ONE MILLLLLLLION INCHES!
Nothing like starting off a 3-day weekend with a free race with some friends. I met up with Kerrie at the finish line in Tukwila at around 8am to drop off her van and ride in my car to the start. **Side note: If anyone needs some decent looking tires, or maybe a 15 inch tv...I know a spot where they're free. ;) I jokingly told Kerrie that I hope her tires are on the van when we get back (but at least they wouldn't go far, right?). As we were pulling away from the parking spot in my car, a dude that looked like a puzzled runner rolled down his window next to us "You guys running the million inch race?"...and he proceeds to ramble a little..."Mind if I ride with you?"
"Um, ok." Have fun squeezing in the back of my soggy convertible. So, he climbs in back and proceeds to "loud talk" the entire way to the start. Kerrie nailed it right on the head "Wow, this is far!"--I wasn't sure if she wanted to be done with the awkward ride as much as I was or the distance was intimidating. :)
We followed dude's directions to a school, but I swore that there was parking close to the trail. Dude got out, with his entire bunch of bananas and his light grey running tights (just an FYI...light colored running tights are not the greatest idea. period.), and Kerrie and I decided to look for that parking lot. Sure enough, there was Amanda and Mel by the trail!
This is where I got really excited. :) All of us wore something pink, in honor of Valentine's, and I wanted to "ham it up" to the fullest and sported this wickedly awesome ensemble:
This is actually after the finish...so you know I made it!
After GU-ing it up and trying a Margarita flavored Clif Shot Blok (extra sodium to reduce cramps, extra strange to think of a margarita on a run), we proceeded to the start with about 20 other people. But, quick pic!
Mel wanted to go the first 8 miles at BQ pace (8:20), which we did pretty well with, and the fastest miles were 5-8 (8:13, 8:17, 8:15, 8:16). After our Garmins beeped for the 8th mile we slowed down and just enjoyed the rest of the run. The trail itself is very straight and fairly flat, with a lot of swamp land on either side. It crosses a couple train tracks and some highways, and it goes through a very industrial area of town. At one point Mel was acting as tour guide (she runs this trail often) and told me that there was an ice cream plant that smells like waffle cones baking during the week...um, smelled it! Probably drooled on myself a little. Then there were the random bird massacre sightings (just a bunch of feathers and various bird parts...yes, appetizing after smelling the waffle cones), a couple hawks, some ducks in cute pairs (they were sleeping through their Valentine's weekend), a pair of geese that we called "gice" (rhymes with mice) in our running delirium at mile 12.
The man that put on the race was nice and had two water stops that his daughter ran at mile 4 and mile 11. Mel and I actually stopped at the 11 to refill her water bottle, and I downed a small cup of orange Gatorade (running lesson ahead!). We felt pretty good, her with her Chomps and Gu, and me with my Black Cherry Shot Bloks (my fave!)...our pace was steady and we were laughing at everything. Then my stomach churned. Oh CRAP. Thank goodness we were next to a long string of casinos and I told Mel I needed to stop right then. ***space intentionally left blank***
Ok, not going to drink Gatorade during a race anymore. Checked that one off my list.
The rest of the run we were just wondering if we took the right path because the orange arrows pointing the way were almost washed away from the rain. I checked Gus at around 13.3 miles and saw that he said 1:55! So, half marathon PR?? I think yes! I'm shooting for 1:56 at the Mercer Half...but I might go lower.
Once we saw the "finish line" of people, I told Mel to "kick it" and that she did! We sprinted as best as we could to the group of people. After high fives and pictures, Mel texted Amanda to find out where she was...
Mileage - 16.34 miles
Time - 2:22:37
Of course, since Amanda wasn't aware that the million inches was actually 1,035,302 inches, she pretty much stopped and wondered where we were. I tell you, those extra 35 thousand inches were tough! :)
When we spotted her coming down the trail I wanted to "hide" but of course that wasn't likely because my outfit was brighter than the Las Vegas strip. Bummer. Can't really be a ninja running bandit in pink and red. Rainbow ninja? Naw.
We contemplated looking for Kerrie in her van (and perhaps seeing how fast that baby could go!), but according to her text she had veered off course and had gone an extra mile...but she was about 1/2 mile from where we walked to meet her. And then we saw the familiar pink and there she was!
Drove back to the start for some fun pics...
I don't know if we were "stretching" or what
This is the gangsta pose (to hide nippage!!)
Awww, we're cute.
Awww, we're cold.
We said farewell to Kerrie as she had family plans, donned our post-run gear and headed to the lovely Red Robin for burgers, fries and coffee. YUM!
Us, our food, and our Bondi Bands (thanks Mel!)
Great job, ladies!! You all rocked it!
Read the other amazing race recaps (because you know I left out details):
(Sorry this is a day late, my computer had a virus! GRRRR...I will do Sunday Shout-outs again soon)