Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Three Sisters 5k Race Report

It's mid-June and life in Oregon is good. It's been a very busy and exciting month so far! On June 1st a couple of my best friends flew into Portland for a few days to hang out and celebrate my baby shower with me. Alisa threw a beautiful shower on Saturday the 2nd- all our friends, beautiful decorations, yummy food! We spent the entire next week on vacation in Central Oregon where we did a lot of hiking, walking, and even trail running... but also a lot of relaxing. Now we are home and back to reality. The clock is ticking towards our little girl's due date and there is still much to do!

I have so many pictures of all the festivities and adventures and friends- I'll try to pick a few to post. But before I get to that, I have a race report to share!

I discovered about a week before our trip that there would be a race held right at the resort where our condo is! It's the Three Sisters Marathon- a small, second-annual event that had a marathon, a marathon relay, and sure enough... a 5k. Score! The start/finish area was just across the golf course from our condo- I've never been so close to the start of a race. As we walked and ran around all week I kept seeing the course markings. How could I not run it?! Also, looking at last year's results (the first year of the race), there were only 47 5k runners and only 2 in my age group. I figured I had an AG place locked in!

I was going to register the morning of the race, but ended up signing up at the Fleet Feet store in Bend the day before since we were nearby. This meant I could sleep in as late as possible and leave the condo about 10 minutes before the gun went off (avoiding any restroom wait). Zach decided not to run so that he could get pictures. We walked over to the start together and got there with a couple minutes to spare. There were like 20 people! Official results show 49 finishers, which feels like 20.

My goal was obviously just to finish and have fun. My runs lately have been in the 12:00+ range generally, with lots of walk breaks. I ran a 5k a few months back, at 23 weeks pregnant (I was 34 weeks on race day this time) and finished with around 10:00 pace. But that was a different era altogether. This time I was hoping that I could run the whole thing, keeping an 11:00-12:00 pace, and avoid any walking. But given how often I get cramping on my runs lately (side stitches and minor contractions) I knew that was a long shot. Of course I knew it didn't matter what my finish time was, but I am competitive and goal-oriented no matter what the context. Zach even suggested I run without my Garmin and I scoffed at him. It's still a RACE buddy. It's ON. These 20 children and grandparents were going down!!

After some hit-or-miss weather all week we were treated to a super clear, sunny morning. It was cool, like upper 40's, but not bad. I gave Zach his jacket and lined up and we were off at 8:00 sharp!

I kind of ran with a chatty couple of ladies and a 7 year old girl for the first mile. Her dad was running with her, kind of scolding her for being slow before telling her "I'm going to run ahead, now don't slow down!" What a creep! I finally passed her, but then caught up to a little boy around her same age with the typical kid sprint/walk pace strategy. He was pretty fun and actually kept right around me the rest of the race. The course was a little loop and a little out and back so I saw Zach a few times. First about at mile 1 and then again at mile 2 (plus start and finish). He asked me how I was feeling and I was happy to say "great!" I didn't have any cramping and was keeping a good pace. Mile 1 came in at 10:45 and mile 2 was 10:58. I was surprised! I got to see the leaders and counted about 6 women ahead of me. (the leader ended up rolling her ankle making the last turn and had to drop out).

In the last mile I encouraged the little sprint/walk boy quite a bit- he was struggling and questioned aloud the accuracy of the course. ("My dad said three miles but this seems a lot longer!") I told him his dad was right but we were nearly done, only 1/2 mile to go! He got off course a couple times so I helped him out. It was really cute. I thanked the one volunteer directing people at the junction of all the loops/out-and-backs as I went by the last time, and thanked the 4 people cheering at the next junction (the only spectators of the day). I was still feeling great and didn't have any side cramps or anything! Mile 3 was 10:06, and then I kicked a bit in the last stretch- my garmin showed the last .13 miles at an 8:30 pace. Weee! My little buddy finished just ahead of me, and then it was my big finish. They even called my name! :)

It was really a super fun race. I felt great- I was able to push kind of hard but had no discomfort at all. That last 5k in March I felt weird about participating in a race at my current speed, but this time I owned it.

Official race results:

33:00 (10:38 pace)

2/8 30-34 AG

6/36 Females

17/49 Overall

I waited around for a while hoping for a big awards ceremony, but this no-frills race skipped that part. Bummer- I really wanted a ribbon or something for my baby. Oh well. Zach and I walked back to the condo and made a big bacon and eggs breakfast and spent the rest of the morning at the pool. I know it's silly, but I really was basking in my post-race high for quite a while! It was so fun and I was really happy with how I did.

The results are hilarious. There really were several children and in fact the 2nd place finisher was probably about 9 years old. The first place woman (after the race leader's injury) finished in 26 minutes. The male winner was pretty fast, but Zach and I both decided we should try to schedule our vacation around this same time next year so we can sweep the field. Cherry pickers! I actually would be interested to hear how the marathon went- it's a really gorgeous area and seemed well-organized, so it might be worth doing. Not sure how flat the course is (start/finish is around 3000 feet), and it gets pretty windy out there, but it could be a fun marathon. I might have to check the age group results...

Race Pictures!

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A few pictures from the rest of our gorgeous vacation in Central Oregon:

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And finally, a few from the beautiful baby shower the previous weekend. So much love!

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Thanks for reading!!

5 comments:

Lauren @ Sassy Molassy said...

Awesome that you're still running, Jen! And love the pic with Zach slugging back the beer as you're looking at one of your baby shower presents. You're looking great!

Diana said...

You can't help be get all happy when you see your pictures!!! Looks like you are having a wonderful time. Loved your baby shower dress too. The best is yet to come. Being a mom is hard but amazing.

Carolina John said...

Wow, that's really great! Pulling 2nd place ag at 34 weeks preggers? Rock on with your bad self. Great pics!

Ewen said...

Good report Jen. Love your competitive attitude: "It's still a RACE buddy. It's ON." Yep, cherry pick that 5k next year - you'd win and I'm sure Zach would place top 3 (even pushing the stroller).

Arcane said...

It's been a while since I visited. Congrats on the race and the baby! You'll be a great mom!