Tuesday, August 18, 2015

The comedy of errors 10k

I have amazing run routes mapped out - low traffic, shady, paved the entire way, sufficient places to stop for water, as needed, but after running the same routes for years, I get bored!!!! I've reached the point in my training that every Saturday is 10 or 16 miles, so it's the same route every weekend and it's sooooooo boring!!!!

On Friday I thought I should look for a race to do this weekend to break up the monotony! There was a 10k in Farmington Hills on Saturday that was still cheap the day before. Good enough for me!

I hate cutting it close at the starting time. I'd rather be there 30 minutes early and hang around waiting for the start. It started at 8:30, and was about a 30-minute drive, so I left home at 7:25. Plenty of time, yes?

I had forgotten my gps in Bill's car a few weeks ago, so I looked at Google maps ahead of time and wrote down the instructions. I'm pretty spatial, so I knew I'd find it. It began and ended at Shiawassee Park, which is off Shiawassee Road, easy enough. Unfortunately, there must be two Shiawassee Roads, or the two parts don't connect, but wherever Google maps sent me, it sure wasn't the race location.

After driving up and down Shiawassee, back and forth, I remembered a woman at registration had said I could take Grand River, so when I saw that, I turned down it, in the direction of Farmington Hills. Less than a mile later, the road was closed for an accident. Based on the number of police and fire and ambulance, it was a fatality. I had no idea how to detour around it, so I followed the car in front of me and we got back on Grand River.

Eventually I got somewhere near the park - the roads and parking had all been closed by that point. I parked on a side street, not even positive it was a legal spot, and started jogging toward where I thought the park was.

I knew ahead of time there was no starting time pad, that it was a small race, so everyone had the same "gun" time.

Unfortunately, I had to ask at the finish line "Where's the start????"

A nice man offered to help me. "Go up the hill, turn left, then turn right and you'll see the signs."

"Which hill?" There were two.

"It doesn't matter," he said.

"Up the hill, then left?" I clarified.

"Right," he replied.

"Right, as in turn right, or right as in I'm correct?" Who's on first...?

"I'll show you," he said. He got me to the approximate starting line, and sure enough, there were plenty of signs once I made the first two turns. By this point, however, I had given the other runners a 14-minute head start. Arggggghh!!!!! Based on the finishing times from last year, I thought I might be able to squeak into 3rd place, but instead, it became what it really was - a training run with a change of scenery.

Amazingly, even with a 14-minute head start, I was able to catch up to and pass some runners!!!! Out of maybe 100 total, I passed 12, and yes, I was counting :D It's the only race I've done - of ANY distance - that NO ONE passed me. I also managed to hit every corner and tangent exactly right lol

According to the finishing clock, I ran a 1:11:something 10k lol By my watch, it was 56:38. My PR is a 55:23. The course was gravel at parts, very hilly, and hot, so I'm really happy with my time, especially because I had only decided the night before to run it and still finished well under 1 hour. Heck yeah!!!!!

The winners in my age group finished in 53, 54 and 54, so even a PR wouldn't have gotten me in the top 3. Ah well, not this time.

I stopped on the drive home to ask a super important question: "McDonalds, are you still serving breakfast?" They were!!!! Whee!!!

As soon as I got home, I changed into a long sleeve shirt (for the sun), put on a hat, and with my belly full of McDonalds breakfast and coffee, set out to finish my 10 miles. I know that in running 6+4 does not = 10, but it's ok to split it up, as long as it's not an every time thing.

Plus, I got a shirt with a running goat on it - who doesn't love that??? Maybe it's a ram? Distinguishing similar animals isn't one of my strengths lol


  1. HA HA, LOVE this Post, I smiled through it all. Michelle, I love that you never turned around. When is your next race?

    1. hah yeah it's funny now, but there was nothing fun about driving around lost and late! Next is Chicago, but you know how the shorter ones have a way of cropping up :P

    2. Chicago, SOO fun. You have some of the best races!