I'm being liberal with the distance here. I had to run this race naked, meaning without a garmin--or even a watch. I ran this course last year, and it was a little long. Well, this year the big novelty was that I was running it barefoot. Since I really prefer the sidewalk to the road while barefoot, I ran the most abominable tangents ever....EVER. So that's how I got that extra .1.
I had to tie my toe-chip to my shorts.
The hero of the day was Camille. If it had not been for the fact that I told her I would meet her here (more like begged her to run this particular race), I might have backed out and stayed in my pajamas until 10 this morning. This was my first time to meet someone from the blog who actually lives close enough to run with--fun stuff! She just ran a 5K 2 weeks ago with a time of around 29:30. She has her very first half marathon next weekend, and she was still willing to come do this race so we could meet. Isn't that nice? Everyone from the blog is nice--at least from my experience. I've never met someone from the blog and thought Geez, that person is a little scary, or MAN, they are uglier than their blog picture. It's always Well THAT'S a great person! How fun to finally meet. And so it was today. My general impression of Camille is that she is a very dependable, hardworking, and tranquil chica with the MOST adorable baby girl ever.
This is our "before" picture.
Since this was only Camille's 2nd 5K, I took the liberty of giving her some prerace advice. (The NERVE of me! Really, like I know what's what!) I told her that she had enough fitness to push hard. Start fast, I said, and then when to get to 2 miles, speed up. :) Well, she did a fabulous job and took 2 full minutes off her first 5K just 2 weeks ago. Isn't that amazing? How many people can boast the ability to drop a minute per week in a 5K?
This is our "after" picture. "Supastahhs!"
Now for the actual race... My dear bloggies...my very very dear dear bloggies, can you ever forgive me? I did not push myself as I ought to have done today. I started off with the feeling of just running for the joy of running, and I never really pushed myself beyond those bounds. Sure, I felt a little hot, and there were a couple of times that my body suggested, gently, that it would prefer a bit of a more maidenly pace. But it was not the death-grip wrestle with my pain threshold that I have become accustomed to in a 5K. It was a good tempo run, though. I feel pleasantly tired and shamefully content at this point.
It was a fun race, though. Everywhere I went people were staring at my feet, smiling at me, and even laughing out loud. People were shouting things to me as I passed as if I was something special. I like that, though it makes me blush to admit it. I couldn't hear what anyone said, because I had my music blaring, so I'll just assume that they were saying stuff like "way to go barefoot! You are amazing!" and not "where are your shoes, you lunatic?!"
I had an interesting barefoot experience today: my very first THORN. I've been waiting. It was bound to happen. In Arizona there are these monstrous, 2-pronged thorns that are quite long and very hard (I call 'em "goatheads"). Well anyway, I felt a dull ache in one of my heels before I started and sure enough, one of the prongs from a goathead had broken off in my foot, but part of it was still sticking out (umph. It's more disgusting to write about than it was in real life.) So I just yanked it out. It didn't even hurt, that was the weird part. No blood, no foul. Not to say there wasn't blood--there was, just not from the thorn.
By the last 3/4 of a mile one of my pinkie toes was beginning to feel like I might be getting a blister. By the time I finished, though, the blister had been scuffed off, and there was a bit of blood. Nothing too impressive. I've had worse while wearing shoes from my slightly-too-long-toenails attacking the nearby toes. But I do have a couple of blisters on other toes. I think that when trying to run speedier barefoot, my toes play more of an active role than they do when I am just plodding along at my normal pace. They grab the sidewalk and throw it behind me, whereas while going slow they just pad-pad-pad, touch the ground and come off again.
So what can I say? I enjoyed this race. I beat my time from last year, by just a few seconds, and yet with much more comfort. I got to meet a really sweet & fun chica from the blog, and I got to make a little bit of a scene in a pretty big race. There's really only one downside--I am a boltushka again. That is unacceptable. Oh yeah, AND I got passed by an 80 year-old woman right at the end. Jeez! Well, I can't help if some 80 year-olds are dang tough.
"Man, that old lady was dang tough!"