Since 2011, I have run back-to-back half marathons at the New Year's Double races in Allen, Texas. The races are convenient as I live in the city. The course consists of lapping a giant, wide open park (the park is mostly soccer fields), running up a bike path, circling a small park then returning on the bike path, before lapping most of the park again. The half marathon does this twice, the full does it four times. The 3-ish miles which utilize the giant park are subject to the wind if it is windy. Besides the fact that winter in north Texas is ALWAYS windy, the blazerkids have played about a zillion soccer games at this park so I know how windy this place can get. Most years, I have run the race in shorts. This year, it was 24 degrees on NYE and 14 degrees on NYD with windchill of zero, so I ran in tights. Having lived the first 24 years of my running career in Michigan, I am well versed in running the cold, but day two was the coldest weather I have run in the past 9 years, since moving to Texas. New Year's Eve
: Since I started back running from my tibia injury just 7 weeks ago, I did not have hopes for running well. Nearly all my miles since coming back have been run in the 10:20-10:40 range. I have creeped the pace up a bit and when I run with my girls, they drag me along at a faster pace. I no longer care what my race times are, I run for fun. That said, this race gives out champagne flutes as AG awards and I have received at least on AG award each year since 2011. As such, I really wanted to win one this year. I started out faster than I thought I should, but managed to maintain throughout the race. At about mile 9, I noticed a woman who looked to be in my AG (50-54) running right behind me. Right. Behind. Me.
As I train with the skinniest women in my city, I often offer to run in front of them so as to block the wind. I do so because they are my friends and I love them. When some random woman stays on my heals to take advantage of my fat butt blocking the wind for her....without asking or offering to share the task.....it is irritating. When we go to the final mile, I pushed the pace to get to rid of her and finished about 20 yards in front of her. My overall pace was 9:30...some faster, some slower....finishing in 2:05:27. She came over to thank me for "motivating her" to run faster and we went to the tent where they had computers so we could our results. I ended up 3rd in my AG and she was 5th.....in the 35-39 AG. I was no longer pissed she drafted off of me because I honestly thought she was almost 20 years older and I got my champagne flute! #Iampetty
New Year's Day
: The second day of the races is always less competitive as it is after all, New Year's Day. Since I can down a bottle of red wine the night before a marathon, running a half isn't too much of a challenge after a night of "fun". That said, running a half marathon the day after running a half marathon, well, that is kinda like running a marathon. (not really, but kinda) The fact is was a windy 14 degrees and zero wind chill, resulted in a lot of people not showing up. No disrespect to the native Texans who will read this, but y'all can be a bit of a candyass when it comes to bone-chilling, running conditions. (I
you redraider!) Anyhoo, I sat in my car until 90 seconds before the race started. I started out a bit creaky, picked it up, then slowed down because I really didn't care about my time or how I finished. I wore three layers on my top (I had only worn two the day before) and while it was fine for into the wind, I was actually kinda stuffy when the wind was at my back. I finished ten minutes slower than the day before, but since there were far fewer runners, I took second in my AG, so I got another champagne flute. When I got home, blazerboy asked what my fastest ever time was at the race and when I told him it was 1:46, he rolled his eyes that I placed in my AG running almost a half hour slower.
Needless to say, I "forgot" to do the laundry he asked me to do for him yesterday.
Now that these races are over for another year, I will go back to not caring about how fast I can run. For the next 364 days, I will be candyassed, fake Texan.