Wednesday, June 8, 2016

The Gay 5K Race Report

Last I left I was telling you that I needed luck to run the Gay 5K last Thursday.

Well, I am happy to say that I finished. I didn't break any PRs or anything, but I finished, and considering how much I haven't been training since the 10K I ran back in early May, I'd say that's pretty good.

Of course, I would be remiss if I didn't give credit to friends for helping me get it done.

First of all, I was really tired and I had a headache. It was a bad week at work. I really would just have loved to go home at the end of the day. But, I remember how much fun I had at the race last year, and that I already paid for it, and I wanted the t-shirt and the burger and beer afterward (the latter two were not half as good as I remember last year's being, but that's OK. The t-shirt was really cool). And some friends would be there, in particular Amy F., who has been the best of the best in my running journey and beyond. And I haven't seen her much lately. And she said she would run with me the whole time because she's at the tail end of nursing an injury.

So I went. I'm glad I did, of course.

The smiles say it all: Me, Amy F., Kelly, Julie, and Emily (photo: J. Carocci/Pride Center of WNY)
This time was extra nice because we knew where to park, we knew where to go, and we knew the course – we are now seasoned! There was plenty of time before the race started to get the swag bag (*sigh*, not nearly as swaggy this year, oh well), get the bib pinned on, take stuff back to the car, etc. Even more so because the race ended up starting about 20 minutes late! Apparently a big truck was in the way somewhere along the race route that needed moved before we could start. That turned out to be OK because I ended up having a nice conversation with an acquaintance I don't see often, and got a hug from another acquaintance who was passing by on his way back from the gym!

Some of the Buffalo Gals crew! (I'm way in the back, LOL)

The race finally got going. As usual, I was at the back of the pack, but this time I had Amy F. pacing me and cheering me on. As I'd mentioned, she was recovering from an injury and was given clearance to run 20 minutes of the race at her normal pace; however she opted to run the whole thing at Amy G. pace, a good 2-3 minutes per mile slower. It worked out perfectly for both us. It was a blast, actually – she was a big positive force and really kept me going, updating me on distance run and the pace. We started out fairly fast, probably a little too fast (in the 13's), and gradually the pace slowed. Overall, according to the race results average pace was 15:34, though MapMyRun had me at 14:48. Apples to apples (that is, my app results to my app results), I can't be too disappointed with that, though truth be told I kind of was. Like I said, though, I was very tired that day, hadn't trained consistently, and it was hotter than I am used to again so that slowed me down a bit. I have to build up my heat resistance (again)!

This photo was taken as we were headed down the strip that heads toward the lighthouse at the marina, right along Lake Erie. It sounds nice, doesn't it? Unfortunately, I hate this strip because every time I run it, it feels like torture – maybe due to when I hit it during a given run, maybe because there is no shade, I don't know. It is picturesque, though, not that you can tell here – but at least we look like we are having fun, right? At least Amy F. is.

Definitely a favorite running photo with one of my best friends! (photo: Vincent Lopez/Pride Center of WNY)

The glory of the finish line in this race are the trio of gorgeous drag queens cheering you in, but I don't have any photos of them and couldn't find any to share – but trust me, they were super fabulous.

So that's it, really. It wasn't a great race for me time-wise, but it was great to spend some quality time with a good friend out on the course, and good to know that I can still run three miles if I want to with relatively little trouble. I've been trolling around for another race to sign up for in June, but haven't settled on anything yet. The next one that I'm registered is just one of those goofy bubble run thingys in July – a bunch of the Gals are signed up, so if nothing else it'll be a fun experience and another chance to prove that I can do it. 

I had other thoughts that I was going to share, but I think I'll just leave it here for now and pick up again another day. Lots on the old brain lately! I'll leave you with my latest favorite selfie, taken post-burger and beer at the race, and after a quick application of lipstick. 

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