NYRR Joe Kleinerman 10k Race Report
|January 10, 2012||Posted by Emily under Uncategorized|
Well, I did that. And while the last time I hung out with these two was pretty fab, with all the cheering and mimosa-ing and sparkling all over the streets of New York, this time was about 1,000,000 times better.
Because this time, not only did I not have a boot, or crutches or a broken bone, but we got to RUN together. And by run, I actually mean RACE, which made the trip another 1,000,000 more spectacular. Actually, add about 10 more zeros to that number, and then we’ll all be on the same page about the level of spectacular.
After a few marathon group g-chat sessions and some reply all gmailing, the three of us decided that the best way to celebrate both Lauren’s engagement and my return to running would be with a race. And by “we decided”, I really mean I decided and then peer pressured the others into registering. (Remember how I said I’m a champ at the whole persuasion thing? Well, it’s not a lie.) I strageically picked the weekend in January when NYRR was hosting the Joe Kleinerman 10k in Central Park and then convinced the other two to play along.
I mean, kidding Ali, you’re a super cook. That store bought hummus and bowl of baby carrots basically qualifies you for a James Beard award.
As is characteristic of every trip we take to NYC, we decided to pass on being tourists or actually experiencing the city so we could hang out in Ali’s studio apartment and give Lauren things that were old, borrowed, blue and new.
I think it’s safe to say that Lauren was ecstatic we congratulated her on her engagement with things she discarded during her last trip to NYC (I still haven’t forgiven her for thinking Mario Lopez’s autograph was worthy of the trash can)
Old cow bells from running relays that were clearly meaningful to her as she proclaimed “oh! This is from Boston!” Wrong, Lauren. Just wrong. And her race bib and shirt, because you know, she wouldn’t have gotten those blue/new things without us wrapping them for her.
And then there was the art work. Forget James Beard, Ali’s true talent clearly lies in the arts. In case you couldn’t tell, that’s Lauren running toward the finish line (or altar, whatever) with Ali and I throwing cheese at her. Also, there’s some gu packets on the aisle, because you can’t have a wedding without proper amounts of running fuel.
We are pretty much the best friends ever.
Best friends that later drop things covered in cheese on the card moments after you receive it.
I mean, that totally didn’t happen.
We spent the rest of Friday night girl talking, eating things with cheese and geeking out about our upcoming race (actually, that was just me, the other two were still glaring at me and cursing every time the issue came up.)
But the next morning, the other two started to get alittlebit more excited about the whole race thing.
I think the veil that we forced Lauren to race in helped escalate the giddy factor.
While Miss Ali was getting ready for the race, the bride-to-be and I snuck away to “get caffeine” aka plot our secret race strategy. (Okay, yes, we also got caffeine, no air quotes, but we ALSO got down with our plotting on the way to and from the ‘bucks.)
We decided that Ali could use a little confidence boost in the pace department. She had spent the majority of the weekend since our arrival wallowing in her mistaken belief that she’s slowed down as a runner and we obviously wanted to slap some sense into her. So we decided that while she was under the impression that we’d be running in the 7:45-8 minute range, we would actually kick it up a notch and hover around 7:30s while running.
We got decked out in Team Watermelon colors, the official racing look of the future Mrs. EC and hit the road to warm up with some of the power walking we’d be employing throughout the day’s race.
Well, turns out the broken-foot-healing girl is an atrocious power walker. Ali and Lauren sped ahead with Olympic speed while I floundered blocks behind, trying desperately to swing my hips while looking more like a dunce in gym class failing at the macarena.
When we got to the race start, Lauren and Ali ran to the porta-potties while I hung out with Kelly and ran into my fellow Ironman Jon in the corrals. Obviously I didn’t want to waste my precious run minutes on a bathroom trip over race time. We all know if the situation gets really dire for me, I’m never going to not pull off to the side of a race course and drop trou to relieve myself.
By the time, the other two made it back to the start, the gun was about ready to go off. Luckily, we had no trouble finding each other in the chaotic and packed corrals.
I’m sure our head to toe neon race outfits had absolutely nothing to do with that.
When the race started, I got a bad case of the stupid grins. Give me a healthy dose of adrenaline, competition and obnoxious race day outfits and I’m going to be in heaven.
After weaving through approximately 2,000 runners, we managed to find some space where we could run comfortably and side by side. You can’t dress up as Team Watermelon/Cheese Bride and then not appear as a unit. Lauren decided she never wants to race without a veil again and Ali decided she wants to start wearing one for every race, and just every day life. No, you did not miss anything, she is not engaged, and Brian is TOTALLY cool with the idea.
I’m pretty sure the hundreds of people who yelled “Congrats!” and “Go bride!” (and one or two “you’re making a mistake!”) assumed Lauren was getting married on Saturday. And we clearly didn’t have the heart to break it to them that the wedding date is still smack dab in the TBD phase. Nor did we really mind the constant calls and cheers. I know our outfits deceive you into thinking we hate attention, but turns out we’re okay with it.
We ran the first 3 miles in just over 23 minutes and then slowed down to a power walk. Lauren and Ali were SUPER thrilled to be walking in the middle of a race. Neither of them said anything offensive to me or called me names or glared or started to run again without me.
But to the haters who thought I couldn’t actually participate in a race without running the whole time and being super competitive (cough cough Ali and Lauren cough cough), I can and I did. I managed to control my inner competitive demons and kept it smart with walk breaks.
After a few minutes of power walking (/hoping that our neon outfits suddenly turned camoflouge so people wouldn’t judge us for walking), we were back at it for another run, and then repeat.
By the end of the race, we ended up running 5.75 miles in a little over 42 minutes for something like a 7:27 running pace. You’re welcome, Ali, turns out you ARE an awesome runner. See you at your Spring Marathon for total domination.
About 10 minutes of walk breaks on top of our running brought us across the finish line in 50:55. Not bad for power walking, especially for a power walking challenged athlete like myself. And Ali and Lauren managed to only ditch me once during my walk breaks but graciously waited for me to finish walking before our final sprint into the finish line. You know how I know they’re true friends? They ran/walked with me. Not many running friends would do that for a girl (myself included…)
The gun at the start, the team watermelon friends at my side, the running, the sea of race bibs, the finish line, holy sweat, I was so happy to be back at the races again.
First race of 2012 on the first full weekend of the year…this comeback is exceeding my expectations. Now I just need to convince these two girls to join me at every single race in a rotating array of flashy attire and bridal accessories. I think we’ve managed to establish ourselves as experts on the matter.
We celebrated the finish of my first (of several) comeback races by popping the bottle of champagne I had saved from the finish line of the Wine Glass Marathon, the site of my beyond-ready-to-be-broken marathon PR. Sayonara 3:27, you are not welcome around these parts anymore.
And then we popped several more bottles of champagne, and wine, and champagne, and wine.
And boxes of brownies…because you pop those too, especially when paired with champagne.
Obviously coming back from a broken foot coupled with an engagement requires A LOT of celebrating. And we totally left Alison’s apartment. To get carbs and cheese and then promptly returned. In our matching race shirts…
because if we learned anything from the 10k, it was that matching=totally cool.
Thanks to two of my favorite running friends for making my first race back in the Sauconys an absolutely unforgettable and sweatastic experience.