If at this point you thought I might throw in my two cents about cannabis, weighing in on the various controversies, getting into the many environmental benefits of the crop hemp or the "medical" marijuana discussion, you are off mark, even though I am curious about many aspects of the aforementioned "weed".
I signed up for the Sweetwater 420 5k around a week ago as part of my plan to kick-start my physical fitness routine. I often sign up for an event to attempt to motivate me.
And it has worked in the past.
Waking Up Confused and Unprepared
I had thankfully picked up my race packet the day before, but that had been the extent to my race preparations. I hadn't been running recently or doing much of anything physical which was understandable given my work schedule. What was really unlike me, was my pre-race-night prep.
Typically, even when I may not have trained as much as I would have liked, which is pretty much every time, I still make sure that for the day of the race I am ready. I know where the start is, how long it will take to get there. I've laid out what I'm going to wear. I know what I will be eating and drinking, both the evening before and the morning of. If the course has obstacles or something out of the ordinary, I have a good idea what they are and I am at least mentally ready for it. I also have a good idea of how I'm going to document the event, whether that be with my Iphone, or Go-Pro, or digital camera, the batteries are charged and memories cards and the like have space on them, etc
That was not the case.
I had things laid out but not in a way that made much sense. I had planned, sort of on biking there and covering the race with the Go-Pro with a bunch of Facebook posts.
Cindy ended up driving me there and I took one very bad photo on my Iphone.
In the morning's madness, I started coming across things that reminded me of my priorities and the direction we were headed prior to my work detour.
Camping gear, Skye's home school stuff, various books and articles, maps etc, all things that brought me back to our journey and where we are on it, which by the way, we're not so sure of and know that it could shift as soon as we think we know.
It also got me up and out of the house and running, sort of.....
It's Only a 5K
Unless you are lined up in the very front of the pack, trying to gauge your running ability in a 5k with a couple of thousand entries is a fool's journey. The first mile is so packed, it is an accomplishment to maintain a jog and not trample or be trampled. I have on more than one occasion attempted to weave and jostle and dart about in trying to get a decent time. Its simply not worth the frustration. For a PR, find a small race with a course that allows you to go for it.
This race was particularly challenging in that regards. At one point a motorcycle cop was riding on the sidewalk with his siren blaring, attempting to move runners back onto the course. There were many bottlenecks where the 2000+ runners were forced through pathways which were meant accommodate 5 people abreast. It was a serious clusterf**k.
Even so, generally around half-way through a 5k the crowd thins out enough so that one could conceivably run. And even though I intellectually know that my run time at this point has little to do with how fast I could run this distance I glance down at my watch and decide try to make up for the slow start. For a marathon, this is easy and it in fact often works out better to be slowed by the crowd in the early miles. Even with a 10k you have 5 miles to improve your pace time.
So this last mile or so becomes a sprint.
Sprinting is hard, really hard. And if you haven't been training much, it can feel like you're going to die.
I never really got to that point, because I didn't see the second mile marker and when I came to the final turn where I could see the finish line it was just about 100 yards. It seemed almost unsportsmanlike to blow past people in those last feet.
I did it anyway.
I collected my race T-shirt and ambled home. That mile and a half walk took around the same time that the actual race did.
I need to get back in shape and its going to take time, work and dedication.
Atlanta is going to heat up quick. It was a cool, overcast day and I was dripping wet in the first mile. I had forgotten what a challenge it is to run in the South once things start warming up.
We are nomads.
It's again time to start downsizing and getting ready to hit the road.
Results just in:
Funny note, the 13 people who "placed" before me, had slower chip times, the 13th one having the exact same chip finish time and of the 50 people who crossed the finish line before me only 5 had better chip times. 2058 finished the race.