So it turns out that a little bit of this:
And a whole lot of this:
makes for an awesome golden birthday. However, it may or may not result in feeling like death for a day and a half.
This Just In: lots of sugar and lots of adult beverage are probably not the best fuel before your longest race ever. [just a thought.]
But hung-over or not, I couldn’t argue with race day when it included facing my first 10K with a beautiful scenery and beautiful friends!
On Thursday morning, my goal was to finish the 10K in 75 minutes or less.
After a long night of drinking, Friday morning my goal changed to simply “finish the 10K.”
When I woke up Saturday morning, feeling hung-over day two, my goal changed to “start the 10K.” I was feeling ROUGH.
Luckily, I had an all-star support team ready to push me on the trail. Cynthia and Emily had come over Friday night for a blogger slumber party and were such an encouragement to get me moving bright and early. When we got to the packet pick up, we were super happy to find Courtney, Jen, and Amanda.
I was also excited to meet Mr. SweetToothJay and Courtney’s college roommate, Eileen. Not long after, we found Melissa who came out early to support us, even though her first triathlon was the next day! Dedicated spectator, alert!!
Jen’s boyfriend Chris was running, too! He was really excited to be hanging out with all of us lady bloggers 😉
The Albany Spring Off 10K took place on part of the Mohawk Hudson River Bike & Hike Trail, which is part of the state-wide Canalway Trail that follows the Erie Canal from Buffalo to Albany. The race start was delayed when the out and back had to be rerouted because of some trail flooding, which added another tenth of a mile to the race.
The way I was feeling, I was thrilled 😉
Actually, the trail wasn’t too bad. I felt okay the first mile and a half or so, and took a small walking break through the first water station. Not too long after, we were rerouting through some very fun muddy grass. The mud and change in terrain made things a bit more challenging, but I think that this helped me stay motivated to keep on moving.
Soon, I was back on the road, approaching the half way point and so happy to see Jen and Courtney who administered much needed high-fives and “Hooray!” greetings. These friendly faces kept me focused on the goal, and I was more than excited to get to the turn around just a couple of minutes later.
For some reason going back through the mud and grass area was a lot easier the second time around. I knew which areas to gravitate towards to skip past puddles, and found myself back on the pavement in no time. After taking a moment to walk through the water station again, I moved forward knowing the end was near.
When I saw a sign up ahead that read “One Mile to Go!” I looked at my watch and realized I was going to make it under my ORIGINAL goal time. I was really excited – I pushed forward, and though I felt like death, I started to feel quite emotional. As I approached the finish line, I looked ahead and saw my friends cheering me on and I started tearing up.
“I am running a 10K. Thanks to the love and support of these people. And the strength and dedication I’ve somehow found.”
Then I told myself to get my act together, sucked up the tears, and smiled my way over the finish line. [I LOVE LOVE LOVE this photo of me smiling, Chris taking pictures, and Jen cheering. I am SO THANKFUL for the encouragement I’ve received from these two in my running adventures the past year!]
First 10K – done!
Under 75 minutes – done!
Super muddy new running shoes – done!
After the 10K, I walked the 5K with Cynthia and Emily. It was a great way to stretch out my legs after the race.
I should say, I STARTED to walk the 5K with Cynthia and Emily – because it would seem that Emily got bit by the running bug!! Look at her go!!