Wednesday, January 2, 2013

The GNYER (Great New Year's Eve Race)

Sure, run a 5k on New Year's Eve; it will be fun!

SARC (Summit Athletic Racing Club) sponsored the Great New Year's Eve Race at 4:00.  The weather looked cold, but runnable. . .until I set foot in the parking lot.  I've been running for less than a year, so every race I run is a new experience.  My running buddies told me that this was a fun race, and the jacket is super-cool.  Okay, I can endure anything for under thirty minutes, right?  It had BETTER be for under thirty minutes.

This is the hill I had to run.  Twice.  Look all the way up.

As soon as the siren blew, the snow blew along with it, right into our faces.  It got colder and slicker with each step.  I was amazed to see a group of women dressed as Playboy Bunnies, complete with bustiers and tiaras.  "Don't mock them, " a friend told me.  "They are much faster runners than either of us."

I didn't match or break my personal record for the 5k, so I have to take my victories where I can find them.  As I was running uphill (again!) to come back to the finish line, a man next to me decided he was going to blow by me.  Because I have a good coach who makes me do the painful stuff, I knew that wasn't going to happen.  I kept my pace, and within thirty seconds he dropped back, gasping, while I chugged on ahead.  Maybe I had a tiny, smug smile on my face.  More likely, I was trying not to keel over.

After the race, I basked in the glow of endorphins while sipping lukewarm soup.  Was it worth it?  The runner's high was incredible, but I don't know if I'll do it again.  I suppose that because of global warming I'll be able to run this race in shorts and a tech tee in future years.

But that damned hill will still be there.