After a three-month break from races, I ran in my first race of the fall season on Labor Day—the Golden Valley Harriers Labor Day Races. I signed up for the 10k back in June soon after my half marathon, and honestly signed up that early so I would only have to pay the minimum amount (early bird pricing!).
I woke up around 6:00am and got ready. I wasn’t feeling too hungry, but I had an english muffin with some dark chocolate peanut butter spread just so I had something in me just in case.
I still needed to pick up my bib and shirt, so I had to be at the race area before 7:30am. After picking up the essentials, I had about a 40 minute wait till the race started at 8 am, so I chilled in a corner while watching others follow through with their pre-race routines of stretches and warm-up jogs.
The distances offered that day included a 10k run/walk, a 5k run/walk, and 1k fun run for the kids. I had not run a 10k in a few weeks, but I didn’t feel too nervous about it. My goal was to keep a pace at or below my usual 10:00/mi, but if I felt faster, I would have gone with it.
We were signaled to go a little after 8 am, and we matched our strides with the beats of some talented Taiko drummers. The 10kers left first, followed by the 5kers ten minutes after.
For the first two miles, I kept a ~9:40/mi pace. Normally, I usually face a challenge (mental or physical) with the second mile, but it didn’t happen this time. We were fortunate to have the local high school cross country and track teams cheer us on every 0.5 miles or so. I also didn’t have a problem zoning out, and just focused on keeping a comfortable (but not too slow) pace.
The weather was favorable as well. We had dark clouds overhead, and even a light drizzle! But even with this cool weather, humidity was still an issue. I don’t normally sweat profusely, but the damp feeling was not too fun to have while running.
I made it to the end with a 10 minute per mile pace, and not a bit tired. Back at the race reg. area, times were being posted on laptops and people were already lining up to check where they placed.
I had heard about the free Whole Foods breakfast, since WF was a sponsor of the race…
…I wasn’t anticipating the HUGE line.
I guess it was understandable—organic yogurt, granola, and fruit were the main items being served, after all.
I was also hoping there would be more booths (and freebies…), but Whole Foods ended up hogging up the attention. It was the first race I ever attended where I left with NO BARS . What they did have as “freebies” was a selection of some pathetic sample packs, but I took some anyways:
I gave them to my sister who was visiting for the weekend, so she could used them back in the dorms. (You never know when tooth powder may come in handy!)
Overall, the race pros included the cool-ish weather, and relatively flat, breezy course. The major CON was not enough freebies, haha! Oh well, it’s only the beginning of the fall race season, and there will be better races
Are you excited about the fall racing season?
What fall race are you looking forward to?