What the heck was I thinking?!
My husband and I were out on a date night until 2AM the night before the race. Not smart..but okay..I can deal with that. I woke up and scrambled to get ready. Didn't have my normal pre-race breakfast...we were out. Took some time for me to figure out where I was going.
When I got there I registered, and got my stuff.
By the time that I got out of the potty it was 2 minutes till the race started. I was heading to the starting line when I realized that my hands were too empty. I had forgotten my water bottle IN the port-a-potty. I ran back to find it occupied. So I waited for this gentleman to come out. I explain what I did and he said he wondered about that. I grabbed it and ran to the finish line just in time to see them taking off.
There obviously wasn't very good communication about which race was starting when, because 5K runners started taking off with the 10K runners. I started out with intervals of 1:15/1:30 run/walk. That didn't last. I switched to 1/1:30...but that was too much walking. So, when I had it in me, I started running 15 seconds before my running interval started. After a while, I just completely abandoned the intervals and did what I could.
About mile 3, the sun was beating on me and burning my skin. I just felt really over heated. I kept hearing "Wells L's" words in my head..."just take it slow....tummy in, good posture!" That worked pretty well until mile 4.
This is about when I started praying for an injury. Something to take me out of the race. Something that would save me from the this insanity! I kept telling myself (sometimes out loud) "You've got this! You did a 1/2 marathon for Pete sake!" Yeah, but I trained for that. It was about at 4.5 mile marker that the unthinkable happened....
Volunteers had left their posts. I had about 5 people behind me and it had been my goal to keep them there. They were helping keep my pace. All of a sudden, the guy in front of me stops and turns around and says "where are those girls going?!" I turned around and looked. Sure enough, the group behind me that I was so determined to stay ahead of have turned about a 1/2 mile down the road. They kept looking at us and the street that they were getting ready to turn on...as if they weren't sure that it was the way. The guy in front of me says "my wife has done this race before, she must think we were supposed to turn." This makes total sense know that I think of it. There weren't any volunteers directing traffic at the last major intersection that I had crossed. So the guy in front of me and I both turn around and head back. FAN-FREAKIN'-TASTIC!!!!!!! I am now in DEAD LAST. I have NEVER finished last in a race and I was not about to start.
But...I'm pretty dead on my feat right about now and wouldn't you know it...hills. Big tall hills. Thanks. Awesome. To top it off, I'm getting scared. I can't see the group in front of me and there are NO volunteers or police officers around....and I'm running through down town Fort Wayne. Now I'm fighting tears. My first race without a partner or cheering squad..and I get lost and last. So I call the hubs up...choking back tears. He calms me down and tells me to just push through and catch up with the group in front of me. This about when a cop pulls up behind me and asks if I'm okay. I wanted to bawl and just crawl in his car and say "Take me back!" But I didn't. I told him I was fine, just upset that there wasn't anyone posted at the last turn to direct us.
The last mile or so was excruciating! I walked about the rest of the way. There was at least 2 more turns missing volunteers and the 6 mile post was no where to be found.
I didn't finish last...but I DID finish.
I grabbed my food after words and jumped in my car.
(pretty good grub! A wrap, baked layes, an apple, and water)
It was just a really bad experience for me. It wasn't necessarily the course, I just wouldn't chose to do it alone.
My time was horrendous...but I didn't quit...and believe me...I WANTED TO!
Ever have a SUCK-TASTIC race?