I think it's important to start out by stating the following. This was not a race. This was a training run... on a race course... with a bib, a timing chips, and Marine's handing out water. Technically I wasn't out to race. For a few minutes there I forgot that today, but, I remembered now. This was "for fun". The reason I didn't want to race is that I don't want to hurt myself on day 6 of Marathon Training. So, just remind me of that when I start "poor me, I didn't bring my A game" later this week.
Even though it was for FUN, I got a PR. Because I've never raced 17.75K before.
The alarm was set for 4:15, but I did that thing where you're afraid of over sleeping so you wake up an hour early... and then doze for 10 minutes, wake to check the clock... doze for 10 minutes, wake to check the clock... doze... until 4 when I just got up. Threw some last minute stuff in the car (ice towels for the cooler, sandwich), and headed out to pick up T. I pulled up at exactly 4:45am as planned, and she came out the front door.
At this point, I confirmed that of all the things I'd forgotten to throw in the bag or apply, I'd forgotten body glide. uh. Fail. So long story short, I just figured I would make due with something, and we got on the way to Northern VA.
We arrived on time, I finished dressing, and as we sort of milled around the JEEP with me deciding what to use in place of Body Glide, we heard a woman say, "Well, you two do know how to stand out." MCM MAMA joined the fun! So, now we were 3. I finally opted for Neosporin and Baby Powder scented deodorant and applied to the legs. FAIL for not applying it in my bra. TMI?
We did the usual pre-race junk - aka, potties, photo-ops, etc, and lined up to start. Let me say this, the woman who sang Star Spangled Banner had a lovely voice. And... let me also say, that the guy doing the announcing after she was done singing needed to know... you do not need to shout into a microphone. I'm just sayin'. AND, as he's talking, they're playing this DRAMATIC MUSIC behind him. Too funny. Oh the Drama Drama was so loud that we barely heard the start gun. The race got started. It was crowded, yet cheerful. I was dripping sweat by mile .2.
It. is. not. an. easy. race.
The race topography should have been a clue. It went a little like this -^^^^^^^^-/. So. There wasn't a lot of not climbing or descending. In fact, from my point of view as a racer, it was leave the parking lot, run on a boring flat highway and complain about the sun, turn a corner, run up a hill into a State Park, cheer for the shade, run down a hill, run up a hill, run down a hill, lament the loss of the pavement, run up a hill, try not to fall down a hill....
I was doing really well, good spirits, keeping myself entertained, talking quite a bit, an over all pace of just about a 10min/mile, with a pretty decent heart rate. The volunteers (all male Marines) enjoyed our socks. The two men behind me kept calling me Pippy b/c I was wearing what's becoming my signature buns, and with the socks and the Runningskirt, yea, Pippy made sense. They were encouraging & flirty, but not inappropriate and creepy - always a plus. BY THE WAY - calling single female runners... this is the race for YOU. Tons and tons of cute Marines at every turn.
We were having fun, walking the water stops, I never took my GU, I was just doing shots of PowerAid, and since it was working I didn't want to shake it up.... And then, we came around the corner on yet. another. hill. And my spirit broke a little and I thought, "I can't do another one". So MCM Mama and I set TMB loose and walked for a minute up the hill. I realized later when I looked at my HR that I totally could have done another hill. Fully capable. Mentally I just wasn't doing at that point. MCM Mama and I started walking up the hills and running down (flying down one of them!). I finally said, we should just settle into a pace that works, and stop trying to kill ourselves... which, uh, we kinda did alright with... I think the pace I verbalized was a little slow for both of us... and we didn't really run it. Then we came to the _ part of the end of the course and I set myself on cruise control and cruised in with MCM Mama right behind me, up a hill and to the finish. I didn't have much (any) kick at the finish line, but you know, I was just dead beat at that point and glad the race was OVER.
I finished 700th over all, in 1:52:06. The goal at some point was to finish "sub 2", because I knew there was no way we were going to hit 1:40ish once the forecast was calling for freakishly hell like temperatures with high humidity. So that goal was accomplished. Other goals included "Having Fun", "Not Breaking An Ankle", "Not Falling on my A**", and "Not chafing the legs", all of which were totally achieved.
I would do that race again if TMB & Erika & anyone else* wanted to run it next year. It was fun - for a hot, hilly, training run. *you know who you are.
SO, since you're all DYING to know! The verdict on Neosporin & Secret? It's a good sub for body glide in a pinch. First applied the secret, then the ointment over top in a super thin layer.