Monday, July 08, 2013

Firecracker 5000

I'll go ahead and say it: I love the Firecracker 5000, Seattle's local Fourth of July (ok, so it starts at 11:55pm on July 3rd) 5K! I'm an evening runner, so I'm pretty happy on late night runs ( the spirit of true disclosure, I had to pre-game with a latte, because midnight is WAY beyond my bedtime). Plus, it's just a little wacky. And involves glow sticks! This is also my roommate's favorite course and it's fun to have company.

I mean, not that I was "alone," because there was a very healthy Seattle Green Lake contingent at the race:

Yes, I KNOW this photo is atrocious
Woooooo, SGLRG! We had some amazing performances and it's always SO fun to see my running buddies!

So, roommate & I got down to the Seattle Center around 10:45 and had no trouble finding street parking. Next order of business: bibs - which went so much more smoothly than last year, when they lost Shana's registration. The shirt, however, was pretty atrocious. Just as an aside - they moved the race from the stadium to the area around the big fountain at the Seattle Center this year. While the first little bit of the course was still way too crowded (WTF, lumping the 8-12 minute milers all together and calling us JOGGERS?!?), I definitely think this was an improvement. Then, off to the SGLRG photo.

And maybe a few other photos:
Finally, we got into position and took off! So, the original plan for the weekend involved another 5K in Montana, so I'd decided to take this one easy and pace Shana (I'd also done a session with my trainer earlier in the evening, so an attempt to push the pace super hard probably wasn't on the cards anyway). We went out WAY too fast with a 10:31 mile, so the next two miles involved me chugging along slowishly and prodding her to keep running when she took walk breaks. She was definitely hitting some walls, but never came to a complete stop and didn't hit me upside the head when I told her that it was time to pull it together and keep running.

Somewhere on the last major hill, on one of the walk breaks, we got passed by a...larger...gentleman in a very tight neon green shirt who berated Shana for not going "slow and steady." Which...F--- OFF! I'm sorry, but there's no place for criticizing other people's runs! You can do it in your head all that you want, but don't actually say anything mean to another runner! I mean, if that was his mantra and his goal for the race was to run the whole thing, then awesome, but you don't tell other people how to run their race (without their express permission, obviously). It was obnoxious. Needless to say, that gave Shana a little extra push to pass his butt and stay ahead.

I was super proud of her - she got a 20 second PR and came within a whisker of doing a sub-12 pace for the race. SO CLOSE! And she was totally going to puke at the finish line. Job done! (And for my own satisfaction, I POWERED up the stupid Mercer hill that I hate so much, which felt amazing.)

Oh! And Mr. Slow and Steady: TOTALLY came up to us as we were retrieving my fabulous Oiselle spike bag from gear check and made some comment about how "slow and steady always wins." To which Shana replied: "too bad I beat you....," which I thought showed remarkable restraint on her part (because no blood was spattered).

Of course, several days later we both BURST out laughing when I told her to just keep it slow and steady, on one of our hikes through Glacier National Park (STUNNING photos to come).

So, yeah. Another Firecracker 5000 in the books, another glow in the dark t-shirt in the drawer, another PR for my roommate. Not a bad night at the races!