Saturday, September 20, 2008

Run For The Cheetah and Mums

I've been wanting to get in a 5k this month, so last night I decided that I would get up this morning to head to the Cleveland Zoo for the first Run For The Cheetah 5k run and walk. Now, I haven't been to the zoo in probably about 6 or 7 years, but I've been there enough times to remember that there's a fairly good sized hill that I would have to contend with and hills are not my friends! It appears as though running hills really agitates my back issues...but for some reason I just really wanted to do this race. -- I guess it's my way of trying to convince myself that 1) yes I am a runner and 2) my back is fine.

Well of course, when I woke up this morning my back was not feeling great...see, this just goes to show what the sub-conscious can do to you! I talked with both trainer-Steve and G prior to the race and they both basically gave me the same advice, "put the thought of pain in your back OUT of your mind", and to be honest, once I started running my focus changed to finding my place in the pack and who I might try to pace myself with and my back never became an issue during the race -- but I digress... So I got up this morning, talked with trainer-Steve and G and waited around for my Mom to show up, which she did right on time at about 7:30am. My Mom really enjoys coming to the races and it also gets her out of the house a little more and it's really convenient since she gets to hang on to all my crap I bring and all the stuff ya get at races - so, if you ever see me at a race fell free to drop your stuff off with my Mom, she really won't mind, lol.

We got to the zoo at about 7:50am and I got myself registered and we walked around a little, went to the Lion exhibit since they are my favorites (they weren't up yet), and milled around waiting for it to be time to start the race. Finally, time to line up and listen to the few instructions they had to announce. Now, I hadn't really thought much about the course other than I knew I'd have to face a hill. Well what's one of the first things I hear " you'll be running the course twice..." me, to myself: "HUH?, sh*t, that means the hill Twice! Aggghh. Ok, well I'm here, I've paid, I guess I'm going up that hill twice." With that the race was off... Now again it has been a while since I was at the zoo and as we rounded a corner I noticed the incline ahead and thought "ok, there it is, let's go"...and I ran it..."woo hoo, hmmm, that wasn't soo bad, maybe my memory of the hill was off?"...around another corner, and another... "oh crap, HERE's the hill I remembered, hmmm, I don't remember there being two hills, ok, I ran that first one, I can do this one, ok, there's a turn ahead and it'll level off...omg, it's not leveling off, it's not going downhill, it's going UP." Needless to say, I did not run the entire second hill, figured I'd save myself since I knew I'd be coming this way

I was finishing the first lap I hear lots of cheering and yelling and look around and see 2nd place overall runner is finishing the race...nothing like a nice gently reminder of how slow I am, LOL. Made it through the 2nd round of the course and ended up walking both hills (dang it). Had allot of kick left in me by the end of the race and I know it probably looks silly to those who have completed the race many minutes before me to have someone actually try to kick it in at the end of the race, but even though I am slow, it's still MY race. I finished in about 35 1/2 minutes, clock time (race wasn't chip timed, so in my mind I am going to think that I was maybe closer to 34 or 34 1/2 minutes). All-in-all not so bad considering I walked the hills. And if they deem this 1st year for the race a success (which I think they will), I will definitely be back next year!

Once the race was done and the awards handed out, and the raffle drawing was complete my Mom and I walked around the zoo for a little while. Mom couldn't handle the hills so we left out around 11:00. Once I got cleaned up and changed we then headed down to Barberton for its Mum Festival and spent a couple of hours there walking around and enjoying an absolutely beautiful day.

Since my last update:
9/18, Thursday - had some great "venting" time with trainer-Steve but that didn't leave much time for the treadmill, but managed to squeak out 2 1/2 miles.

9/28, Friday - session with trainer-Steve followed by 2.5 miles on the treadmill.

9/29, Saturday - Run For The Cheetah 5k, walk around Barberton at the Mum Festival.

Next race is the Nature's Bin 5k on October 4th!


duchossois said...

That's a tough, hilly course. Congrats, and glad to hear that the back pain wasn't an issue.

Do you think your Mom would be willing to come to some of my races to hold my stuff? ;-)

Graham said...

Frank, thanks for the encouraging words, they are always appreciated!

She probably would...maybe I'll rent her out... lol