So with my tummy troubles, I had met with a nutrition-guru on Friday afternoon to implement a modified eating plan immediately. Since my long run was Saturday, I literally switched up Friday’s dinner plans. Saturday’s run had been good, but I was wondering – was it a fluke? Also, with my ‘healthcare task force’ last week, I’d slacked on a few runs and was still hoping to hit my 30 mile goal for the week
so I could eat swedish fish.
Here comes the Fort2Base race. My hubby was running it. My running friend Lil was running it. And why was I going to spectate? On an A-to-B race? In the cold?
So I signed up. On Saturday afternoon for the Sunday race. It was great.
Sunday morning came too early and we trekked out to the north ‘burbs to get to the parking lot. We got there before parking became a zoo, and sat on a bus to shuttle us to the starting line. We arrived at the start just outside of Fort Sheridan.
- I planned to wear: shorts, a short-sleeve tee, and arm-warmers. Hat ended up on my head that I hadn’t planned to wear during the race, but couldn’t bear to take it off.
- Cold – it would have been nice if they had some way to stay warm – heaters, trash bags, etc, that you could use. Everyone waited until the last minute to drop their gear because who wants to be in the cold in a tank top?
- Not enough port-a-potties. I waited in line for 30 minutes for a race where there were just over 1000 athletes with 9 port-a-potties. I know you have to rent some for the start & for the finish, but it’s the same number of athletes at the start, regardless of how the course is set up.
I was waiting in line for the bathroom when the start gun went off. Since the goal for this race was to test not having to go to the bathroom, it would have defeated the purpose to start and use the first port-a-potty intentionally. I went, I took off my sweatshirt, and I ran! I started about 7 minutes after the race began.
It was cold out – and now I’m closer to naked w/o the sweatshirt. I ran fast. I assumed I’d slow down as I got warmer, but that never really happened. I just kept running. And running. I knew my pace was closer to 10K (or 5K) than to half marathon, and figured I’d hit the wall at some point, and manage from there.
That never really happened. We spent most of our time running on the Green Bay Trail, which was pretty and shaded, and there were aid stations spaced out roughly every mile or so.
I stripped off my arm warmers around mile 4, and took an Accel Gel at mile 6 aid station. I got a bit PO’ed at the mile 8 (?) aid station when they switched up the water-gatorade order. Please keep your aid stations consistent! Or have someone yelling out at each of the stations. I would have wanted to grab some water, but wasn’t about to circle backwards because no one was yelling out instructions.
We entered the Great Lakes Naval Base, and it was interesting to run through that a bit. I’m not sure what I expected, but felt privileged to be in a limited access area! There was an out-and-back on base, and then we headed down toward the water. It was sunny & I enjoyed seeing a bit of the lake (and remembering this is the Navy!).
But what goes down must come up. And we had Hero Hill. I’d heard about this from people who ran the race last year, and was a bit nervous. It actually wasn’t as bad as I’d expected, but I did know my legs were a bit fried from the fast pace I’d been running – for the last 10 miles! I did end up walking a little bit to finish getting up the hill.
I did then finish the race and make an effort to come in strong. It helps when you’ve been going fast. We’ll see how the race photos turn out!
They had a lot of goodies for the runners post-race. I refueled with Gatorade, Coconut Water, grabbed a Muscle Milk or two, and a bunch of Lara Bar samples. Also some free deodorant. I saw foam rollers and mats out to help people stretch. Also met up with some lovely blogger ladies!
Mike’s parents had come out to spectate the finish, and it was good to see them and have brunch together after. We went to the Country Kitchen in Highland Park. I had a huge broccoli omelet, and sampled some really good corn pancakes.
Three days later, I’m feeling pretty good. I’m taking it easy in taper, but excited for a success on this race as I go into the Chicago Marathon!