want to indicate here that finishing any race is a small feat. This is just a personal thing.) So when I get a "Finisher" medal, I like it to say that. Now, I know what I just said about medals, and now I'm going to say that I RUN for BLING. Runners who place in these races receive separate medals that tell their place. Never stop giving medals!

Lisa did point out since, that there were only three in our age group, so had they offered age group awards, we did, in fact WIN!

Thank you, Lisa for running this with me! I'd have been SO lost on that course without you and you really pushed me to finish the damn thing. There was no way I was going to give up with a witness! 

Afterwards, we meet up with Jen at Panera Bread where I had the most amazing (ok, first ever, but still so yummy) roasted tomato and feta soufflé. I love meeting up with these two, they're both wonderful people and so inspirational to me! I believe we're all doing a 10 miler together soon. I'd better boost my training!


Lisa said...

I love you Chelle! You crack me up. We are a good team! Let's go 10 miler!!!
Btw. Official results for this race can be found on the Oz Endurance website.

Chelle Shock said...

I'm not ready, but I'm taking a cue from you and doing the 10 miler like you did the 11k!

Women's Guide said...
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