Butterflies galore! At least in the pit of my stomach, shortly after filling out the paper registration form and pinning the race bib to my favorite racing t-shirt (lightweight, grey, short-sleeves that adequately cover my shoulders and a modest neckline more reminiscent of a dude’s shirt rather than show-as-much-clavicle-and-chest shirts that are typical of women’s active wear).
The Whitewater K9 5K/10K Run/Walk start line was a mere five-minute drive from my parents’ house (the morning after a 300-mile drive down to Wisconsin). Running a race in my hometown made the wait time for the race start seem short as I chatted with family friends, plus the race started five minutes early! I was already planning to visit my folks, but I didn’t find out about this race until three days prior–hence the pre-race jitters. Fortunately I had a brand new pair of shoes (of course it’s recommended to never race in a shoe you’ve never stepped foot in…) that I was excited to try out.
After a brief warm-up of some strides and dynamic stretches, I joined the crowd of 130 or so runners/walkers–an assortment of kids, adults, and dogs. Sun shining, a murky Cravath Lake on our right, off we went down the brick-lined lakefront. I maneuvered around a few kids and a couple of dogs before settling in to my comfortably hard pace.
The course, well-marked with orange cones and painted paw prints, followed paved streets through a nicely shaded walking path with trees on either side. I passed one young girl who beat me to shout “good job!” and another couple of kids (awesome to see active youth enjoying a road race) around half way. Out on the course it felt much warmer than standing idle by the small lake. Mile two or so looped us back and I told myself to just hold on… The pain is temporary… Unfortunately a guy passed me in the last 100 meters and although I crept closer and closer to the lead woman, I still ended up second female overall. Not bad for a last minute race on Saturday morning.
I officially finished in 23:17 and 7th place overall.
Next race: Trail 5K at French Regional Park in Plymouth, MN