Monday, February 1, 2010

Kansas City Groundhog 5k

I finally got to run the Kansas City Groundhog 5k. I have wanted to run this race since I first moved here last year. Unfortunately it was not in the cards last year. We got all signed up and went race and after having to park like a mile or so away we missed the start of the 5k. Then we decided to run the 10k since we were there and it started 1 hour after the 5k so we did not miss that one. When the gun went off for the 10k we were lined up and ready to go when a woman pulled me out and said that I could NOT run with the stroller. I explained to her I asked several people before signing up and they said it was allowed, but she said it was not and would not let my husband and I run with it. Oh well what a total disappointment that was. This year we ran with our friend Scott and his wonderful wife Kari babysat for us (THANK YOU SO MUCH KARI!!!). Apparently this year strollers were allowed but I was not taking any chances on that, been there heard that one before right.

I consider this my Birthday run since I was born on Groundhogs day and this is a Groundhog run, so this had me super excited about this race. Then the fact that this race is underground in caves which are about 65 degrees… WOO HOO I got to wear some summer clothes and run in the heat (it was about 19 outside). Well the caves were not that cool, I was thinking caves like with bats and stuff super cool right. Well this was more like an underground parking garage, sure it was a cave but a cave that was made into a parking garage the cool factor was just not there. But it was still warm and I could wear my new super cool running skirt so that was a huge plus.

Okay on to the race. Neal (hubby), Scot, and I split up for the start because they are a lot faster than I am so they went to the front and I kept to the middle of the pack. I figured this was a pretty flat course so I could hopefully make my below 30 min goal (this is my goal for every 5k). While waiting for the gun to go off I met a really nice girl. She is a runner but has not been running much in this winter because it is just too freaking cold for normal people to go outside (I must not be normal). She told me she usually runs a 24-26 min race. I wished her good luck, knowing full well I would not see her again after the start she was just too fast for me. By this time we are all getting antsy and just want to run when the gun finally announces the start of the race so we are off….well not quite we stand there for a while then move a couple fee then walk some then finally we can run (gotta love big races it takes forever to get to the start line).

Off I go in to check out this cave (I mean parking lot). The first mile had a lot of turns and I felt really good. I had no idea what my pace was since my trusty Garmin would not work underground being that it needs satellite reception and all. I am just cursing along when I see this little kid running with his dad. This kid must be about 5yr old. He is all decked out in his running gear, UnderArmour shirt, shorts, running shoes, and of course the headband (I totally must be related to this kids mother in some way, check out the pic of Amanda in the logo with the headband). I quickly realize that this kid is a STAR, he is so going to dog me, I mean come one the kid is 5 and he is totally kicking my butt. I made an attempt to keep up for a while and even ran with his dad for a bit to let him know that I thought his son was Amazing and I looked forward to seeing him in the Olympics in a few years. This kid was just awesome, and I was left hoping that one day that could be me with my daughter as he left me in his 9min mile dust.

At this point I see the girl I met waiting at the start and I pass her, really I passed her. I am thinking wow; I am really kicking some 5k butt here and am totally going to PR. I figure I am about a mile and a half in by now when I see the 1 mile mark with the time saying 10:19. BAM, I am crushed. I totally thought I was doing better than that. I mean I kept up with the kid for a while, I passed the speedy girl and I am only running a 10:19. I was starting to feel winded and with the thought that there was NO WAY at this point that I could make my PR. I probably ran about another ½ mile then I did it people I walked. Only for about 30 or 40 seconds but it was walking. Then I picked it up again and decided since I could not PR I would just keep it nice and easy and try to enjoy it a bit. By this time I am getting pretty hot, I am so use to freezing when I run that I feel like I am burning up and all I can think about is that I am going to die in a month at the ½ marathon in Florida. Running in the heat is sooooo much harder than in the cold. And yes everyone I do realize that I kind of just admitted that there is something about this frozen tundra that I like…sigh I guess I am turning in to a winter girl after all.

So as the race progresses we get close to an entrance to the cave (I mean parking lot) and get a WONDERFULL blast of that 19 degree air and I am loving it. Man that was refreshing! I skipped all the water stops since I walked and did not want to make my time even slower. I ended up passing that speedy girl again; guess she was having a bad race because if I passed her she was not so speedy. I think at this point I was speeding up and slowing down quite a bit. I for sure was not steady at all with my pace. I thought for a couple min that the finish line was around one corner so I booked it only to find that I was wrong. So I just kept cursing along cheering on all the mothers pushing their little ones in the joggers (I know when I am running it always feels good to hear someone shout Way to go Mom! Or something so I always do it when I see someone pushing a jogger too). Then I see it the 3 mile mark, so off I go as fast as I can both feet getting airborne at the same time (really check out the pic. I am flying). I am a rock star, I am a runner, I am super fast, I hope I get a good race pic, try not to look like you’re dying so you can get a good race pic, and pass these people because they are in the way. All that was going through my mind as I races across the finish line in 32:30. Neal and Scott were waiting for me and told me what a great job I did then we headed off to get some much needed water.
Later I will find out that my chip time was 31.12 which put me at a 10:03 pace. This also means that when I came up to the 1mile mark and they showed my time it was probably closer to a 9min mile and I could have made my PR and goal if I kept going. I should have considered the time it took me to get to the start. Both Neal and Scott did totally awesome, Scott (on the right) ran a 22:33 and Neal (on the Left) did 25:19. I am so proud of them both. We had a great time and I am sure we will run this race again. I need to work on my pacing and not gun it out the start like I keep doing…bad Tracey.

This race is the biggest low mileage race in Kansas City. Because of the warm temps and it being in the middle of winter everyone runs this race, that is also why they have to split up the 5k and 10k to run at different times. There is not much to see on this race, definitely not as cool as I thought it would be. I will run it again every year for the simple fact that it is warm and it falls on or around my birthday. All in all it was a good race and I was happy we did it. I was and am so proud of my hubby, he really kicked it up and had a great time. For someone who hardly ever runs he sure is getting fast. Maybe he is hiding a secret running passion and gets up in the middle of the night to run on the tready, I don’t know but he sure is getting fast. I love you honey and I am soooo proud of you.


Anonymous said...

You are such a great writer. You make me laugh and feel like I am there. I think writing should be your profession. You are GREAT! :0)

Tracey Kite said...

Thank you so much for the complement. Writing was always the thing I hated most in school, and I have been very surprised at how much I have enjoyed writing this blog. Thanks again for the complement and I hope I can keep you entertained with my ramblings in the future.