This past March my running partner and I completed the Shamrock run. It was an 8k around the older parts of the city. The weather wasn’t too bad. I think it was in the high 20’s or low 30’s. It felt colder than the past couple of runs I had done. We were located close to the water so that might have been why. A lot of wind comes through that area of town. That’s why it’s a good place for windmills!
There were a ton of people at this race, the facility was very congested. I left early but got caught up in traffic and ended up getting there with 30 minutes to spare. Just enough time to park, run to the hall, check in, try to find my friend, use the bath room, run to the car and back and say hi to a few people. I was having trouble finding my friend and was worried I’d be running without her. But at the last minute I looked behind me and there she was!
We got into place at the back of the pack, tied our timing chips on and did a few stretches. Then it was time to start running! We ran past the start line and were on our way. A few of our friends from work ran by us, that was the last we saw of them during the race. It was down a street, around a corner and then up and down a big hill. I tend to speed up on the hills. I like the challenge and feeling my legs working. Down the hill and around the corner heading to the first water stop. It wasn’t just a water stop – there was beer there too!! The race was already hard, I didn’t want to make it harder on myself so I skipped the beer and grabbed a water. Boy was it cold and splashing on my cold hands! Yikes. Took a few sips then left the bottle on a curb. Too cold to carry.
We stayed mostly with one group of people, passing a few here and there as the race went on. Around a few more corners up another couple of hills then down to the last 2 miles. I was pretty warm up until the last 1.5 miles then I started to go numb. The last section of the course took us closer to the water and down a scenic path, past the grain silos and conservation club and down the last road. We hit the last mile and started running faster trying to come in with a good time. All in all we ran for about an hour to finish the mileage. It was a good race. Right before the finish line I started to cramp up and couldn’t take real deep breaths. After I crossed the finish line I kept walking for a while afraid I would cramp up even more if I stopped moving. By this time most of my warmth was gone. My friend had brought an extra jacket, which was good for her, but I was getting minimal and only brought what I had on.
There was a huge after party. We stayed for a while then headed home. The 8k was the longest I had run ever! We ran the whole time and I felt strong. It was great!