Sunday, August 29, 2010

A Step in the Right Direction

Things are still slowly and steadily on the up-and-up. I'm okay with that. I finally got up enough nerve last weekend to actually run a race. I went up to Denver on Saturday to do the Erace (that's not a typo, it's a pun) Homelessness 5k in City Park. After my previous and somewhat disasterous attempt at a "race" about a month and half ago, I didn't go in with the highest of expectations--in fact I was trying to not have any expectations--I just wanted to improve upon what I did the time before and get a decent idea of where things stand fitness-wise. Both objectives were accomplished, I got second (Lori Walker soundly trounced all of us--kudos) and got to actually take home prize money for the first time ever. My time was nothing to write home about, although supposedly the course was about 100 meters too long, but that could be one of those self-esteem boosting rumors that runners conjure up when no one runs that fast on a particular day and we all want to comiserate with each other. But according to Andy Rinne's GPS (here we go with this technology business again) the course was 3.2 miles long. It was a fun race on an interesting course, and I would have to say that the highlight was when some random aid station worker guy pitched a cup of water directly into my face at mile 2. I still don't know what that was all about. Maybe I looked like I was falling asleep out there, I'm not really sure. But I'm sure that it was done with the best of intentions.

Adam, Andy, Robby, Ashley, Russ and me at the start line.

Cross country season is in full swing now, and I always get all nostalgic this time of year, not to mention really jealous of all the college and high school runners gearing up for another year of racing. I really miss that stuff. I mean, I kind of get to pretend to be on the Palmer High School team since I'm always with them and everyone asks me if I run for them (I'm almost 25 for crap sakes, do I LOOK like I run for a high school??!!). It's a bit different (nope, it's a LOT different) when you're not stepping up to the line with a team at your back with everyone counting on you and on each other to give it everything and a bit more on that day. It's a totally different mind-set and it's taking some serious getting used to even though I've been working on it for over a year. The whole Every (Wo)Man for Themselves mentality is a bit more mentally taxing I think.

At any rate, there are plenty of XC races to jump into this fall, and next up is the UCCS Rust-Buster down in Monument Valley Park on the 11th of September. Great race to run and great races to watch. After that, I'll probably jump into the Colorado College Invitational then the Boulder Shootout a week after to get ready to race fast (hopefully) at the Tufts 10k in mid-October. Although at the moment I'm having a lot of trouble getting into that race, hopefully it'll work out.

Great job to everyone in all your races this weekend, and keep up the good work!