Saturday, December 8, 2012

Turkey Trot 10k

Holmes Chiropractic has been putting on this ever-growing local race for a few years, now drawing over a thousand runners on Thanksgiving morning. I guess we all feel a need to burn off some excess calories before inhaling our lunches, dinners, desserts, second dinners, and the midnight scavenge in the refrigerator.

I met up with Erik Butler, Sharon's husband, in the warm coffee house as he had picked up my bib for me. I decided to wear my new bright pink Brooks top and black capris, making me an easy target to chase in the race. My Garmin has been dying quite fast lately, even after being fully charged, so I opted to wear my watch and play the "run by effort" strategy.

The 10kers were asked to line up in front of the 5kers and with happy music blasting through speakers, we were sent off down the road to chase fast times, burnt calories or just to create memories with loves ones on Thanksgiving. Last year I ran it in 44:35, fourth female overall.  Without a Garmin, I wouldn't know what pace I ran until I finished.

Downtown Gig Harbor 
I LOVE the first 1 1/2 miles of this race! I ran the 5k one year and it was amazingly flat and beautiful, paralleling the harbor's marina. After 1 1/2 miles, the 10k runners continue on while the 5k runners turn back to the finish. We found ourselves with 2 miles of up and down running which tested my lungs and legs. I wasn't sure what place female I was in but it wasn't the top 3 for sure. Garminless, I did what I could, not knowing how slowly I was going on the ups.  I was passed and I passed others.

About mile 4, we were treated to downhill and flat for most of the way to the finish.  My legs came back to life!  At the 5k turnaround, we merged with walkers and slower runners, but I was mostly able to run it without having to dodge people. It's always fun to see how many friends and family participate in these events and the holidays always bring out the festive outfits to admire. A couple children tried to match me stride for stride until their parents called them back. Future distance runners? Maybe.

I rounded the last corner and heard music and pushed myself through the finish line, 44:49 and 7th female overall. No awards ceremony for this race, just great memories. Holmes Chiropractic uses this race to bring attention to and provide for the local food bank. Runners are asked to bring 2 cans of food with them before or on race day.

So I managed to run close to last year's time without a Garmin. Average was 7:14 even though I felt like I was jogging 10+ minute miles on the uphills.  I stayed around to cheer on some other runners before leaving and made my way back to my house, lungs hurting from the cold air. This was a great race in place of the speedwork I've been doing for the past 2+ months. I worked my way up to 9 x 800s (Yasso 800s) the week prior to this race. My goal was to hit the 800s in 3:30 or faster and I did most of the time.  Next race would be the Seattle Marathon!