Time: 7:45 p.m.
Temperature: 75 degrees
Course Profile: Flat, except for the non-stop hills
Outfit: Totally cute
As I mentioned yesterday, last night was the Moonlight 4 Miler, a local road runners race with ice cream in lieu of race tees. I was really excited to run this race. To begin with, I love ice cream. And second, it was my first four miler - an instant PR.
The weather wasn't really cooperating yesterday. We were hit with a series of thunderstorms in the hour before race time. I was convinced that I was going to get there to find out that it was canceled. I arrived at the start just before 7 p.m. and caught up with Mrs. D in the parking lot. We snapped this quick picture (I didn't want to carry my camera in the rain) and headed over to pick up our race numbers.
Immediately after getting my bib, the skies opened and the race director commanded everyone back to their cars to wait out the storm. Here we are waiting in the car (Mrs. D, Earth Momma Mer and Me).
Just before 7:30 (the original start time), we headed back to the start area. Shortly after the 1/2 mile kid's race concluded, we were toeing the line. And it was steamy. Just standing there my sunglasses were steaming up.
Once the race started, we headed through the parking lot out to West Creek Parkway and did a series of two out and backs. The entire four miles was rolling hills with almost no flat sections. I started out faster than I had intended (Garmin clocked a 6:20 at one point) but I was feeling good. I decided that I was going to run hard, but comfortably and not look at my watch. All I wanted to do was run strong. And I did just that. With the exception of one woman, with whom I played a cat and mouse game the whole race, not a single person passed me after the first half mile.
As I was finishing, I knew I was in good position. Due to the layout of the course, I could see the leaders headed towards the finish and I knew there weren't very many women ahead of me. And from what I could tell, there weren't any other Athenas (yes, I weigh 151 and race Athena) ahead of me. So, I kicked it into high gear and crossed the line in 32:13.
I was super pumped. I was really hoping to break 35 minutes, based on the course and humidity, but I killed it. It was awesome. Then, after cooling down, stretching out my seized calves and eating some ice cream, I ran Mrs. D in (she did awesome in her first four miler).
At the conclusion of the race, there were a bunch of random prizes ranging from candy bars to a Garmin. I walked away with a new running cap. And the best prize ever - a FIRST PLACE finish in the Athena division (I was also 3rd in my age group and 15th woman overall). This is my sweet hardware.
How cool is that?