Race Recap: RGI River Run 5k

Posted: 06/06/2012 in 5k, Race Recaps
Tags: ,

The K4K RGI River Run 5k took place about 2 weeks ago, I just haven’t gotten around to writing about it yet. Mainly because I just didn’t feel like it, but also because it seemed like every single post was starting to be a race recap and part of me was like “look at me go! Wahoo!” and the other part was all “another race recap, seriously don’t you do anything else?”. Wait – that was the chorus of voices in my head that represents you guys, not me. You guysssss need some nicer representation. I’m just sayin’.

On the surface, this run looks like a pretty harmless little 5k – there are 4 bridge crossings, back-and-forth across the Licking River Bridge then over the Taylor-Southgate Bridge and Purple People Bridge that span the Ohio River. Elevation rolls over a 200-250′ range, mostly as a result of ramping on and off the bridges. However, because people don’t tend to plant trees on bridges, there is almost no shade – just a 2 minute little pocket of it somewhere near mile 1 and another 30 second pocket of it almost to mile 3.

It was over 80-degrees at the 9:30am start, with a “real feel” of the flaming fires of hell 95-degrees due to the humidity. These weather conditions are pretty consistent for this race. I don’t know why, but every freakin’ year, hot & sunny. You can tell I’m a runner by the way the words hot & sunny make me frown. Not even a random cloud in the sky. I can’t say any other run I’ve done more than a few times has been so consistent with weather conditions that are absolutely crappy for my body. Weird. And probably cursed.

So if the conditions are so consistently awful, why do I keep doing it? Because I’m cheap. I get a free entry and it’s chip timed. You shouldn’t pass on a free chip-timed run, right? Or at least that’s what I tell myself every year until I see my final chip time, and then I’m muttering ‘it’s free to skip it too, you ninny!’.

One water stop at around 1.5-6. 

I knew from the get-go that this one was going to be a challenge for me based on the conditions, the fact that I have a bad history with this run, and the fact that I seem to have amnesia as to how bad this route is for me. It NEVER goes well for me, and now I’m thinking that since that’s the expectation I have of it, that’s what I get. I had a strategy to deal with it, as I usually do, and as I usually do, I ended up chucking it into the murky depths below the bridge.

With the heat, I went extra slow for the first mile – which was exactly according to the plan – but still felt like I was struggling and just couldn’t get my breath. I was trying to be good and disciplined, and told some running friends at a party later that I was actually proud that “Mile 1 went exactly like I planned it”. To this, Coach Caroline responded with “It should’ve. Mile 1 was the easiest part!”. I heart Coach Caroline. I know her intentions are good but I still want to trip her. Also, I found myself wanting water before I hit the mile 1 marker. That wasn’t good. I was well hydrated going into the run and usually, I don’t really think about water until I get to mile 3 or 4 when I’m out around town. Hmph.

With the struggling, I gave myself permission to walk for a minute at the Mile 1 marker. From there, all the little pep-talkers in my head went on strike, self-discipline went straight out the window and I basically quit the run. And then I saw the worst part of the run – the one my amnesia blocks out completely – where a downhill part of the run meets the worst uphill part of the run – at a 90-degree angle. I hate it when that happens! Especially, since you can’t really adjust your track in a crowd to swing wide and move continuously. It feels like downhill, downhill, downhill. STOP. Oh-my-f’ing-god-UPHILLLLLLImaydie. And every muscle in your lower back gets cranky simultaneously until they kick your glutes to wake up and pitch in again. When I hit that turn, I know why I can never remember much of the race or the feel of the route – BECAUSE I’VE BLOCKED THE PAIN.

I did do a bit more running on the route – probably more than I’m giving myself credit for – but my ending pace time was the worst time I’ve had since this same run last year. And I shit-talked myself the entire way to the finish line – including a few “i suck at this” and “maybe I just need to not race anymore” statements. I couldn’t poke my happy place with a very long stick from where I was in my head. Sometimes that’s the breaks. I’m just glad it’s over with.

All that being said, I will say this is one impressively organized little 5k! Everything is laid out well and the water station is well manned. They have some serious sponsorship for the goody bag – free appetizer at P.F. Chang’s, free Chick-fil-A sandwich, 3 different bottles of lotion (bigger than sample sizes), a $10 off $50 at the local running store, and a few other things. ANNND, they have First Watch – a local breakfast joint – serve waffles after the run, with a live local band. ANNND Starbucks handing out coffee before the run and cups of ice afterward. ANNND, the bar across the street gives out a coupon for a free hot dog or pretzel and beer or soda immediately after the run! I skipped the waffles, but you know I got my beer & hot dog on with my running buddies afterward! We were all stinky, but the bar had the windows open, so it was okay.

So basically, this one got me again. My bad for not taking it really seriously beforehand again. Note to self – at least go drive this route once before the run so you can remember what you need to do to get it done and plan better.

 

thoughts?

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