This past Saturday, my husband I participated with some friends in the Spooky Tails 5k Run and 1 Mile Walk to benefit the Wags and Whiskers Animal Rescue. The best part? Sophie Jean in her Butterfly Costume!
It was one way for me to appreciate Halloween. Many of the dogs were dressed up in such cute costumes! It totally distracted me from being nervous about the race.
The Week of the Race…
I normally run about three times per week, making sure that they are not consecutive days. The week of a race, I take the two days before as rest days. I haven’t been very good, as of late, about working out on other days and this week, I just wasn’t feeling it. It may have been the cold, dreary weather that was starting to depress me.
But I only got in ONE run day (or day of any kind of exercise) in the entire week. DOH!
The Night Before…
I had a girls’ dinner night out scheduled with my friends Kim and Jen. I was looking forward to dining again at Santorini Taverna despite that I was just dead tired from the workweek. I kept it to just one Sangria. I was happy that this blog helped me remember that I loved it here so that I didn’t waste my one drink and calories on something that wasn’t worth it. Despite the fact that I had planned on ordering the Shrimp Mikrolimano dish that I had ordered and adored on our last visit, I decided to try the Iberian Pizza that was highly recommended by my friend Jen’s co-worker who had joined us and dines there often. Let’s just say that they make great pizzas at Santorini! Jen had the Mediterranean Pizza which I liked even more.
I got home at a decent time with a half of a pizza in hand with which to feed my husband. I took my night-before-race shower and lathered myself with lavender oil. What am I going to do when I run out of this stuff? They don’t make it anymore! My husband will be oh-so-happy, though, once the “stinky stuff” is gone.
The unique thing about this race is that it didn’t start until 10am. For a day that had a high of 42 degrees predicted, this made me happy! The schedule included:
- 9am – Vendor Fair, Raffle and Silent Auction sign up
- 10am – 5k Run
- 11am – 1 Mile Walk
Despite this, I still woke up at 6am. Ugh. My breakfast did not consist of my usual banana and whole wheat toast with peanut butter because I didn’t have those items on hand. Instead I whipped up the following:
Not pictured: Water (of course) and the Americano I stopped to pick up at Caribou Coffee. If anything, it kept me warm while waiting for the race to start!
Our plan was that I was going to do the 5k Run and Rob would do the 1 Mile Walk with Sophie. We knew that Sophie wasn’t in shape to run a 5k. Upon arrival, we met up with our friend Steve with his beagles. He was signed up for the 5k Run with his wife, Terri, but she ended up sick and couldn’t make it.
After looking at the route, which looped around a couple of times, Rob decided that instead of waiting until AFTER the 5k Run to do the 1 Mile Walk with Sophie, that he would take Terri’s place in the 5k, but only go as far as Sophie could handle.
We checked out the vendors, entered the raffle and signed up for some silent auction items. Then I realized that we would have to ditch our bag in the car and I would have to shed a few layers since Rob was going to be doing the 5k at the same time and wouldn’t be able to be my usual, dutiful assistant. About ten minutes before the race started, I decided to shed those layers and realized I had to go to the bathroom. I looked everywhere for the bathroom and finally spotted a Porta Potty across the parking lot.
There was only one!
And I was waiting in line for it. I finally reached the starting line with about a minute to spare, handed off the car keys to Rob and started to pull on my iPhone armband and put my earbuds in when the horn blared.
This was the first year that the course was timed – not chip timed, but there was a clock. It was a small race. So I crossed the start line about 5 seconds after the clock started.
The route wasn’t really a route. While we did follow a couple of paved paths and were running on the park driveway and the parking lot later on, much of the run was just running through the leaves and grass around the baseball fields. Rob said it reminded him of football practice in high school. You really had to watch where you were going! As usual, I was afraid of tripping. After one of the loops, I saw Sophie and Rob, so I ditched my scarf and gloves that had started to make me too hot.
The course did not have mile markers. And while there were volunteers there to point us in the right direction, who knew if we cut corners that we shouldn’t have. I just followed the people in front of me. When I got close to the end of the course, I saw Sophie and Rob waiting for me, so I waved and yelled, “Sophie Jean!”
Then I saw the clock…
And I ended up with a PR!
Post-Race and Reflection…
At the goodies table, there were not only people treats, but doggie treats as well. These homemade treats were made by Wags and Whiskers Volunteers. Both Benny and Sophie loved them!
At 10:50, the raffle began and the silent auction winners were announced. (We had to be present to win both.) I ended up winning some Ordway tickets! However, I hadn’t brought cash nor my checkbook with me. I’m hoping to get them a check this week so that they know I made good on my word. I always want to support an animal rescue cause!
We didn’t stick around for the 1 Mile Walk, so I have no idea if it started on time or what that was like.
And of course, I’m very happy with my PR! After only having run once during the week and a slow previous 5-mile race, I wasn’t expecting much. While running, I didn’t feel like it was the best of runs. But I’m not complaining!
Comparing this race to my last PR , I’ve come to the following fun conclusions:
- I now have a lucky shirt. I’ve worn the same shirt at this race as I did at my last PR race.
- I must eat Mediterranean food the night before a race. I ate at Greek restaurants each time.
- I must not wear my heart rate monitor. Last time I PR’d, my HRM wasn’t working. This time, I couldn’t find the piece that reads the heart rate. I think just running by how I feel rather than looking at my heart rate is a much more intuitive way to run a race!
Here is a list of my 5k race results for my own personal comparison:
- The Event: Spooky Tails 5k Run & 1 mile Walk for Wags & Whiskers Animal Rescue
- The Location: Alimagnet Dog Park, Burnsville, MN
- The Date: October 27, 2012 – 10am
- Night Before Dinner: Iberian Pizza at Santorini Taverna
- Pre-race Breakfast: Two scrambled eggs with chopped marinated mozzarella on toasted sesame Ezekiel bread
- My Time: 35:35 (PR!)
The Weather: Chilly. 38 degrees at race start.
- Attire: Cuddleduds long sleeve shirt under “lucky” t-shirt, black Danskins leggings, fleece scarf and gloves that I ditched halfway through the race
- General Feeling: “Look at all of these cute Pupper Dawgs!”
- Uniqueness: Supporting something that matters to me – dog rescue
- Size: Of the 66 people finishing the 5k Run, I came in 60th. Whew!
- The Goods: Spooky Tails t-shirt, goodie bag with coupons and such
- The Grub: Vitamin Water, Granola Bars, bananas, apples, grapes, bagels with cream cheese, homemade doggie biscuits!
What causes do you like to support?