Soon, this will be renamed the "Terrible Toe Nail Chronicles" if I keep it up. But let's not go there yet.
I am tired beyond tired right now, so suffice it to say I probably met or exceeded my expectations of myself. AND - this is the most amazing event ever. Of course, it was in the 80's on the lake front, there was a band, there was beer, and - did I mention it was in the 80's and there was beer?
I completed my first ever 8K. The world's largest 8K, in a field of 40,000 participants. AWESOME.
OK, before I pass out, I'll summarize for now.
It was a great course, except the part going a full mile west on Jackson. One full mile straight? Really?
Lower Wacker stunk, as always, which was somewhat refreshing.
5K was fine.
Over heated about mile 4. Walked about 4.3-4.4-ish.
Sprinted the hell out of the last stretch down Columbus from Roosevelt to Balbo (which is *about* where the finish line was). Would have cried the whole time walking 'til the end, but, was so dehydrated and exhausted, I just couldn't tear up.
Turns out I did fine.
Started at about 17.5 mins (in corral start D out of A-H).
Ended about 1:01-ish.
Official chip times to come in the next 24-36 hours.
In the end, I was pissed as hell. I reluctantly took a Gatorade cup at the end, and literally gagged it down, nearly puked. Once I got that down and calmed down a bit, I was better. When Kelly, my running mate, did the math for me and confirmed that we'd done our sub-45 minute race as we'd hoped, I felt so much better. I'm still not feeling like I did my best because I walked near the end, but, I know in my heart of hearts that for my first ever 8K, and my second time EVER doing 5 miles, I did pretty darn well.
It was warm. I admit that I was overheated. I nearly ripped my shirt off at mile 2, but, kept it on. I couldn't break pace.
Scenery, crowd, and other runners and their costumes were enough incentive to go as far as I did. By mile 4, though, the heat and intensity of our pace caught up with me and I gave in. Even with Kelly as my running mate. Still, I think I was less than a minute behind her finishing, which is fine. I hauled ass in that last stretch, and I am not kidding. I think I made up for much of my walking in that little stretch.
I had blog posts, FB statuses, comments to friends, random thoughts, and all kinds of crap going through my head during the whole race. Foster The People should have been most of my play list as it turned out. Oddly, I walked during Black Eyed Peas. WTF, who does that? LOL
For my first 5 mile race, it was amazing and perfect, in hindsight. I am prepared for next weekend's 5 miler, and don't care if I walk or what. I won't know anyone running, so I can do what I like. Also, I know I've done it once and will probably be fine. It's supposed to be cool from now 'til probably June, more seasonable, so I'll be back in the comforts of cold/cool weather running.
I'm so glad I did this race and have no regrets. I am now less afraid of our 10K track that we'd set out to do this season, and am entirely confident. And hot. And confident. Even hot confident.
Thank you to the Gods who bestowed this perfect day upon us. The weather, the race, the beer, the great friends, my great family, it really couldn't have been better. Well, unless I'd won a big Lottery, but I guess I'd have to play first, so I won't count that.
Happy Shamrock Shuffle!!