Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Charlottesville Women's 4 Miler - 2014 Recap

I recently wrote a very belated post about the running I did in August, mostly emphasizing that I had barely done any! This was even with the extra effort I made to get in some miles in preparation for the Women's 4 Miler. I remember feeling unprepared last year for the 4 Miler, but this year was even worse. And then, to add onto that, I came down with a cold 5 days before the race. Joey caught the cold about a week before I did, so I unfortunately knew what to expect. In the days before the race, I barely had enough energy to do my normal activities, let alone go out for a run. The last run I ended up doing before the Saturday race was on Tuesday. I had planned on doing a run on Thursday, and a little shakeout jog on Friday, but couldn't muster the energy.

Instead, I spent as much time as I could resting. On Friday, I walked a mile to the packet pickup for the race, and even that felt taxing. I was in such a fog! Everyone there was so happy and excited, that it helped pick me up a bit. I remembered from the previous year, that they sold race tees from earlier years, and made sure to bring cash with me. I picked up the 2012 shirt (I already had the 2013 shirt from last year) and a pair of running socks, for a total of $8. The 2012 shirt was pink with silver writing, the new 2014 shirt was HOT pink with white writing, and the 2013 shirt I got last year was baby blue with pink writing. All of the shirts are made by the same company, and fit exactly the same - I really like the fit, so I'm excited that I have three of them now!

With the combination of general lack of training, and feeling really crappy, I decided my only goal would be finishing. That was it - there was no way I could make any pace goals. The cold was completely in my head at this point, with congestion, headache, and runny nose. I had some doubts as to whether I would even be able to finish the race!

In the end, not only did I finish the race, but I was just under a 10 minute pace! I definitely didn't feel great during it, and there was a point around 2.5 miles, where I just wanted to stop. I was so glad that I pushed myself through that point, and that I did the race at all. Joey was great, and came out to support me, even though he wasn't through with the cold himself.

One thing I'll note - this is the only race where the distance on my gps device (garmin watch in this case) was actually shorter than the official race distance. Usually I end up tracking slightly longer than the official distance (10.08 miles for the 10 Miler, 5.08 miles for the 8k, 6.42 for the 10k and 3.21 for the 5k - okay, you get the point). This time, the garmin had recorded 3.94 miles for the 4.00 mile race. Last year I used runkeeper, which recorded 4.07, although I've noticed that runkeeper always over-estimates mileage. Either way, this time I had the pleasant surprise of finding that my calculated pace was actually faster than what I was seeing on my watch!

Official results:

Everything set up, the night before the race. This was the first race where I actually wore the race shirt. I think that I can be picky about what I wear when working out, and don't like wearing anything new. Since this year's shirt was exactly the same as last year's (except the color), I knew I already liked it. The 2012 shirt is seen in the bottom left - it's slightly darker in color than the 2014 shirt. And what do you wear when you're wearing a neon pink shirt? Bright orange shorts, of course!

In my typical "post-race" stance. Why do I scrunch my face up so much when I smile? 

My post-race food. Since clearly, running 4 miles entitles me to eat 3000 calories, all in carbs
Btw, that bagel at the top (in the shape of a ribbon) was the best thing ever. I believe it was cherry vanilla with walnuts? Panera needs to make that all the time

Also, I love my new running socks (pictured below)! They only had size large, which I believe is one size too big, but I think they still worked out okay. I would definitely buy more pairs.