It was perfect racing weather this morning in Florida. I think most of the locals thought it was cold (there were lots of sweatshirts, hats and gloves), but at about 52 degrees, I was thrilled. My last several runs outdoors have been in below freezing temps.
I also placed first in my age group, ninth female and 26th overall.
My husband finished a few minutes behind me and was counting women at the turnaround. He counted 5 ahead of me, so we’re not sure where the other 3 came from. I passed one woman after mile six, and she was pretty rude to me, telling me not to get in front of her and to stay to the side in a bitchy tone. I try to be a conscientious runner, and I was not going to cut her off, especially as the field was fairly clear at that point in the race. Her attitude made me decide there was no way I was going to let her pass me in the final stretch. I beat her by a good 10 seconds. I’m proud of myself for not snarling at her.
Apparently I’ve gotten over my hesitancy with passing people.
I’ve been kind of fascinated by race cheating stories. Just google “running race cheaters” and the stories are shocking. Not that I’m accusing anyone in this race of it, but there were several places in this race that it would be very easy for people to jump into the race without running the full course. The only timing mats were at the start and finish, as well as only one photographer that I saw around mile one. Because the course shared the first mile before the 10k runners split off until rejoining the 5k course around our mile 5, someone could have started the race by pretending to be a 5k walker, waited for the 10k front runners, then run the remaining couple miles, thereby cutting out 4 miles of running. Or more.
I don’t understand the cheater mentality, although there have been times when shortcuts crossed my mind — more because I was tired than anything else. One race I ran in Brooklyn had a woman winning a different age group than mine with what I thought were suspect splits. A quick Athlinks.com search showed her previous race times as consistent with her slower early miles and nothing close to her seemingly amazing second half. I didn’t report it, but it looks like someone did because her name is not listed as number one anymore.
(I’m not sure why I noticed this woman in particular, although I was looking at the various age category winners to see how they paced themselves. Or I’m super nosy. I don’t make a habit of looking for wrongdoing people. I was a data analyst in another life, so that habit is still with me, I guess.)
Anyone else see issues with race cheaters? Just curious. I suppose as running becomes more popular, it’s going to bring more types of people into the fray. I just know a false win is hollow.
At any rate, I’m super pleased with my performance, especially since my quads and glutes are still sore from Wednesday and Thursday’s workouts. I ran very consistent splits, which was one of my goals. I think I’m starting to get a handle on pacing, which really will be key to a good marathon.
I’m the shorty in this picture.