When my speedy sister called me a few weeks ago to discuss her upcoming trip to DC, she had two requests:
1. Run everyday
So in a addition to thinking about some runs around the monuments, Rock Creek Park, and Run club, I set out to find a race for when she was here.
The Father's Day 8K stood out to me for a few reasons:
1. 8K distance is not as common
2. It was on the C&O canal (a place I hadn't yet run)
3. Race was capped at 300 people (DC has some big races)
4. The path is flat
5. The race was at 6:30 pm (no crazy early morning wake up)
I mentioned the idea to Kristen and immediately she was on board.
We spent the day walking around Georgetown getting "warmed up". Then we stopped by Dean & Deluca for some pre race hydration and used the restrooms to change into our race gear. The race seemed a little hap hazard like all the race bibs were left over from other races (hey, I'm a fan of reducing waste too!), there wasn't any electronic timing, and the small t-shirts were huge.
Luckily when we lined up for the start we were only a few seconds back and once we started the field thinned out quickly. Mostly because we were racing with some FAST people.
The 8K out and back course was on the C&O canal towpath, which is crushed rock and some uncrushed rock. There were a few washout hazards, but mostly a smooth path for running.
As soon as the train whistle blew we were off and soon I could no longer see Kristen. I took off fast propelled by those around me and I finished my first mile in 8:19. A little before I reached the second mile marker a biker was heading towards me warning that the lead runner was on his way back. I looked at my watch, the race had started 15 minutes ago, this guy had less than two miles left. When he flew by I could tell that indeed he was running 5 minute miles. His energy lead me to finish my second mile a little faster at 8:09.
Soon after the lead runner I saw the first female runner in the middle of a male pack and I started counting ladies. I only got to thirteen when I saw my sister heading back! I gave her as much as a "go Kristen" as I could muster. In doing so I lost my lady count, but soon hit the turnaround.
I kept my pace through the turnaround and finished mile 3 a little slower at 8:13. By mile 4 I was getting a little tired and a few people passed me back, but I kept my pace at 8:19. One person who passed me back was an older man (later I figured out he was 70 years old). My competitiveness kicked in and I was wasn't going to let him beat me. I stuck to his heels till I could see the finish. I decided at that point to make my move at a slightly faster pace. Only some other man decided he was going to sprint past me. He was not going to sprint past me. Thats when I picked up my pace to full out sprint for the last 100 meters or so. We tied and my pace for the last 0.97 mile of the race was 7:33.
Official time of 40:43
Female 20-29- 17/46
Kristen finished in 36:55
Female 30-39- 4/33
If you remember the St Patrick's Day 8K (why would you?) I ran it in 47:11, therefore I PR'd by over 6 minutes! I'm pretty happy with that time.
After the race there was water and Georgetown Cupcakes. My first of the famous Georgetown Cupcakes and I couldn't finish it because it was too rich.
I asked my Mom to use my iPhone for a quick photo... which turned in to a too long unsuccessful photo shoot in front of the canal (as demonstrated below).
|photo #1 because it was Father's Day Kristen closed her eyes just like my Dad does|
|photo #2 ground shot|
|photo #3 demonstration on lightly tapping iPhone|
|photo #4 taken while I'm instructing how to take a picture|
|photo #7 last ditch effort is unsuccessful|