Saturday, October 6, 2012

Race Report: Georgia Race for Autism 10K

Considering how relaxed I was in the days leading up to the triathlon, it surprised me how nervous I was about today's 10K. The shin issue has been worrying me, as well as the extreme fatigue I'd been feeling since the tri, but I seriously didn't sleep a wink last night! I tossed and turned and tossed and turned. Finally I gave up and got out of bed. Did my rolling and stretching and ate a half a granola bar, then got dressed. I do have to admit that it's nice to local races for a change. The race started at 8:00 and I left my house at 7:00. I could have left at 7:30 and still made it in plenty of time, though.

This was the first year in awhile that I haven't volunteered on the Friday evening before the race. So I had to do packet pick-up, which was actually a breeze. The color of the shirt this year is very nice. We also got a drawstring backpack that contained our goodies, including a water bottle.

I had a lot of time to kill since I'd already done my body looseners at home - and if you've ever read Chi Running or seen the body looseners done, you understand why! LOL I went to the bathroom - no line! And then I did my 5 minute warm-up walk. It seemed to me that there weren't as many participants this year, and judging by the final results, I was right. Not sure why that is. Maybe because there is a half-marathon in Atlanta tomorrow?

I tried to get a self-portrait of my flower from Fellow Flowers but it didn't work very well. My friend, Jill, sent me this flower and suggested that I wear it today, so I did. My pink flower represents "This is so much bigger than me." - which it is. And which is really the only reason I got out of bed this morning to go to the race while I was still so nervous. Today I was wearing my Puzzle Piece SparkleSkirt and my Pink flower while I run for kids, like mine, with autism.
The race itself went pretty well. I did 4/1 intervals and went out much faster than I had wanted. I was able to reign it in, though, and ended up finishing at a nice pace. I also followed my intervals much better than I have done in previous races. My shin only twinged now and then. My right hip was feeling very tight but it felt better after I did some stretching.

My favorite part of the race was the water stop around mile 4.5. A young man with autism was handing out water. He would get so excited after you took the water from him! It made me so happy to see him actively participating in a real and meaningful way in the community! The fact that he got such joy from this was even better

I enjoyed the last part of the race better than the first part, probably because the nerves were gone and I was confident that I was going to be able to finish. I crossed the finish line, took a banana and a bottled water, and did my cool-down walk.

Here is what has become my traditional post-race self-portrait! I'm getting much better at these! I was so pleased to have completed my first 10K race of 2012! :) 

And here is the traditional race shirt picture! :) I know you've been waiting all day to see it! LOL 
Since I felt so good during the race, when I came home, I promptly registered for a 13K race on the weekend before Halloween! :D I am a little nervous about the time limit (12:30) because there is a supermassive hill that I can't run up or down (I know because this is at the park where I have done my long runs for YEARS and I've tried that hill before and it was a big mistake LOL). But I figure if I don't make the cut-off, it's not the end of the world. I'll just keep going... I'm at the park so it's not like they can pick me up in bus or something, or deny me a finishers' medal (since there isn't one). I think it will be fun, and I've been planning to go up to 8 miles for November anyway. :D

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