So today was the Watermelon Run! I had gotten the dates mixed up, it was today not Saturday. Oops. LOL I can be so dingy. Downside of it being today vs. Saturday is I went out with my friends last night so only got about 4 hours of sleep. But I tell you I was still pumped to get up and run. I had my clothes laid out and my soundtrack ready! So I got there a little early and was surprised that there were still t-shirts available for race day registration. The course was 2 laps around the school grounds of Upper Lake High School. Proceeds from the race went towards ULHS cross country. Since it was for the HS there were lots of teenagers there. Typically there aren't many HS students at races like this. It was refreshing to see so many young people taking part of an event that wasn't a school one.
The City Fitness crew was out in force today and it was nice to see them. I always feel bad as I no longer go to CF gym but I have to do me, ya know? I was very careful not to start out too fast this time. That's one of the pluses about having a watch that tells you how fast you're going. So I ran for about 3/4's of a mile keeping at 14:50 pace, then walked for about a half mile. One of the downsides of this course is that it was partially in a field that has been kept watered. So there were a lot of gopher holes and that part the ground was quite soft. I'm used to running on firmer ground so my legs were feeling funky. Actually, my left foot fell asleep which was so weird. I kept behind another woman in my age group who, I could tell, didn't want me passing her and her mom. I did the first mile in 17 mins. I let the other woman and her mom go ahead of me. I figured I'd catch up later, I had a feeling that she wasn't at a pace she could sustain. That's kind of the downfall that I saw at my half marathon: if you're a bigger girl (especially one as big as me) no one wants you to pass them. It's insulting I suppose. Even if you're not even going to place, they still don't want to be passed by the fat girl. Whatever, we were going about the same pace anyway but I like to kick it into high gear at the end. For quite a bit of the course, anyway, it was hard to pass.
On the second lap, I did pass her during one of the wider parts only to have her practically run me over to get ahead again. I was going a little faster then, and finished my 2nd mile at 16mins. So the last mile is always the hardest for me, and that dreaded point one as well, ha. But I did end up passing her and her mom again and getting far enough ahead that she couldn't catch up. I came across another group: 2 women in my same age group and an older lady. Yet and again they didn't want me to pass them and actively blocked me from doing so. The thing is the women in my age group (you can tell by the color stickers on your bib) were fit and I knew they were staying with the older lady they were running with. They could have EASILY out paced me. At this point my patience had run pretty thin knowing I had less than half a mile to go. So we get to a wider point and I passed all three. I heard one of the ladies behind me complain that "the fat girl" was "beating them". I made sure to maintain my speed and ran into the finish line. Now, unfortunately I forgot to stop my watch so it shows a 53+ minute finish. I believe I finished in 51 and change, though. If they post the results online I'll know for sure.
It was my worst time for a 5k to date, and that's even the ones where I've ran with a stroller. However I keep reminding myself that I have only been run/ walking for a few weeks. My first 5k I trained for several months. I am happy to know that I can complete one! It's exciting. I don't think it will be long before I'm back to my old self. As long as I don't have any flare ups. And see, that's the thing: I compete against myself. Sure it feels wonderful when you place but it feels better when you beat your last time. It's one of the less talked about things, people get competitive at these races! I remember during my half, there was one lady I was trailing behind who got absolutely livid when I passed her. We did the whole I'm going to pass you, no I'm going to pass you thing. She ended up finishing before me but I had a better time because she started in the group before me. What is it with people? The whole point is to have fun and be fit. Especially in the larger races you're probably not going to place so just do your best. Finishing felt good today. I am so happy that I was able to do so. It gives me hope that I can continue to run and do well. I'm considering training for a half marathon in November. It's called the Almond Bowl in Chico. I'm still scared to commit to anything just because I never know what's going to happen with my body but it might be just what I need.