Run a race in the rain – check!
Not sure if that was really on my bucket list but I knew it was inevitable. When I checked out the weather for race day I saw rain, rain and more rain and 71 with 96% humidity. I would take rain over humidity any day of the week but I never expected the buckets of water that would be dumped on us.
My alarm went off at 4:40 am. Race day had arrived. I had trained for this and I was ready. I quickly got dressed and hit the road. I would be driving over an hour to Boston for the BAA 10k.
It poured the entire way up there – the ride was awful but we made it in good time. My aunt was my coach for the day and she had everything mapped out for me. We were driving up and parking in the same place as the 5k so everything was pretty simple. The garage we parked at was just a few blocks from the start line.
It was only sprinkling when we walked out of the garage but I was prepared with a poncho to wear and plastic bags for my feet. I wanted to keep my shoes dry for as long as possible. The start area was pretty dead when we arrived but it filled up quickly. I am continuously impressed with the organization at B.A.A events. (the same group that hosts The Boston Marathon) They have a great setup: Lots of porta-potties, bag check tent, information tents, bib pick up (I had mine mailed), and t-shirt pick up.
It wasn’t long before the clouds opened up and everyone was soaked. The announcers did a great job at calming our fears of thunder and lightening. They kept us updated on the radar report as we waited for the start. While in the corrals, everyone was just laughing about the weather as it continued to dump on us.
The start went off without right at 8 am with three waves. I started my watch about 30 seconds too late. I thought I hit it when I crossed the start but I looked down and nothing was going on! oops!
I decided to run with the poncho as long as possible. Just shy of mile 1 I started getting warm so I ripped it off and carried it until the water stop after mile 1. My watch was about 0.05 short due to starting it late.
Around mile 2 the lead men were on their way back which would be mile 4 for them. I always love hearing the cheers as they approach. At the water stop at mile 2 I decided to eat a few SportBeans so I walked for a minute while drinking my water. Right about here, I saw one of the wheelchair women in the middle of the wave 1 runners with a look a defeat on her face. You could see that it just wasn’t her day. I wish I could have reached over and given her a high-five and a few words of encouragment.
Between Mile 2 and 3 there is a long, steady climb and you run next to everyone on their way back. This course is perfect for negative splits. Once you reach the turn around, just past the 5k mark, you get to run down the hill that you just ran up.
Mile 1: 10:18
Mile 2: 10:28
Mile 3: 10:28
official 5k chip time 32:31
At this point I’m feeling great. I tell myself to pick up the pace a little and come finish faster than I started. I stopped again to grab water after mile 4 and have a few more SportBeans.
The rain had slowed to a sprinkle. My feet were soaked but they weren’t bothering me at all. I did keep getting a wedgie with my SportSkirt that I kept adjusting. I apologize if you were behind me one of the million times I “adjusted” haha. At one point I said, “ah, screw it just run”.
The race was great with a water stop (and Gatorade) after every mile marker including one just after mile 5 and just before mile 6. Miles were clearly marked and they had an additional marker at the 5k point, 8k point (another chip point) and 800m remaining.
At 800m remaining, I picked up the pace even more. I wanted to empty my tank, give it all I had. I saw my aunt just after the last turn onto the final stretch. and i booked it to the end. At the 5k they were handing out medals right after you crossed the finish which caused some congestion. At the 10k they were much further back which was a great improvement.
I tried to jump for the camera but someone stood right in front of him as I crossed the finish line. boo! move out of the way!
Mile 4: 9:42
Mile 5: 9:26
Mile 6: 9:06
Garmin time 6.23 in 1:01:08 avg pace 9:49/mile
Official finish time: 1:01:37 (which means my second half was 29:06 5k PR!!)
I felt amazing after this race. I am soooo happy with my time and my faster second half. I love that my pace was pretty steady for the first half and then each mile got faster. To me, I think that my training has really taught me how my body feels at different paces and it allows me to run smarter.
The finishers area offered lots of goodies. I grabbed my medal, posed for a few pictures and grabbed some grub. Bagels, bananas, Craisins, water, Gatorade, fresh smoothies and Power Bars.
From what I’ve seen at the 5k, 10k and while volunteering at the Marathon, I’m really looking forward to wrapping this Medley up with the Half Marathon in October. BAA puts on a great race. If you get a chance to run one of their races, then jump at the opportunity.
In the end… the rain was no big deal. And I feel pretty bad ass for having such a great run in those conditions!
However on the drive home it was coming down so heavily that I missed my exit and drove in the wrong direction a lot further then I care to admit. That only seems to happen when you really need or want to be somewhere. In my case I *needed* to relieve my babysitter and *wanted* a nice long shower. But instead I drove…. and drove… and drove haha.
Would you skip out on a race if it were raining? How about a training run?