This was a very small event in my hometown so I told BIL we didn't need to get there too early - he picked me up at my house at 8:30 and we were there by 8:35 (told ya we were close!). We picked up our packets and numbers and had about 20 extra minutes to kill. The weather was in the low 50s but the rain held off (thankfully) until after the race was over.
The packets!!! Holy crap I have never seen such an awesome packet. In addition to the race shirt (which is a tech shirt, BTW, and they were an awesome blue color this year!), we got a $5 Huey's gift card, a 20% off coupon to Yogurt Mountain, a voucher for a free visit to ATC Fitness, a coupon for $1 off at Smoothie King, a packet of Chips Ahoy cookies, an Aveeno oatmeal bath, and a variety of pens and pencils. I mean, DANG! Hats off to these guys for an awesome race packet!
After a prayer and the national anthem we were off! I think there were around 100 runners registered for this race and I can tell you not nearly that many people showed up race day so it wasn't congested at all. We started off towards Arlington's Town Square and I've run these streets before so I was very familiar with the route we were taking. BIL and I made a friendly bet on Friday that the person to cross the finish line last would buy breakfast after the race - so while I let him get a little ahead of me at the beginning, I had my eyes on him the whole time because I didn't want to start out too fast. By the time my watch buzzed at the 1 mile marker I had caught up to him and I glanced down at our time - a sub 10:00 min mile!!! WHAT???!!! Surely this watch is broken because I don't run that fast.
I stuck with the BIL and we were both doing great and feeling great, I was surprised we were able to keep up conversation but we did. We made the right on to Chester and begin the slow uphill towards the park. I had made the last minute decision to not take my water bottle with me so I was glad to see a water stop about halfway in b/c I needed a little sip since my allergies are runnin' a muck right now. After taking a few sips I was back at it and the LARGE hill near the park was approaching. We started our ascent and after a few strides in I told the BIL I was gonna walk it - I didn't want to push it when I knew I still had another mile left and I eventually needed to get ahead of him so I could win my breakfast bet, so I let him run it and I walked it. Wouldn't ya know, not far past the top of the hill I caught back up to him - and PASSED him around the 2 mile marker. A 10:06 min/mile that one was. Again, I'm thinking my watch is surely broken.
This was around the time I really felt my groove coming on and I bolted up the last small hill and from there on it was all downhill back towards the finish line. I was feeling GREAT and passing several people. We made the last final turn onto Douglas Street back towards the school and the ROTC volunteers were cheering for everyone - I made sure to thank them for all their hard work! I see the finish line up ahead and I KNOW at this point I've scored a PR and breakfast when all of a sudden, there he is - my BIL. That joker had let me get about 20 yards ahead of him and then he started SPRINTING towards the finish to catch me.
Uh uh buddy, not this time! When I heard him come up beside me I took off myself and to the cheers of the crowd we sprinted towards the finish line - and TIED. 28:44 was our official finish time.
DAAAAMMMNNN girl! 28:44???!!! Who is this fast chick? That was a 9:16 min/mile for those of you doing the math and for the record I have NEVER EVER EVER run that fast before. I don't know if it was the cooler temps or the fear of having to buy the BIL breakfast but this was an awesome run!!!
Final thoughts: I would do this race again in a heartbeat. The location is the big draw for me - it's 5 minutes from my house. It supports a good cause (my FIL is retired Army so we try to support our military), the volunteers were extremely nice and supportive, and the goodie bag is the best I've ever seen.
Looking forward to next year's race!
Side note: I'm also on Bloglovin' now - Follow my blog with Bloglovin!
QOTD: Have you ever run so fast you thought your watch was broken??