Saturday, February 05, 2011

First Race of 2011 (aka Mini Loopster Fest)

My friend, Coelle, is a member of a running club up in Vancouver.  Every Saturday, they have low key races.  Free to members and $2 for non-members.  And they don't start until 10 AM!!  This week's was at Lacamas Lake with a choice of 3 or 7 miles.  My plan was to head out plenty early and get 6 ish miles in then run the 3 as a fast finish for my long run of the week.  What could go wrong with a plan like that?

Yeah, right...  To begin, I pushed that old snooze button on the alarm waaaay too many times so I left later than planned.  And it took me longer to get to the park than I expected.  I parked and thought, "No problem.  I can still get 4 miles before it starts."  I set reached over and unlocked the car doors, set the keys on the seat and headed around to get everything ready to head out.  Uhhh, oops!  I didn't unlock the doors...  I had just locked my keys in the car.  Sigh.  Pull out the phone to call Coelle.  No service.  Well, at least, I was wearing my running shoes.  I pulled off my warm up pants and started down the trail. 

My legs were heavy and sluggish.  My lungs were not happy--but my inhaler was in the car.  Sigh.  I ran out about a mile then headed back.  About a mile because my Garmin was in the car.  Sigh.  I stretched and waited for Coelle to arrive.  She had told me that at least one other Looper was planning to be there so I kept my eyes pealed for anyone familiar.  A few minutes later, I saw a woman that had to be MildSauce.  I introduced myself.  She is as sweet and funny as she appears in writing.  Shortly, Coelle, MildSauce and I were talking and Raforken joined us.  Photo op!!  Raforken headed out for her 9 miles before the race began.  MildSauce was doing the 7 and Coelle and I were running the 3. 

The race was low key, but very well organized!  The start line was behind the clock.  The route headed accross a few feet of grass to an asphalt path before a hard packed trail of pea gravel.  The trail was full of rollers.  Coelle and I headed out quickly, but not too hard.  It will be interesting to see our final time and see if the pace matches my perception.  My guess is that it will not.  The whole thing felt hard.  I told Coelle that I was doing better than I sounded.  She laughed as she was wondering.  Hey, no inhaler = lots of wheezing.  Normally, we talk nonstop when we run together.  Not today.  We were working too hard.  A few words here and there were enough.  I was so happy to see the turn around!  Most of the return we were following a 10 yo boy.  I wish I had that much energy.  He would sprint up the hills then coast down.  For the most part, he stayed right in front of us.  He could have finished much faster if her weren't running from side to side and jumping off rocks along the way.  Every time I thought we might catch him, he would sprint ahead.  The distraction was nice and helped me get into a zone.  I was ready to be finished.  I tend to speed up on the return on out-and-back courses.  We rounded the corner together and the finish line was in sight.  One last push and we crossed the line together. 

We headed back out to jog an easy cool down and cheered for MildSauce coming toward the finish line.  We jogged our cool down--and walked some since my left ITB tightened up.  Mild Sauce met up with us and we visited.  There is always something to discuss with other runner!  On our return to the parking lot, Corina's AAA membership was a there to unlock my car.  More talking and laughing before we headed our seperate ways.  It was a morning that could have ended poorly yet had a happy ending because of friends!

juanitagf, Coelle, MildSauce, Raforken


NattyBumpo said...

I'd be lying if I said I wasn't jealous...

I'm glad you guys had a great time, in spite of locking your keys in the car. That is SOME wacky hair on MildSauce, but she looks like she would be a blast to chat with. Actually the whole lot of you do.

Teri S. said...

It sounds like you had a wonderful time during your race. Congrats! Wanted to let you know that we are looking at doing a double crossing of Wildwood trail in Sept - but it would be easy enough to just go one way! We've got such a fun group of ladies running in pdx - would love to have you join us :)