Read, Run, Repeat

A tale of fitness, books, food, and life in between

Firecracker4 & July 4th Fun

on July 8, 2013

Were you all so worried that I was lying in the road somewhere in the middle of the road race course? 😉 No worries – I made it through the race!!

I was super nervous for this race – it was my longest race yet, plus the temps and humidity were high. I also had to wake up fairly early – especially with my body being in vacation mode – to get to the race. This is race #3 for me, and I most definitely woke up with jitters. I decided to have my typical protein/fruit smoothie for breakfast, since I’ve run after drinking that and been fine! P drove with me to the race, and we ended up leaving way later than we expected, which made me more nervous when I was walking around by myself (while he parked) trying to figure out what to do! After about 10 minutes (which felt like a million), I finally figured out where registration was!! I also met up with a co-worker while I was there, and we decided to run together – so at least at that point I had a buddy! I stood in line for the bathrooms, found P, Fiona and my family who had come to see me run, and not too long after the gun went off!!

This is, apparently, a pretty large race – 3500 people or so! The start is somewhat disorganized, due to space – my friend Kathy and I were standing on the sidewalk next to the road that was actually the starting zone – and after the gun went off, we eventually filtered in with the rest of the people as everyone slowly moved ahead. It was pretty cool to see all the neat/weird attires that people were wearing – for a little while, I was running right behind two people who were fully outfitted in Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer and a Snowman costume… and I later heard they finished the whole race like that! There was also a woman who ran the whole course in full firefighter gear, and several people ran carrying giant American flags. Honestly, I don’t know how they did it … it was HOT.

Kathy and I before the run!

The course was a good one, for the most part – it would through the streets of Saratoga – so we were on the main drag, and then through a whole lot of residential streets … and I found there was a good deal of shade. There were also lots of people outside their houses watching, and many had dragged their hoses out to the curb to mist the runners as they went by J … some even rigged them to ladders so that they didn’t have to hold them the whole time – genius!!! Although, I really hope that they didn’t pay for their water!

There were also lots of local bands/musicians that were set up along the course, which gave it a really fun atmosphere! Well, except for the bagpipes – I’m sure he was playing his heart out – I’m just not a fan 😛

The race, for me, went pretty well – in fact the first 2 miles went by fairly quickly. There were TONS of people, obviously, and the course didn’t really start to break up until after the first 2 miles … then you could actually run without having to zigzag around people, which was nice. I so appreciated all the people who were misting the runners – it was most definitely HOT and there were parts of the course where the sun was beating down on us. There were also a good amount of water stations – although, the seemed to taper out after 2.5 miles, which was strange – which was also helpful. But I have to figure out how to hydrate water while running better – every time I tried to drink, my stomach would start to really hurt, which would slow down my pace… that was frustrating. After 2 tries of that, I just dumped the water over my head.

Here’s the start! I’m in the bottom left hand corner – behind the chipmunk!!!

Mile 2-3 also went by fairly quickly, although I could feel myself starting to tire. I also had heard that there was a ginormous hill at the beginning of mile 4, so I was trying to prepare my body for that. I really went into the race just wanting to survive it, knowing that I was not going to be able to run as fast as I do for a 5K.

Mile 3-4 was tough. I was feeling the effects of the heat, and my body and legs were just tired. I spent most of the last mile saying “I run because I can” and “I can do this” … the last hill was killer, and it was huge, and I’m sad to say, I did have to walk for about 30 seconds as I reached the top. I’m not happy about that, but I just wasn’t going to make it – plus, I was feeling like I was going to throw up. Once I started reached the top though, I did start to run again! I found a little bit of kick at the end, and when I saw the clock, I was determined to finish before 44 minutes! I crossed the finish line in 43:58 – my splits were all around 10:35 – except for the first mile, since we were in a cattle drive. Not too bad. I’m not sure how 43:58 was my “official time” when I didn’t cross the start line until about 2 minutes after the start of the race, but whatever. I made it, and I ran it in under 45 minutes! I think if the weather had been a little less hot, I could have run faster. But you know what, I was super, super proud of myself. Only goes to prove, once again, that your head gets in your way before your legs are ready to be done!! It felt really good to have my mom, dad, and little brother there to watch me, along with P and Fiona … in fact, it felt pretty amazing. Their support meant everything to me.


And of course, I’m already looking for my next race. Most likely another 5K since they are more popular!!

The rest of the day was spent (after a nap in the sun), having hot dogs for lunch, playing mini-golf with P, and then having dinner near the water with P and my friend K … we also went to watch fireworks … sadly, they were pretty lame, which made me sad because I LOVE fireworks. I think I need to find some good ones before I can officially cross that off the summer bucket list!!! Even though I was kinda stuffed, we ended the night with froyo … all in all … a fun 4th of July!

Today I’m back to work and summer school has begun! It was a pretty busy first day, but I don’t mind, that makes the time go by quickly. I hope you are all off to a wonderful week – I can’t believe it’s already the 2nd week of July!! Slow down summertime!

How was your 4th of July (if you celebrate?) Any tips for drinking water while you run? What’s on your agenda for the week??


~ Brittany


3 responses to “Firecracker4 & July 4th Fun

  1. I so can’t drink water and run well either. I definitely need to practise at it!

    Well done on another race done 🙂

  2. sweetsnbeets says:

    I have the same problem drinking water while I run. Just a few tiny sips and I cramp up something fierce!
    Congrats on finishing another race!

Leave me some love!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: