The human body and running make no sense at all, because today should not have been a good race for me. I will be straight up, I was hungover, but in my defense we attended a very intense HOA meeting last night. (Side note: If you are house hunting, don't buy within an HOA like, ever). I mean literally, two dudes got into this tense back and forth about parking on the street, and I was getting nudged sharply by my husband for showing him the Michael Jackson eating popcorn meme in response. But seriously, it was one of those deals where you feel all hot and embarrassed for the two parties involved. Luckily that died down, but then there was a lot of conversation about all the craziness going down on the street, safety concerns, etc. It was actually one of the more productive HOA meetings we've had in the 10 or so years I've lived here, we voted on a lot of stuff, and we were all unanimous on the votes. It was nice to talk about stuff that matters instead of people bitching about this one or that one not watering their grass.
My point being that when all of that was done, Eric and I got the hell out of there and had beers immediately to combat the crazy. I didn't drink much water afterwards, so I woke up feeling like hell today. I slept probably about 6 and a half hours last night, so waking up this morning was not pretty. I was so close to just skipping the race altogether because I felt so crappy, but we had a little coffee, got ourselves together and got over there.
So the race I did today was the 5 mile race of the Double Five Challenge in Lake Oswego (there was also a 5k, or you could do both races, ie the Double Five). I absolutely love, love, loved this race. I told Eric afterwards that I almost didn't want to tell anyone about it because it was such a great experience, so I don't want it to get blown out. ;) I think I mentioned this before, but it was held at a park that has special significance for me since Eric got engaged there, we spent many happy hours there with my two late dogs Wicket and Natasha, and we also spread Wicket's ashes there after she died. It's a really wonderful place, and I was excited to be able to do a race there.
Doing a small race after the atrocity of the Shamrock Run last month was seriously a treat. Y'all know how angry I was after that race, it was so crowded and insane, and in my opinion poorly run. Anyway this race had 56 runners compared to the 35,000 at the Shamrock. We were cracking up as we lined up at the start line, and the dude next to me actually brought up the Shamrock and called it a "shit show", which just about sums it up. I was seriously excited, I had so much room on the course that I could have done a Bob Fosse routine. Seriously, this was my view almost the entire course. It felt like it was my own personal race since I rarely saw other runners! Thankfully the volunteers did a great job of marking the course and directing everyone, so I never worried about getting lost. I was just able to run along and enjoy the scenery.
The course began next to the Willamette River and then wound through a residential area. Lake Oswego is quite affluent, so the homes in these neighborhoods are gorgeous. Definitely pretty scenery and tons to look at the whole time, and it made the race go by so fast.
The most shocking thing was how great I felt. I barely walked the entire race, my lungs felt great, legs had plenty of snap in them, no leg cramps and I didn't get any side stitches. I was like, is this for real right now? I haven't run in literally like a month, hungover as all get out, but yet I'm having an amazing race. It was also the best I've felt about myself emotionally in 3 weeks. At about mile 4 I was asking myself, why the hell haven't I been on a run lately? I mean seriously, I was on Cloud 9 compared to the last couple of weeks, and to prove it I took an action selfie where I look happy to the point of insanity. ;) (Also yes, I wore my Motley Crue shirt and enjoyed the scandalized looks a group of snooty ladies gave me when they saw it.) Anyway I need to remember that when I feel the worst is when I need to go for a run the most!
I also wanted to backtrack a little and talk about the participants and the volunteers in the race. All of the volunteers were SO nice and helpful, it was seriously a pleasure to run this race because of them. I was also really surprised by how supportive all the participants were with one another. Every single person who passed me (I'm assuming the ones doing the Double Five challenge) said "good job", "way to go" or some other such encouragement, even the fast tiny shorts people. Usually the fast people are so tunnel vision they never say anything to anyone, but everyone on this course was so friendly to each other. The small community feel of the race was really wonderful, and it felt like such a supportive environment!
I did have to stop so I could get a picture of this bridge. On the left there is where Eric proposed to me. :)
Another great thing about this race was that it was so small, they literally sent me an email with my results about 5 minutes after I finished! Good thing too since I forgot my Garmin! I finished in 1:04:02, which really is pretty good considering that I took so much time off of running.
Afterwards I was starving because I hadn't eaten breakfast, and thankfully a French bakery I really love was just about a quarter mile away! We sat and had a nice little brunch: quiche, salad and really amazing coffee! All in all, it was a wonderful day and I can't wait to do this race again next year! I was so impressed with how organized the race was, so I am definitely going to look into some other races this organization does!