Saturday, September 17, 2011

Racing (Or, the One in Which I Brag)

My coworkers at last year's race. I clearly didn't get the memo about taking off my jacket for the photo. 

This morning was one of my favorite days of the year - Race for the Cure in Tulsa.

I wish I had pictures to share, but I don't. Still, it's worth mentioning with or without photographic proof that I was there.

Two years ago on this day, I was keyed up and nervous, because I was about to run my first-ever 5K. It was a pretty big milestone at the time. I had started running a few months before, and the first time I ran, I literally wanted to pass out after a mile on the treadmill. My goal in the race was simply to run the whole thing without walking, which I achieved.

After that, each race I ran, I set a new distance goal. I did a 10K, a 15K, and by November of last year, I was able to run my first half marathon. I'll tell you - there are a lot of blood, sweat and tears that go into training like that. Well, not really much blood or tears, but there was a helluva lot of sweat. Seriously. The bulk of the training for that race is in the middle of the summer. We have to get up to run at 5:45 a.m., just to ensure no one dies of heat stroke on our long Saturday runs. And you know I must love it if I'm willing to get up at 5:30 on a Saturday and drive somewhere to run.

Anyway, I digress. Race for the Cure is a great race. This year it moved downtown, which was FANTASTIC. It's always been by ORU, and that's great and all, but I'm pretty sure I almost fell asleep both times I ran down there. I mean, it was almost an out-and-back course that stayed on Riverside Drive. Pretty-ish, but you stare at a Cherokee Casino for about 2/3rds of the race. Awesome. On this course, we ran right by the BOK Center, through the downtown area, and around some historic buildings. Not that I was really looking at them. Mostly, I was focused on the 55-year old man in grey in front of me, trying like hell to make sure he didn't beat me across the finish line. I wasn't about to let that happen again. (At least it's not like the 6-year old that beat me two years before. Embarrassing.)

The first year I ran, I crossed the finish line at 31:42, which is a really great time for a first race. Or even a third race. Or 15th race. Whatever. I think it's pretty decent.

But I'm pretty sure this year I set a new personal record. The time on the clock was right around 26:30 when I crossed, which means I'm a little under that for chip time. Did you read that? 26:30. That's UNDER 27 minutes, which is my previous personal record. It means I was running at a smooth 8:40 mile through the whole race.

It also means I've been bitten by the speed bug. After the half marathon this November, my next goal will be to start improving my 5K time. I'd like to see a chip time of 24:00 or less by the time I hit my 30th year.

Race me?

1 comment:

Cheri said...

I want to brag on you to everyone!