(Yeah, I fell behind in my recaps. Sorry.)
So I woke up at 2 AM to phone Dawn and wish her a happy wedding day, only to get Karen (Dawn's sister) instead, who told me she wouldn't be waking Dawn up until 8. I puzzled over this for a few minutes before I finally remembered that Indiana is 5 hours behind Glasgow, not 6. So I turned on the TV, woke up Grandma (oops), and finally phoned Glasgow at just past 3. After a nice conversation with Dawn, I went back to bed.
So when I woke up for real, I came out of bed at a run (almost literally) to get ready for our race. Oatmeal and orange juice were first on the agenda, followed by putting on my warm-weather outfit, going outside, coming back in, putting on the cool-weather outfit, going outside, then coming in and compromising on the cool-weather trousers and both shirts. This turned out to be a good idea later on.
I wasn't running with the iPod, because I didn't know how serious the organisers were about the no-headphones rule (because it is a USATF rule, race organisers are obligated to say it, but thus far most races aren't enforcing it. Thank goodness.). So I had all my running songs on the iPod to get me into pregame in the car. We loaded up in the van, then had to stop at the first grocery store so the family could load up on doughnuts.
We had to take a detour around the racecourse, so we didn't go quite the same direction on Saturday as we did Friday. We pulled up to a light to go to the parking area in time to see a huge pack of runners taking off, and after I started to come down from my panic attack I realised it was the half-marathon start, not the 5K.
So, we got parked, Chad and I set out to walk to the start line, and the family headed for a shuttle bus. This was the family's first race to witness, and I think they had fun with it. We had to stand in the start area for ages before taking off, because the last of the half pack had to clear our course before we could start. However, that was plenty of time for me to decide that it was too warm for my long-sleeved shirt, so I took it off and gave it to Mum. (She hasn't gotten to hold my stuff for a while, so I'm sure she was happy about that. ) I had worn that particular shirt with the idea that it wouldn't be a great loss if I had to take it off and leave it on the side of the road somewhere.
So, the course was hilly, but really nice; people were standing in front of their houses cheering us on the entire way. I had my splits written on my hand, but all the clocks were ticking away the half-marathon time, and I hadn't seen our time as we crossed the start line, so I wrote on my hand for nothing. However, I did manage to keep track of our time between miles, since I had nothing better to do than mental arithmetic while running.
There were lots & lots of kids on this race. I really was delighted to see that, because I think running is a great sport for kids. If nothing else, it is something that can be continued for one's entire life, long after high school letter jackets are shoved to the back of the closet and the only football game you can get is vs. the rest of the family at Thanksgiving. We passed a couple of girls right before the end of mile 2, and one of them was asking, "When is the second mile going to be over?" I giggled and told her, "Really soon," and they both looked surprised (I don't think it occurred to them that someone might be listening), and then the girl who had asked smiled and said, "Thanks!"
So, one mile later, we were crossing the bridge and I could see the crowd at the finish line. I knew by the clock that we had run mile three in around 10 minutes (which was my goal), and then as I rounded the corner, the clock at the finish said 30:18. No kidding. That alone was enough for me to dig really, really deep and sprint the last .1 as if my life depended on it. I shouted to Chad (before running out of breath), "Look at the time!" but he didn't understand me. Just before I crossed the finish line, I heard Dad yelling my name, so I waved.
We got through the finish chute, returned our timing chips, collected our medals, water, and bananas, and met up with the family on the other side. Chad took advantage of the free massage booth, while I headed straight to the results tent. On the way, Dad told me he didn't know my time because the clock had stopped at 30:18. I stopped walking and asked, "Are you serious?" He said yes, so I told him that it was the sight of that time that helped me pour on the speed at the end.
So, here are our official results from our first "big" race:
Chad: 31:44, 24th in his age group, 279th out of 614 men, and 443rd overall.
Susan: 31:47, 18th in my age group, 168th out of 1027 women, and 448th overall. There were 1641 finishers in the race.
After the race, Grandma wanted Denny's, so that's where we went.