I ran the 6 miler Dartmouth Natal Day Road Race today. It's a 2 mile course that you loop 3 times and has some nasty hills in it, including the last 200 meters to the finish line, which by that point is your third time going up the stinking thing.
Along with the hills, it was a pretty hot day out, hitting 25° C by the start of the race, with no breeze and very little shade. I knew that it was going to be a struggle, and I joked about being last, not thinking that I would actually be last. Not only was I last, I finished 8 minutes after the runner before me, who I hadn't seen since the starting line up. This race attracts a lot of fast runners, and the winner today finished the 6 miles in a speedy 30 minutes. I finished in 01:35:08.
I eventually figured out that being last is not the worst thing, even though it sort of felt like it at first.
Here are 10 reasons that made it okay to be last today.
- I got a personalized escort from the route marshal on her bike.
- All the people that were lining up for the parade that starts after the race become my personal cheering section.
- Getting cooled down by the guy watching the race from his front yard who had his sprinkler out to let runners cool of in a spray of water as they went by.
- Having all the water to myself at the last water stop.
- Having amazing friends who waited more then 40 minutes after they finished the race to cheer me on at the end.
- Having the announcer and time keepers wait for me to finish so that they could encourage me up the last hill and through the finisher's chute.
- Having an amazing and supportive spouse who talked me down of the ledge when I burst into tears when I get home.
- Even though I took walking breaks, I kept moving and ran more than I walked.
- Finding out when I entered my time and the route into MapMyRun, that I actually ran faster than my last 5 training runs.
- I FINISHED!