Riverbank 25k Run Recap (Marcia)

Well, I ran my 7th Riverbank 25k  Run ( they call it 5/3 Riverbank Run now, but it does not roll off the tongue as easily…)

This was one of my first races where I was not nervous.  Not even excited nerves.  It’s still a toss-up if that’s a good thing or not.  I totally went into this race without expectations.  I know I have tried to do that a few times before this race, but it never worked.  I ended up putting pressure on myself- sometimes it helped, usually it did not.  I have dealt with some health issues for a few years and it they cause me to not perform where I want to.  I still get pissed off about it, but that does not change anything.  I could stop running (ha) and competing for fun (haha) or just wallow in self-pity ( as if).  That is so not my style though.  So, where was I??  Or right, race day!

When I woke up at 5 am it was already 64 degrees! Ha..the low overnight was in the high 40’s low 50’s so this was a bit off.  I was fine with it and really, what could I do about it anyway??  Nothing.  Just deal with it and go on about my business.  It’s the weather.  Run.

After seeing Matt and Amara off for the 5k, I still had over an hour before my race was to start.  I ate breakfast and drank water and took supplements and did all the other things runners do before a long run.  It never fails.  It does not matter how early or prepared you are for your event, there is a glitch.  Not a huge one, just could not find someone.  It’s actually funny, because something like this happens to US every time.  I might add, that I was not worried, nor am I complaining.  I might get worried if a little hiccup did not occur every time.   😉   My buddies and I ( Mary, Andi and new friend Charles) lined up by the 9 minute mile pace group.  I was a bit worried that this was too fast for me, but I was ok with slowing down if I had to.  Not worried about it at all this year.  🙂   And we were off!

I had to pee.  I had to pee BADLY.  In all of my years participating in races I have never used a porta potty during a race.  I just hold it.  Not today!  My whole group ( minus Charles) ran about .89 of a mile and rushed to the potties!  I am glad I did too…whew!

Things were going well.  We were keeping a 9:30 or better pace I think.  Mary and Charles pulled ahead around mile 6.  That left Andi and me in our Tough Chik uniforms.  People notice you when you match I guess!  I was really warm from the start and was really good about hydration.  I don’t think I did so well with fueling, but at some point ( mile 10 or 11) I was just not wanting to chew anything but gum.  I was happy to drink every 15 minutes though.  I felt fine overall and was not trying to break any records!  I did see my running partner from last years 25k- at mile 7.  I admittedly got a bit choked up because of how last years 25k went. It was really good to see her and to hear her cheer for me!

My favorite miles are the last 3 miles.  They hurt the WORST no matter how fast or slow you go, but the CROWD is crazy!!!  It’s usually mile 13-15 where I am on the verge of tears or hyperventilating trying to stop them.  It was really no different this year.  I made it until I saw a running buddy on the side lines..she was visibly crying.  She was so moved by a blind man running the 25k that it brought her to tears. Yes, I figured this all out while running!  🙂  I saw him many times during the race- it was amazing.  That was about half a mile or so to go…The crowd is sooo loud and thick that no matter how fast or slow you are – you can’t help but pick up your pace!  I did just that.  I HAVE to pass a few people at the end or else! So I did.  I also heard my name announced as I crossed the finish line ” Marsha Gragorjeski from Grand Rapids”, well he got my city right!  What a day!  See you next year 25k!

Overall the race was a success for me.  My butt cheek and neck performed lovely!  My time was 2:38:59 ( 8 seconds slower than last year- I had a potty break and several walk breaks this year.  Not too bad I think. ) But what do I know?!?!   😉   My worst race time for this distance, but I think I was smiling the whole race.  I had fun.  Who knew?!?!

I had to get Miles in this blog post too! So the medal was um, a bit smaller than Facebook had many of us to believe! I will STILL cherish it ( I guess). 😉

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