Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Starting 2008 Right

I got up not so early today to enter my first race of the year - the 2008 New Year's Day 5K Resolution Run. The race directors were smart enough to schedule the start for 11 a.m.

I said that I would be there unless it was raining. I woke up this morning, looked out the window and thought, "Darn! It's not raining!" Despite the lack of precipitation, it was about 28 degrees and the wind was wicked! I dressed for the wind (I thought) and arrived about 40 min before the race started. I stayed in the car for a while and when I finally got out I was pleasantly surprised to see that about a dozen Buckeye Striders were also there.

The course was on bike trails around a park in Westerville, OH. It was very flat with trees just on the outside of one side of the park. Because of this, there was NO wind break until about 2.5 miles into the course. Did I say the wind was brutal? Walking into the wind was pretty bad, but because the course was big loops, the wind hit us from all directions for a little bit. Actually, having the wind change direction helped.

When we got to about mile 2.5, and we were close to the trees that blocked the wind, suddenly we were too hot and sweaty. After the race there was plenty of water, hot chocolate and Panera breads.

Overall the race was fine. It's a small race with just a couple hundred participants. It's inexpensive at only $25 last week and we did get a long-sleeved technical shirt. OK, the shirt is an ugly brown, but it is a technical shirt. The course was open long enough for even the slowest participants.

A couple of things I didn't like: it is not chip timed (though I'm sure they do for all of their other races), there was no water on the course (freeze hazard, maybe?), when I checked the race results online, the age group results included up to 30 people per age group, the results are not broken down for walkers, they allowed dogs.

Despite the weather and the dogs, I'm glad I went. What a great way to start the new year - in a fun race with lots of friends!

My official finish time is 45:10 for 14:34 per mile. The finish line clock said 45:24. Deb's finish time is listed as 45:34 even though we walked the entire race side-by-side. Her number was not showing, and it took several seconds to show it to the finish line staff. That's the reason I prefer chip timing. Since we placed 305 and 306 out of 317 entrants, it really is not a big deal. Besides, this race was just for fun. I was 45 out of 48 in my age group and 158 out of 169 women. Add one and you know where Deb ranked.

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