One of the things that makes a race is the volunteers. They give you water, register you, give you your package, and encourage you along the route. Without them, the race would be way less awesome. So, I wanted to give back. I have volunteered before and wanted to make it a fairly regular activity.
Two weeks ago I volunteered at the Penguin Pace 5k that was put on by the Howard County Striders, the local group that I joined. I didn’t know about the Penguin Pace, but I got an email asking for volunteers and decided it would be good to do. I thought that I was going to be a course martial, so I got all bundled up and got myself over to the Center that was hosting it at 0630 in the morning since the race started at 0745.
I looked for someone to tell me where to go and met up with a nice lady in a Striders sweatshirt who set me up handing out T-shirts. I loved talking to the runners and getting them set with their shirts. One of the things that did bug me a bit, was minor. I was there to help out, to work. The other ladies that were handing out shirts, both extremely nice, confounded me. When runners approached the table, they would only then wrap up their conversation to help them. To me, you should greet them as the approach, get their stuff and then wish them well. Ah well, at least they were there. One of the other ladies was also a little TMI on the fertility issues and kids thing. But all and all, I had a good time. Also, there was a fantastic breakfast spread.
Today, along with Kerry and LeeAnn, I ran in the Love the Run You’re With 5k. It was my first 5k of 2012 and it was a doozy! First, it was 22* outside with super gusty winds. I layered up with two socks, running tights, regular cotton pants, long sleeved T, fleece, wind breaker and hat. I also wore a bandana to keep help prevent skiers’ hack, a hacky cough that I get after running in cold, dry air.
The race started on time, which already made it much better than my last race. That one, at least started with a downhill. This one started with a nice steep hill. The backside of it was a much less steep downhill. There were some flats and rolling hills to the turning point and then it was back around and the consistent slant up the backside and then down the super steep hill to the finish. Lucky for me, when I was slowly struggling up the back of the hill, I made a friend! We chatted for a bit, ran down the hill and then her trainer met us. With her trainer cheering us on, we sprinted to the finish!
The race was a lot of fun, but it was a struggle. Mostly, the hills and the cold were troublesome. Then there was the under-training. I thought I had been doing at least ok on my runs, but apparently not. I suppose that I should have known since I struggled through 2.5 miles this week and was super tired. This was my worst run, but I am glad I did it. It definitely showed me that I need to get some more running done. It took me 45:01 (14:31 pace), probably due to all the walking.
Also, that I need to figure out a way to get in more running outside. I thought my calves were going to explode all over. That would have been both tragic and messy. I must make them stronger with less dreadmill time.
Oh! Good news? New shoes!