Last night was a pretty laid-back meeting of the Secret Society. (I added a “Secret Society” tag over there in the tag cloud in the sidebar if you want to check out the previous meetings, which were more fabulous and mystical than last night.) We still observed the rituals, however. The theme was “spring”.
And don’t worry Mom, it is NOT a cult.
While I did not drink any kool-aid alcohol, I still had a great time with all my fellow Inner Sanctum acolytes. I did load up on some carbs, however, since this morning I ran the Iron Girl 5K in Clearwater!
My friend Tanya picked me up at 5 a.m. (yawn). She had a friend visiting from out of town, Susie, who was also running with us. The three of us picked up my friend Kathy on the way also. Tanya, Kathy and I may be remembered from our sensational girls shopping extravaganza back in December.
Kathy snapped this photo of me with my pre-race fuel which I consumed in the car on the drive to Clearwater. I am totally bug-eyed in all the flash photos because I horribly anticipate the flash. But it was still totally dark outside, so the flash was unfortunately necessary.
We got those Iron Girl power bars in our swag bags for the race. Mine was cranberry/strawberry and it was pretty good. Kathy got a chocolate variety and would have preferred fruit…we should have switched! Oh well. I also went the Starbucks doubleshot route to get my caffeine with as little additional liquid as possible. I hate porta-potties!!!!
Here we are in the parking lot in our BRIGHT iRunMommies uniforms. Please excuse my crazy eyes. How do Kathy and Tanya look so normal? It was lots of fun seeing other Moms in the uniforms throughout the event (some of the people we knew, some we didn’t, but it was still always fun).
I love the motto:
We made it to the remote parking lot in time and snagged a great parking space. However, the line for the shuttle trolleys was ridiculously long.
I am sure there were people who did not make it to the start in time, even though they arrived in what should have been plenty of time. The shuttle bus system was not adequate for the task. Luckily we made it on a trolley in plenty of time. Here are Kathy and me on the trolley:
It was still pretty dark outside when we arrived at the start site, which was right next to the beach.
We also arrived at the start site in time to hit up a REAL bathroom before the race. Score! Did I mention that I hate porta-potties? There was an incident of blatant line-cutting by a half-marathoner and it did NOT go over well. Also, there were obviously non-runners in line for the bathroom, which I thought was so lame. Again, I know there were people who did not make the start (especially for the half) because of the bathroom lines. I think the race organizers for this event did not do the greatest job. But my girls and I had a fine time.
Here are Kathy and me at the starting line, about a minute before the gun:
We were psyched and ready to go. This was Kathy’s first 5K event, so she was really nervous and excited. The field was great…all women. Love that. Then we were off!
It was of course super congested at the start, and really the entire course was very congested. It never really opened up much at all. The course was very narrow (like one-lane when we were on the road, and lots of just sidewalk running). I tried to keep up with Tanya and Susie for about the first half mile, but the crowd made it really hard and they are just way faster than me. So then I just tried to do my best and enjoy Lady Gaga and not run into anybody.
As we approached the bridge the sun was rising and it was really beautiful. I held my camera up and shot photos while I was running. I came very close to falling flat on my face and taking a few runners down with me, but somehow managed to avoid it.
Coming up to the last mile marker a lady we had been talking to in the bathroom line came by me and tapped me on the shoulder and waved. I decided to use her as my pacer since she was passing me, and I stuck behind her until the finish line.
Here are Tanya and me at the finish. Our medals matched our outfits!
I was really happy with my official time.
And it almost exactly matched what my Garmin said. Here are the splits:
With an average pace of 10:52, that is definitely the fastest three miles I have ever run. I am especially happy since I was worried about having missed my run on Friday, but obviously it was not a big deal.
The food line was just as long as the trolley and bathroom lines, so we decided just to skip it. And despite some more mismanagement regarding the return shuttle buses, we did make it back to our car and back to St. Pete. I really enjoyed doing this event with Tanya, Kathy and Susie. Okay girls, when’s the next one?