I was hoping to run a race in January. One of my goals for the year is to run at least twelve races. Running the Frostbite 15K felt like a good place to start.
Kurt and I waited to sign up until the last possible minute, though. We wanted to make sure the weather wasn’t going to be too terrible.
Wednesday was the last day to register online. The forecast was calling for 50 degrees and sunshine in Charlottesville, so we went ahead and signed up.
Then we checked the forecast for Richmond: 100% chance of rain. Oops.
Sure enough, about fifteen miles east of Charlottesville, it started to rain. It was coming down pretty hard when we got to the race. We were cold and miserable and not looking forward to running 9+ miles.
It was very nice to have a warm, dry place to hang out while we waited for the start, though.
The National Anthem was sung inside the school, then everybody headed out into the cold rain. A man (the race director? a random volunteer?) came back and yelled “Is everybody here?” “Yell if you’re NOT here yet!,” then he walked back to the starting line muttering “You all are CRAZY!”
Once I crossed the starting line, I settled into a comfortably hard pace. I didn’t really have a plan for the race, but had decided earlier that morning that I wouldn’t look at my Garmin.
By mile two, I was heating up and started worrying that I had overdressed. It was 45 degrees (I didn’t know that at the time; I would have guessed it was in the 30s…), but I had been wet and freezing at the start and hadn’t been willing to part with any of my layers.
I also suddenly felt very tired around mile two. I perked up some for the next mile, then crashed again around mile 4. My energy vacillated that way for the next several miles. Somewhere around mile 5, the steady rain turned into an absolute deluge. Surprisingly, this seemed to give me another surge of energy, but it also made me very cold. And then the wind picked up. I was suddenly very appreciative of all the layers I was wearing.
Looks like fun, doesn’t it?
Right around mile 7, I felt a sharp twinge in my right knee. I freaked out and backed off the pace, hoping that it wasn’t anything major. I’m completely paranoid about injuring myself again. I didn’t feel the twinge again, but the scare seemed to zap the last of my energy. The last two miles were a struggle.
I crossed the finish line and made a beeline for the building. I tried (and failed!) to open the bottle of water a volunteer handed me. My hands are completely useless when they’re cold. I grabbed my backpack and headed for the bathrooms to change into dry clothes. I was SO grateful to be inside. Once I was dry, I grabbed a piece of pizza and met back up with Kurt.
I ended up finishing in 1:20:48, which was about what I had expected, although I had hoped for better. I don’t think not looking at my Garmin made much of a difference in how I ran, but of course there’s no way to know for sure.
I was a little disappointed that I didn’t run negative splits, but I think that was mostly due to my freak-out about my knee at mile seven. My splits:
Individual results were emailed to each of us the afternoon of the race, which I thought was very cool. I placed 10th out of 41 in my age group.
Over-all, I was happy with the race. The course was great. I think on a nice day, it would be a pleasant run around some lakes and through some neighborhoods with just the right amount of hills to keep things interesting.
There were plenty of very nice and enthusiastic volunteers handing out water, cheering, stopping traffic and making sure we all stayed on course. I loved the hot pizza, but would also have liked a hot drink (read: coffee!) The race shirts were unisex, which means huge and unflattering for women. But I’ve pretty much given up on race shirts, anyway…
The results were up quickly, and I thought it was a nice touch to receive an email with my personal results. I also appreciated all of the great photos posted on the Richmond Road Runners Club Facebook page. I was definitely impressed with the RRRC and all of the volunteers who came out in such nasty weather!