Friday, April 20, 2012

The Joy in Passing Little Dogs and Strollers

All this warm spring weather had spoiled me. I froze my butt off at my latest 5K! Just a gentle reminder that yes, it’s only March.

I had barely made it under the wire in my attempt to do a race every month of year. I ran the UIVA Warrior Challenge 5K in Iowa City on March 30. Temps were in the 40’s that morning, but I was sure that it would be in the 50’s by race time. I had been running in shorts for several weeks and knew it would be too warm for my running tights. I opted for running pants and a long-sleeved shirt.

Before the race I went with some friends to a benefit breakfast and downed pancakes, four sausages and scrambled eggs. Probably a bit more than I should eat before running! I got to the Hawkeye Athletic Fields before the 10 AM start. Some of the people had taken part in a “warrior” competition that involved rolling large tires, carrying concrete blocks and then running the 5K with a 15-pound backpack. I seemed wimpy in comparison.

With overcast skies and wind, I was pretty sure wind chills were in the 30’s and there I was with no gloves or headband and just a thin nylon jacket over my shirt. I remembered I had jacket on the floor of my Escape, courtesy of my failure to ever clean out my vehicle! I knew I would be too warm running with two jackets, but I was freezing.

I stood at the start line and saw the usual suspects. Dogs that run with their owners, check. Kids in strollers, check. People that just got off the couch, check. Soon we were off.

Mile 0.5: First jacket comes off. Mile 0.82: Second jacket comes off. Both jackets are now wrapped around my waist. I can feel my butt and stomach sweating from all the layers. Somewhere between miles one and two I am rolling up my sleeves. Feeling really warm. I thought about taking my pants off (I had shorts underneath) but decided I had stripped down enough for one race.

Mile 2.2: A Cocker Spaniel passes me. Seriously? He has like 6-inch legs! I even got passed by some of those with the backpacks. This was my first race back since I started my IT band therapy so I wasn’t about to let my ego cause me to do something stupid. Nice and easy.

The dog had to stop for a break. Must have forgotten to visit the porta-potties before the race! We were now running into the wind, which actually felt good. I soon was over the finish line, happy that I had beaten the dogs AND the strollers! It’s the little victories in life…