I was very tired at the start, and shivering in the 50 degree fog, after having sweated for hours in 100 degree sunshine just the day before in Petaluma (more on that in another post). I arrived way too early, paid my $3 race entry fee, and walked around trying to stay warm. Didn't know anyone there other than my friend J-Prime who was busy warming up too.
After the start, I felt like I was sleep-running for the first half-mile, but eventually got into stride. The field was big enough that I was assured I could always keep a runner in sight ahead of me so I wouldn't veer off course (though there were flour markings and a course monitor as well), and I ran fast enough to ensure I wouldn't come in last. I figured I'd do maybe a bit better than my usual 12 minute miles, but not much, considering my fatigue and the four years since I'd raced at this distance.
So I was quite surprised to pass the first mile mark at about 10 min 30 seconds. I continued to be surprised to stay on that pace through the second mile, although I was huffing and puffing quite a bit by then, and had shed my jacket. I even passed a few runners at various points.
When I crossed the finish line, the clock said something under 33 minutes, but I didn't note the exact time, and forgot to stop my watch right away. I was busy trying to catch my breath, and get Ziggy's attention as he just missed me crossing the finish line. He did snap this lovely photo shortly thereafter:
I was amazed that I finished in under 33 minutes, which is nothing special by athletic standards but definitely my fastest time in years. It took awhile for me to catch my breath, but then Ziggy, J-Prime and I walked a half mile or so to Crepevine for brunch, which helped me recover. I eschewed my usual salad for a crepe with fruit, whipped cream, ice cream, and Nutella. It was a bit overkill, but tasty. I napped later in the day, and felt very tired, but not sore (though soreness might well come tomorrow; must remember to stretch).
I've already noted several other races I'd like to do with DSE; I've already signed up for an annual membership. Next week is a 5K along my usual Crissy Field route; I was wary of racing two weeks in a row, but since I can walk to the start and like the area, I think I might do it. My next DSE race likely won't be till October 11, as I have the Bridge to Bridge 12K on October 4 and a weekend trip, concert, and fair amount of photo work in the weeks before that.