The Allen Stone Run Swim Run has the most importance to me. It was the first race I ever took first overall and it will always be hard to not compare myself to that. Allen Stone was a fallen Navy Seal, and this race is always well put together and a tribute to the fallen Seals and Seals in our area. I’ve had so many different experiences from it. Winning the race completely, DNFing because I developed a stress fracture…having a good strong finish…then this year…not having a great finish but not being injured either.
The night before I didn’t sleep that well. I was nearly shook awake by my alarm when I normally wake up at the same time (5:30). Dad and I drove to the race and were a little late…they were reading off names of fallen Seals and so we had to wait longer to get our bibs (respectable). We got our bibs around 7:40 and for the 8:15 start, I did a 2 mile warmup and headed down to the beach.
The 1k run on the beach
Once the race was off, into the 1k run on the beach we went. People were elbowing each other and pushing and shoving. It was like post collegiate cross country. I tripped and fell flat on my face. Not a fall but fell and nearly got trampled. The rest of the 1k was uneventful and I just did what I knew I was strong at and ran…I ended up tying with the first female into the water.
The 1k swim in open water
Which shocked my entire body. The water, a cool 62 degrees due to upwellings sent my body into literal shock. I was very close to saying no way. I’ve had hypothermia before and even during my favorite race, it would not be worth it to me. I allowed my body extra time to adjust to the water and then started swimming. After that, I felt okay but the currents…being kicked in the face several times and my general unenjoyment of swimming kept it from being that fun. The swim seemed to take forever and seeing the orange buoy was a glorious moment in my life and I headed into the transition area to change and start the 5k. (Incase you wondered I was 16th female getting out of the water. Yes 15 more females passed me).
I tend to be rather calm in transitions. I don’t rush because then I’ll get flustered and be slower. Off I went. I think it took me roughly 1-2 minutes to take off my goggles and cap, put on a shirt and socks and shoes and get out of there. Seemed good to me.
The 5k on the boardwalk:
The run started off really slow. My legs felt like literal jello and they were freezing. I was defeated when my watch was reading a 6:30 pace on flat ground. I shouldn’t have been since it was windy and I had just ran and swam…but it is what it is.
As the 5k progressed, my legs started to feel better and better. My miles progressively got faster (6:39, 6:37, 6:10). I ended up passing 10 of the females and getting 6th overall. My final time for the 5k was 20:10 and an above 20 minute 5k will never really be something I’ll be overly thrilled with anymore. Not every day can be your day and not every race can be your race.
To give you an idea of how physically cold to the bone I was, I finished the 5k run in 85+ degree heat and was shivering from the swim.
I think part of the reason I was upset about this race was because this race does have a lot of emotion for me. I’ve won, I’ve lost, I’m injured…I had high expectations for this race and although it wasn’t a goal race it’s still no fun to not have a good race there. I’ll move on though and have a good race another day. I’m still due for a 5k PR eventually.
Questions for you:
What is your favorite race of all time?
Racing in cold or hot?