This weekend was such a treat. His Lordship’s mother, Madame Marchant, came in town for the weekend and much food/drink/shopping were enjoyed by all.
But you have to pay to play, and I am right in the thick of marathon training so the long weekend runs must not be forgotten. And once again, I had a very simple training plan for the weekend:
• Long run to Brooklyn where I would meet Claire.
• Race on Sunday.
I awoke on Saturday to pure shit: drizzly, windy, and 37 degrees. Woof. I told Claire that I would be leaving the apartment promptly at 7:00 am as I needed to be out shopping with le Madame no later than 11:00.
“I just went outside. This is where I need your opinion. It’s 37. And drizzly. And windy. I’m no scientist, but I don’t think running three hours in cold rain is good for the immune system.”
“Yeah that sounds shitty.”
“Do we take chance on pneumonia?”
That said, I bagged it. Claire is a baller and she ran in the cold rain. I decided that it would make me for a lousy shopping partner/racer. So I went shopping and sushi-eating instead of running.
And that’s when Sunday happened.
The Colon Cancer Challenge is comprised of three runs: 1.7 mile walk; 4-mile race; 15k. Pick your fancy. His Lordship and I opted for the 4-miler. What was really special about the day was that Madame Marchant is a colon cancer survivor. Needless to say, Chris and I ran this race for her!
We ran an easy warm-up on 5th Avenue to the corrals, and I soon found myself in the yellow corral. This marked the first time that I was in the first three corrals of a NYRR race. As most runners do (I won’t say all, cause I’m not sure if all runners do this), I looked around to see who I was with. Lots of serious runners, and I found myself quite intimidated. I listened to the illustrious tones of Peter ChaCha (“..Proceed to 102nd street transverse and take a left…), and before I knew it the gun had gone off.
Then we started moving. Quickly.
I am no stranger to the latter corrals. In fact, it took me over 20 minutes to cross the start of the NYC Half two weeks ago. So color me surprised when I found myself running at a fast pace right off the bat.
“Oh, balls. Here we go.”
The first mile sucked—I was tired, my contacts were bothering me, and I really wasn’t in the racing spirit. It also didn’t help that Cat Hill was in the middle of mile 1. My Garmin beeped with a 7:17 pace. As my current PR stood with a pace of 8:08, I thought I had a chance to PR. I also knew I really couldn’t quit. I was running this race for Chris’ family. I quickly pulled myself back together. I then proceeded through mile 2 with ease (hey, it’s quite flat) with a 7:05 pace.
Then those GD West Side rollers came to play. Woof, woof, WOOF. I seem to have a love-hate relationship with those damn hills and today was not a day for them. I then thought that I hadn’t seen our cheer squad consisting of Madame Marchant, and His Lordship’s brother, which meant they were most likely at the finish, which then propelled me forward at a faster pace.
Mile 4 was brilliant—downhill and flat until you get to the finish through the transverse. I watched the clock tick as I rounded the corner and knew that I only had around a :20 window with my start time to come in under 30 minutes.
I crossed the finish and saw Jane, Jeff, Ali, and Vicky cheering and shouting. I gave them a sweaty hug and quickly grabbed water as my allergy medicine makes me quite dehydrated and I didn’t stop at water stop during the race.
After I wove through the herd of other racers, I met up with the Baker clan. Chris said he had a great race, to which Madame chimed in, “..Son, there weren’t that many people who finished ahead of you.”
As for myself, I came in at 29:02 (7:15 pace). I wasn’t planning on going sub-30:00 until I realized I might be able to pull it off halfway through the race. You never know what happens when you push yourself, right?
And then I saw this:
Oh, balls. That’s new. I have never placed in anything, and became extremely excited over all the work I’ve done in preparation for Kentucky.
You know what else is awesome? Every single one of my friends who ran the race, whether it be the 4M or the 15k, had a fantastic race and a PR. Many, MANY congratulations to all!
Special shout-out to His Lordship, who loves this race as it has a special place in his heart, and for also coming in 9th place overall (there really weren’t many people in front of him). Hats off to you, coach. You deserve it.
And much love to colon cancer survivor and woman warrior Madame Marchant for coming out to cheer whilst on vacation. Sometimes a little support can carry you through a full four-mile race.