This is the escort vehicle.... cool, huh?
I had neither expected nor trained for a 10K, but when we arrived 3 days ago at Candy Hill Campground, my employer/young friend presented me with a registration form, all excited and happy: "I got you this, it's a great big 10K and it's Saturday!" So I said, "Great, I'd love to run it, if I can start cleaning the bathrooms a little late that day...."
It was huge. 1000+ runners. The winners were from Kenya and Ethiopia. I've never seen such a big 10K. Here's the starting field, from the back of the pack, but you can't appreciate how many runners there are since it's flat.
It was a 4-lane street, and when the race director asked people who expected 50+ minutes to move to the left lanes, there was this mass migration:
I ran my first mile in 11:05, which was good, since I wasn't trained and planned on taking it easy the first couple miles. Second mile split showed 18:XX on my watch, GACKKKK, I didn't think I'd speeded up THAT much, that's gonna kill me right there. Slow down, kiddo. You're not trained. And you're kicking sleeping pills and didn't sleep last night. And you have a cold. You've run marathons and done Ironman's but you haven't run a 10K in 5 years. Slow down.
5K time: 30:xx by the clock. Jee-minetty, I did a 7:xx second mile and a 12:xx third? This is nuts.
Later I realized, the clocks did not, of course, match my watch/chip times. Watch times:
Mile 1: 9:23
Mile 2: 9:07
But I was looking at the clocks, not at my watch, so I was confused and didn't realize what a nice pace I was running, being tired and untrained and all.
Either there was no 4-mile marker or I missed it. At mile 5, I was at 50:26 (watch time.)
Somewhere between miles 3 and 4, I stopped to take this picture, since I wasn't trying for a time or an AG place.
It cost me a few seconds, but so what?
"So what?" turned out to be, it cost me a sub-1-hour 10K. My watch time at the finish was 1:00:12. And it's not even that exciting a picture. I should have left my camera in my pocket. Or in the car.
AG 4/6 (awards only 3 deep though), average pace 9:58. Not bad at all. But I'm not taking a camera during a race anymore. That sub-1-hour would have been very gratifying.
OTOH, it would have raised the dreaded question: What could I do if I trained????