Heat, hills & hormones the best & only way to describe this race! Despite putting my 80th race in the books; this race did not by any means go the way that I hoped! Alarm went off at 5:45am; I hopped out of bed, changed, showered and drove into NYC with hubby. There was absolutely no traffic; which made for a quick 55 minute drive in! We found a parking garage; parked my car and walked about 14 blocks to Central Park. In Central Park; I picked up my bib & met up with my sister in law Jess who was also running the 10k. While we waited; we listened to the music of the band 2U. They were awesome! We also took some pics with Sidney the Kidney!
It was an absolutely perfect picture perfect morning in Central Park, but the Heat scared me a bit as I am definitely a “cold weather runner.”
Announcements were made for all runners to start taking their places in the corrals so that is exactly what we did! We gave each other hugs & good luck wishes & within minutes; we were off. With the new setup of the corrals; the start of the race was quite crowded. The start was slow & it took about .5 miles for the crowds to open up & for me to get to a comfortable pace. The race started with a bit of an incline; which as I know is definitely expected in Central Park. I knew there were plenty more hills to come (running several 10k’s in central park over the years) ; I paced myself in the first mile at an 7:59/mile. I continued maintaining about the same pace for mile 2 as we ran through many rolling hills! I knew that cat hill and Harlem Hill were part of this course so I reminded myself that I had to conserve energy. Mile 3 came & it consisted of a bit of uphill followed by a nice long downhill; it felt amazing! I used the downhills to my advantage as I always do; flying through mile 3 with a 7:34/mile pace! I was feeling good, but it was getting extremely hot in the sun. I was sipping and pouring water over my head at every water stop, but by mile 3.5 something happened. I took the uphill like a champ then out of nowhere I became really nauseous and a bit dizzy. I knew part of it definitely had to be the sudden heat/humidity. I immediately slowed my pace; took a honey stinger gel & coasted to the next water stop where I took Gatorade and water – again pouring it over my head. At that point I came to the realization that as much as I wanted it to be; this just wasn’t my day. I focused on positive things like crossing the finish line; remembering that this was my 80th race no matter how it went; I also remembered that my friend Haley would be at mile 6 and that my hubby & brother in law were at the finish line. I prayed that I would make it to the finish line without throwing up. At mile 4 my pace had slipped to 8:21 and I knew all hopes of a good race or even a PR were gone. By mile 5 I felt a little better but my body was still telling me “I don’t want to go anymore” my legs were tight & I just wasn’t feeling like myself. I was confused; I tapered properly, rested, fueled properly – how could this happen? My mile 5 pace was a bit better hitting high 7:50’s. I thought to myself; just over 1 mile left – you can get through this! I kept my eye out for my friend Haley. At mile 6 I heard “Go Mere Go”; I was so excited to see her ! I waved and smiled & seeing her gave me that determination I needed to finish strong despite how I was feeling.
I gave it every last bit of energy I had in that final stretch! As my body continued to tell me “I don’t want to go anymore’ I dug deep and Sprinted with everything I had with a 7:47 pace. I was so focused on the finish line; I didn’t even see my hubby when I ran past him, but he snapped this photo of me giving it every last bit that I had with pure determination!
I crossed the finish line & can honesty say I have never been so thankful for a race to be over. I thought about what happened; still wondered why it happened, but in the end I was thankful to have officially crossed the finish line of my 80th race.
Overall not a bad time considering the circumstances, but by no means how I expected this day to go. After the race; I was handed my medal, picked up my race tee and saw my friend Haley (a runner herself) who had been out there cheering us on! I was so happy to see her; she is always so supportive & it has been way too long since I’ve seen her!
I immediately called my sister in law to see how she did! I knew that she crushed it!! met I was indeed correct; Jess ran a PR!!! This girl is seriously crushing it! Soo happy for you Jess! Jess was going for coffee after the race with a fellow “Instagrammer” and Mermaid Club Ambassador & invited us along.I had prior plans to meet my family down by the Jersey Shore so we did not go. We said goodbye to everyone and headed home to shower & change before meeting my family and Carter to enjoy the rest of this beautiful, sunny Saturday! I was surprised to find that the temperature down the shore and even by home was significantly cooler than it was in the city. It was approximately 15 degrees cooler by the shore.
I didn’t think about my race the rest of the day (a huge step for me)! I basically put it behind me chalking it up as ‘just a bad day!’. I normally ponder on the thought of why I had a bad race; hours upon hours after but this time I didn’t! I enjoyed the time with my family! I am so grateful to have constant love & support from my family and that means more to me than any time on my Garmin! It was a beautiful day spent with the ones I love & that means more to me than anything! The next day; I did figure out why I wasn’t feeling so hot on the course (it never fails) – let’s just say GIRL POWER is what pushed me through!! Wink, wink.
I am a huge fan of all the NYRR races; having run many over the years to complete my 9 + 1 to gain entry into the TCS NYC Marathon; which I have run 3 times! I haven’t run the UAE Healthy Kidney 10k since 2011”; although I have run several 10k’s in Central Park since. It is always great to run for such a great cause; as in this race – Kidney Disease. A few things have changed since I ran this race last; including each runner receiving a medal at the finish line. Despite not feeling very well; I still placed 57th out of 672 females 35 – 39, 355th female out of 3,879 females and 1,870th overall out of 8,033 runners & there is no way I am complaining about that!
Does heat affect you when you run? What do you do to keep from overheating? After a bad race; do you dwell on it too?
Thank you for reading & thank you as always for following my journey!!!
Next Up – Spring Lake 5 which officially kicks off summer here on the Jersey Shore!