Instead of going out last night, Bri and I stayed in, made a fire and watched season 3 of the Office. Holy H is this show awesome! I bought Bri seasons 1 and 2 for Christmas. We finished those and had to go out and purchase season 3. I love Dwight, but I think Angela may be my favorite character. How have I gone so long without watching this show?!
It was a chill NYE but I loved it. We watched the ball drop and then awakened bright and early this morning for our 5k! I initially planned on wearing my running tights and lululemon jacket but those plans were quickly squashed when I discovered that they were still wet from being washed yesterday. Dang. Instead, I wore my under armour fleece pants, cold gear top, wicking t-shirt and a white fleece. Last night the weather called for upper forties but it was chilly!
The Hair of the Dog 5k was at Mount Trashmore in Virginia Beach. Apparently Mount Trashmore used to be a landfill. Yum. It is now covered with sod (?) and grass and just looks like a huge, random grassy hill. Suprisingly, there is no odor emanating from the depths of the grassy knolls. The premise of the Hair of the Dog is to show up after a night of festivities and run the 5k, hence the 10:00 AM start time. The race even had a formal wear division, where people showed up to race in what they were wearing the night before. Some of the costumes were pretty funny, although I doubt that all of them were worn last night... no one really wears a hideous 80s looking prom dress for NYE, right? I even spotted a few tuxes.
Bri and I arrived fairly early, having not partaken in the "festivities" aspect of the hair of the dog. We walked to get our bibs and disposable chips and it was super windy and freezing! The winds were about 12 MPH, according to the race summary email I later received. I put on my ear wrap and gloves and felt okay, but a lot of people were not dressed for the coldness. We went back to the car to put our race shirts away which, by the way, are actually super cool- black long sleeved with no sponsor bs all over it!
We then headed to the start. Walking to the start line. Lovely Mount Trashmore is on the right.
There was a nice warm bathroom near the start, which I took full advantage of. I definitely wanted to avoid the mishaps of my last race. I won't go into detail but yeah, my stomach hurt at the end of my last race.
At the start line the vibe was really fun. A lot of people were wearing 2010 regalia and shouting happy new year. I was happy to see this, because some of the people we walked past on our way to pick up the bibs were just plain rude. People from the North get a bad rap for being unfriendly when they really aren't, in my opinion.
I was super happy to see a timing mat at the beginning of the start line. I have run four 5ks, and although all of them had timing chips, this was the first race that had a timing mat in the beginning. What is the sense in having a timing chip if they are just going to time you from the gun time? Anyway, the gun went off and we crossed the mat pretty quickly. Initially I was pleased that we were not going to be running through the puddles that I saw on the trail, although this would not be the case later on in the race. We were about a third of a mile in maintaining a 9:30/pace when I saw runners running back on my left. What the H, were they doing an out and back or something? Apparently so. It was strange to have a turnaround so early on, and especially one that didn't leave much room for doing the turnaround. It was fine for the number of runners at the race (480) but any more and it would have been really tight.
The first mile was nice and quick. I stuck to the inside of the course and was able to maintain a steady pace. The only downside to the first mile was a little kid at the beginning that was just kind of bobbling around in front of me- I almost ran into him at one point.
Mile 1-2 went by in blur. There was a water station around 1.5, which was nice. I tried to drink from the cup without much success. We started running around a beautiful lake and saw a pelican flying overhead, which was really neat. You don't see many pelicans in New York.
Running around the lake. Looking nice and exerted.
Miles 2-3 were okay. I started to drag down to a 10:00/mi pace, which is fast for me normally but I needed to keep up the pace if I wanted to finish under 30:00. I got a second wind and picked it up. I got my second wind by playing the game of looking at people ahead of me and trying to pass them. It's a nice distraction. Around mile 2.5 I saw the aforementioned puddles, and there was no avoiding them. I followed a girl ahead of me that ran to the side in the grass, which resulted in some nice mud covered shoes. My socks started to feel wet, which was disconcerting.
As we approached mile 3, I started to feel myself lag. This happened to me in my first race as well. I told Bri I felt myself dragging and he told me to kick it up. I sprinted for the last .10 and crossed the finish line with a chip time of 30:37, averaging 9:53/mile. So close yet sooo far to the sub 30 5k. I am still very happy with my time; I am improving constantly and know I can get there soon!
After we crossed the finish line we were handed a finishing "medal", which I thought was cool given that it was a 5k.
After the race they were offering instant coffee (blech) and instant gatorade, so Bri and I left and went to a bagel shop to refuel.
30:37, 11/28 Age Group (25-29), Overall 219/480.
Overall, this is definitely a race I would run again. There were some minor snafus that were beyond the race director's control (puddles much?), but as a whole, great race.
-fun, friendly vibe
-well-directed and well marked
-nice race t-shirts
-water station appropriately placed
-timing mat in the beginning of the race
-out and back in the first half mile
-instant coffee- blit
Happy New Year everyone! Enjoy the rest of your holiday!
Did you run a New Year's Eve/Day race? If so, how'd it go? If not, have you ever?