What? You didn’t think I would let a couple weeks go by without doing another race, right?
Last Saturday morning, bright and early with 71% humidity, was the 4th annual Boomer’s Cystic Fibrosis Run to Breathe 4 mile run. Named for Boomer Eslason, an NLF Hall of Famer, this race originally started out as a 10k but has since been shortened so that more individuals with CF could participate. Katharine’s friend from college died from CF so I was doing this race with him in mind. I had only met him a handful of times, but even one time was enough to know that he was someone special and one of the most hilarious people out there. So here’s to you, Ian.
(Kath and Ian circa 2005.)
The race was in Central Park (like the last few) and so I was very familiar with the course. No sweat. It was a beautiful morning (even with all that humidity) and every good weekend should start with a run. I went down my usual checklist as I was walking to the park:
– Nike+ watch? On my wrist and linking sensors
– Phone? Strapped to my arm
– Earbuds? No, totally forgot about them
– Runner number 6651 (formerly known as runner 4929)? Right next to me
– Race bib? 3654 was proudly sprawled across my shirt
– Vivobarefoot sneakers? Absolutely
Ok so far I was doing much better than the previous race!
6651 and I were in separate corrals and so, having already decided that whoever was in the faster one wouldn’t slink back so that we could start together, we walked for as long as we could together before heading to our respective starting places. The course was pretty much the same as the last couple races I’ve done. It started on the east side just south of the Cat Hill, went counterclockwise up to and through the 102nd street transverse, down the west side, and to71st Street and ended near the bandshell.
Ok – so we started and headed up to the Cat Hill. My pace was good but I knew I wouldn’t be shattering any records that day, which was fine because I knew that 6651 would be. As long as one of us had a record breaking day then it would be all good!
The humidity was pretty brutal but I chugged along, sweating out the vegan pizza and wings I had the night before. (Vegan or not, if you’re ever in Long Island make it a point to stop by 3 Brothers Pizza. I promise it will be worth it.) Miles one and two went off without a hitch. Just a little girl and the pavement – one of the most freeing feelings out there. My legs started to feel a little tired around mile 2.5 for some reason, but I pushed it out of my mind and was fine by mile three – just in time to sprint the last mile!!
I turned onto the 72nd Street transverse and looked up ahead to see the finish line. I love to see that thing in the distance. I’ve run a ton of races, all different lengths, and the first sight of the finish line looming up ahead is like magic. I hope it always feels like that. I got one last bit of adrenaline (which happens every time, whether I run a 5k or a half marathon) and really picked up my speed. According to my trusty Nike+ watch I crossed the finish line in 32:48 – an 8:05 pace. I grabbed some water, wiped away the sweat that was dripping off of me, and searched for 6651, who did great – records were shattered! We rewarded ourselves with a NYRR plum and headed home to register for some more races!
In other news – today was the second Team in Training open water swim, but you’ll have to wait a day or two to hear about how that went! At least you know that I didn’t drown in the mighty Atlantic. And tomorrow is TWO WEEKS until the triathlon. How is that even possible?!