I did it--I ran 10 miles in under a 14 minute mile pace and avoided the sweeper bus (would take runners to the finish if they could not finish fast enough)!
The weekend started out long. I drove from my office to my brothers house on Friday to be closer to DC for the weekend. The 50 minute drive took 2 hours and 25 minutes. I was exhausted, but excited to see the little people (niece and nephews) and it always lifts my heart that they are so excited to see me!
Saturday, I headed into DC to pick up my race packet and expected long lines at the expo. The only long lines I saw were at the metro to get downtown. Luckily, I was able to bypass most of the lines, and got into DC relatively easily. The bib pickup was easy and quick.
Saturday night, I met Kristen to give her the two bibs from friends of mine who were unable to run the race. It was a brief meeting, as it was late, but she is super sweet and I was glad to meet her after exchanging a lot of emails (and she killed the race!! Awesome job!!).
I laid out my outfit, pinned on my bib and got ready for bed, where I tossed, and turned and woke up about every hour. I was soooo nervous. I woke up at 5 and got ready for the race. I gave myself some time to dink around, eat a bagel and by 6 I was out the door.
I made it to the race about 20 minutes prior to the start, checked my bag and got into the corral. And we waited, waited, and waited some more. I took some pictures, but sadly, my phone met my kitchen sink last night and is dead =( . Finally, we were off and it just was wonderful. DC is probably my favorite place in the WORLD and the race took a wonderful route. I got caught up in all the excitement and started out way too fast (for me) and felt it at the end of a mile. I slowed down to take it easy, and ran into Kristen at about 2.5 miles. I let the speed demon take off, ate a few sport beans and kept plugging away, enjoying the scenery and getting compliments on my socks (neon green and yellow knee highs a la TMB), outfit, and was interviewed on video by two guys on a motorcycle (seriously, I was about 5 miles in--what the heck were they thinking?). Did I mention it was a beautiful day? Clear, sunny and a comfortable temperature.
Around mile 5, my hip started to bug me. Not terribly, but consistent, so I took a second to stretch my legs and try and working it out. After that, I just kept going, with a combination of walking and running, which served me well and the hip well because I noticed it went away at mile 7. The last mile, I tried to push myself hard, even powering up a hill and just going. I crossed the finish line feeling super proud of myself!
I finished the race at about 2:14...my watch stopped working and I thought I was around 2:05 :(, but no matter---I was still under a 14 minute mile and I did finish, which was important. Hey, I even PR'ed (even if it was by default since I had no other 10 miler times). I am super glad I did the race, regardless of how nervous I was and the disappointment I had with my time and recognizing I was not really prepared. I think that with the Broad Street Run in 4 weeks, I have an idea of how I want to train differently, and I really hope to kill my Cherry Blossom time and get under 2 hours on this race!
Congrats to all the speed demons out there who ran super fast. I hope to be as speedy as you guys some day!
Today is a rest day; I even took the day off of work! I am working on stretching; I might taking a light jog and just try to recover. I am hobbling like an old woman right now, but it was so worth it. I loved this race, as hard as it was for me. Its an accomplishment, and it makes me giddy to know I finished! Now, I am super really motivated to get faster and better!!