Distance Series 20k (1:27.21)

I’ll cut to the chase here.  This was not a race I was pleased with.  I had had such high hopes that I did not achieve (as is life sometimes).  However, I had gone in somewhat knowing I may not be a good race for me.  (Also-no photos were taken at this race so you’ll have to deal with text…) and this photo that pretty much sums it up.


Let’s rewind a bit.

I’ve felt bloated and not exaggerating in the slightest but I’m currently holding in an extra 10 pounds of water (YAY Holiday cookies!).  Which is not exactly pleasant to run with..no matter who you are.  I’m not looking for anyone to tell me it was still a good time…for me it wasn’t and you commenting and saying “this time is still amazing” won’t really change my mind.  I’m still disappointed but I’ve put it behind me.

The only beef I have with the actual race was that there 5 porta potties for over 400 people.  Yes, 5.  Yes, there was a 20 person line to use them and they still started the race.  So with that, I skipped using the rest room and peed in the porta potty that was at the half way point (adding about 30 seconds…which is better than starting the race 5 minutes late).

So that being said, the 10k and 20k started at the same time.  The 20k went out twice as far and did a complete u turn at 6.2.  At the beginning of the race, I had secured a fourth place for females overall.  I was waiting (and secretly hoping) that some of the females were running the 10k…of course they weren’t.  We were all riding the 20k party.  So I continued to run the same pace and ended up passing a couple.

Around mile 5, I moved to 2nd overall female…where I stayed until I decided at mile 6 I had to use the restroom (since I never got to pee before the race).  Then lucky for me, upon getting back on track I was 5th place female at the turn around.  I hit the turn around at about a 6:50 pace (sans bathroom break).

The way back I also ran at about a 6:50 pace.  My miles varied from 6:43-7:00 the entire race.  (Except for my bathroom break mile which was 7:35).  The course itself was very boring, very flat, and very concrete.  If I had been feeling good, it would be very easy to PR upon…but thus…I wasn’t.   This may be a bit more negative then normal…I’m not complaining I’m just giving an accurate depiction of a bad race.  (do bloggers have those?)

The last mile felt like the longest mile I’ve ever run.  I was by myself, in a boring, frigid straight, flat swamp…and I still felt incredibly awful.  I just prayed to the high heavens it would end soon.  When it finally ended (meaning I crossed the finish line) I decided to lay in the grassy swamp bank.  I apologize for anyone I ignored or shooed away as I layed there about to vomit.  I cheered for dad as he finished and then we left shortly after.  Dad asked me how it went and I told him awful and it sucked.  After throwing myself a pity party, I got some coffee from wawa and felt better.  I realized it was just a bad race and time to move onward.

We all have bad races though and I’m just chucking this into more miles into the bank.  Sure I am upset, but people get worried over a single race and let it defeat them.  I have my whole life to run stellar races so I cannot expect every race to be optimal.  Duh.

Question for you:

1.       Have you ever had a crushing race?

2.       What is your most optimal temperature to race in? 

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  1. Ugh, water weight SUCKS. I always feel like my skin is about to bust apart when I’m holding onto a ton of water.

    However your illustration does not suck, it makes me laugh.

  2. OMG we really are connected and twins. Same thing happened to me on my race although mine was half your distance and a trail run and I also stuffed up on track the day before, I have been having the same issues and I have no idea why the hell I feel like this… and I HATE when people say “oh but that time is like still so good” well hello I was faster in 2009 when I did Little Athletics = not helping argghhhh ok so rant over, I need another coffee, although yikes already had 2… Anyway lets hope things get better for the both of us, cos yes this really sucks… 🙁 x

  3. Your question about bloggers having bad races just made my day…always love to read your posts, since your sarcasm and honesty are incredibly refreshing in a world where exercise/races/tris/whatever are always amazing and perfect and couldn’t be better…love the blogger world but would appreciate a little more honesty sometimes…which is why I’m happy I have your blog to read each day!

  4. Ugh- water weight is awful, and so is going to the bathroom in the middle of the race! That stinks. But thanks for you humorous review…. It was a nice read to start my morning 😉

  5. I think that despite having a not-so-great race, it will make you stronger anyways. Bad races make the good ones seem even better (to me, at least), although it’s always so hard to deal with. I can’t imagine running with 10 extra pounds of water in me. I try not to eat or drink anything a couple of hours before practice in the afternoon for that reason. It’s such an awful feeling so the fact that you made it through that race is pretty incredible.

    Also, “we were all riding the 10k party” made me crack up. You always know how to add some humor, even when you might not be feeling it yourself.

  6. I know I’m not supposed to say it, but hot damn that is one helluva a good time. But I certainly can understand and respect when it didn’t feel ‘good’ to you. Next time, girl, next time!

  7. Boo on that race, but you have a great get over it attitude. And I love the race picture lol!

  8. Yeah, it doesn’t help one bit when other people say ‘oh, that’s still a good time!’ Because it’s all relative, and if a time sucks for you, then you’ve every right to be p*ssed about it.

    My crushing race was my last marathon. It was a slow, ponderous nightmare. Granted, I had two injuries but I’ve never had a marathon drain and exhaust me so much. I ran it 3 minutes slower than my first marathon, which I barely trained for and was on hilly, bordering on mountainous terrain. This last marathon, on the other hand, was flat as a pancake and I was 8 minutes slower than the last time I ran it. 3:43 was just soul-destroying for me, and I just keep on getting slower every day.


  9. I feel ya on the “That’s still a great time” thing. Yeah, it is a great time for someone else, that is always relative… but for someone who was going for a specific time or goal or doing your absolute best, it’s tough to hear people constantly say that. Especially when they weren’t running the race and obviously it’s your body, you know what you can do when you’re feeling 100%. My last crushing race was back in July, I did a 5K on the beach and it was fine on the way out but man was it hard on the back part! Wind and everything and of course running in the sand. It wasn’t what I wanted time wise but I had fun with it, it takes the not-so-stellar races to make the good ones good.

  10. Crushing race… not really. I haven’t ran enough races, every time I run I end up PRing because my race count is that low : ) The most crushing RUN I ever had was me feeling super fantastic and then about 3 miles from home having my stomach flip and having to walk home praying I didn’t doody in my pants. I felt like I was near vomiting and contemplated trying to pop a squat every time I saw a bush.

    Also I am amazed you were able to pee so quick!!

  11. I generally never stop and pee during a race, it messes me up mentally. However, in 2011, I ran the RnR Vegas Half (my first night race) and fueled alllll wrong during the day. I stopped and peed a record 7 times. I gave up on trying to have a good race and enjoyed my surroundings. It made it such a better race when I gave up the goal and took in the lights!!

    1. I only have in two different races and they have both been recent. I don’t know-I’ve kind of let me go mentally that some races are not going to be Pr and if you have to go…you have too…I’d be crushed if I had to stop during an end of the season tapered race though.

  12. I’m still very impressed by this race with all of the setbacks and stuff as of late. With the sugar and the injuries and such…I am in awe of you.

  13. My biggest pet peeve has to be porta potty stuff. when there isn’t enough, lines too long or worse they don’t have them. I hate having to pee throughout a race. i think races where two races are being run at the same time (different distances) makes it super tough overall. Nice job though, I know you don’t want to hear that but you still killed it

  14. I hear you on the crappy race. My last race of the season, I got a case of the angry uterus. I literally thought about DNFing AN 8K (embarrassing to even type…) until the turnaround, when my uterus gave up, and I started feeling better. I’m pretty sure the only thing that stopped me from giving up was the fact that I was wearing a Mrs. Claus outfit, and “inconspicuously slinking off the trail into the park” wasn’t really an option…

    I’m a huge fan of cold’ish racing temps. If anything, I’m racing faster to get back into my sweatpants. 🙂

  15. aww I’m sorry you didn’t have a good race experience. That actually happened to me this summer… I literally gained 10 pounds of water in my stomach– no fun. And I can totally relate to how it really messes with you.

  16. Hollie, I am sorry about the water weight- that is terrible 🙁 But I’m also sorry about your race. I would have to tell the race organizers about the AWFUL idea of just having 5 porta potties. I ALWAYS have to pee before I race- nerves/ pre race jitters. So the idea of having to hold it for the first few miles sucks. 🙁
    Just remember with the bad races, come the EXTRA good races! I know your next one will be much better. And not going to lie, you KILLED it, even if it was a bad race. You amaze me with your running ability! XO

  17. The bathroom situation would have annoyed me to no end. I would have never stopped complaining and I would been stressed the whole time. I like your attitude and you are right, bad days/races happen. Thank you for not sugar coating how you felt about this particular race and time for you. Honesty is so refreshing in this day and age

  18. Ugh only 5 porta potties?! That’s pretty crazy. Oh well, you did your best with the situation! You have such a great attitude about the race. You’re not hiding the fact that you’re not pleased with it and you also are realizing that eh .. bad races happen. Whatevs :). You’ll do that much better for your next race!

  19. Wow, I would have shit in the bushes. Ok not really, but 5 porta potties is a joke!! Bummer about the race, but I like the optimism at the end!! There are hundreds more races to run!

  20. Blargh would pretty much sum up how this race sounded for you. Time aside, it sounds like it just wasn’t your day. I really hope your body gets itself sorted out. Also….*in whiny voice* That time is STILLLL good. *nosewrinklefacescrunch* 😉

  21. Going through the pain of 20k just to get to the end and find yourself disappointed is tough on so many levels. I’m an optimist, but not gonna lie — if I were in your shoes (I love your literal shoes, but I’m talking about your metaphorical shoes), feeling as you do, I’d probably be on the couch, with my legs over my head, angrily chomping on popcorn (it’s my happy smell). Nothing else to do other than tuck it in the “done” box, learn what you can, and rock the next one. Could have felt worse, but you know that others will be better. Meh. Write it off. Signed, sealed, and delivered. Out of sight, out of mind.

  22. Boo for water weight. 🙁 At least it isn’t bathing suit season, right? 😉 Your splits are still so impressive! Wanna run my next time trial for me in a few weeks?

  23. I hate when my bladder decides it wants to interrupt a lovely run I’m on. Those are the moments in life where I wish I were a little kid again…. only so I could wear a diaper & it’d be okay.

  24. I love the picture! sorry you had a bad race 🙁 I like to run in about 50/60 degrees. it is 17 degrees here now, so Im only going to the gym (I can’t wait for spring!)

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