Of course could not sleep very well but was not nearly as nervous as I was in the spring running the Dam to Dam and Run 4 the Kids. I got up about an hour before the race start and I didn't think I could eat so I just drank a little Gatorade and left the house worried that I might be late if I couldn't find parking. I thought I was surely to be late as I sat in my car stopped by a train as the clock was ticking.
I had wanted to use the restroom at my house and not in a porta potty but was unable and just as I was pulling in downtown there was a blessed row of them all in a straight line with not a soul waiting to use one. I parked a block or so from the finish line and 3 from the start and made a dash to the jons before meeting a fellow runner and making conversation after asking him where we were supposed to go to run. I had looked at a map but was a little turned around downtown and new I was cutting it close on time. He asked about my barefeet and was nice and friendly and mellow and was wanting to show off his gadgets. We made it to the start line 7 minutes before the starting shot rang out. It was rather loud.
One thing I learned is that I should start at the front in these smaller races. I thought that I should start in the middle since the 10 miler and 5k folks all ran together for the first 2 miles but no, I should have gone farther to the front and not have had to weave and look for holes to get through.
The race started with us running towards the Capital building in the distance and we ran up hill (which felt really good) and turned left to head back towards downtown. The sun was bright and warm and no wind to make the morning any chillier.
The roads were clean and I only came across glass once. It was auto window glass and was easy to avoid. I had to jump over some kind of poo but I felt rather gazelle like doing it. I did not watch the ground much at all and felt relaxed and calm. I noticed my breathing was pretty slow compared to those around me.
We looped around to face the capital again and I learned to that I can pull out more than I think I have. I should have really pushed and beat those two girls that were around me the whole time. Its funny in hindsight how we think we could have done better. They get to say that at least they beat the barefoot girl though. hahaha! Next time, next time!
I finished at 25:59 to place 31st overall and 5th in my age group. According to last years results this is far better than I thought I would do. I beat my shod time at a 5k in May by 1 minute 25 seconds so this is a new PR and considering it was done barefoot I am pretty happy with that! My feet feel great with no blisters. The roads were rather rough but it felt more like a morning pick me up than any where close to pain.
I stayed to get the results and cheered for the other runners coming in. It was a quiet crowd and I feel proud to have gotten them cheering and clapping for all the runners and not just the ones they knew. I was not as shy as I felt last night. I felt confident and calm.
One observation was that the woman that came in second in the 10 mile had hair almost as crazy as mine. The difference in body types are so interesting to watch. All shapes and sizes and all ages represented. There were many children and families. Grandparents watching babies while mom and dad ran and kids running with parents too. One baby really made me want another one....... It was a Lovely morning.