I haven't raced in a long time (the turkey trot didn't count because I ran it with my younger daughter). I had to get my head out of a competitive mindset to prevent myself from going too hard and hurting myself (again). I decided I was going to use this race as a test of sorts to see if I could limit myself to set a pace somewhere between a jog and a run. That mean to me to try to dial in the pace to about 11:30 and force myself to take a walk break of 1 minute every 8 minutes or so. Sounded like a plan that could work given my current lack of fitness.
As we were walking up to the on site registration, Amanda started checking out the competition and I joined in out of habit. As people were heading the other way from us we would comment on if we should be concerned with them or not. We started making a list of who to watch out for and I thought I'd share. Realize this is a trail race with the temperature in the 20s so most casual runners stayed home. So we figured out all (meaning us) should beware of:
- Anyone wearing a race shirt from a race held before 1990.
- Anyone who looks over 200 years old.
- Anyone who, while running, looks like they are going to tilt over to one side.
- Anyone who makes strange noises while running.
- Anyone who farts while running in the lead pack.
- Anyone wearing "senior road racing" team apparel
- Anyone who wears a singlet and shorts when the temperature is less than 30F.
- Anyone who breaks out spikes for a trail race. We didn't see any but someone running barefoot would qualify for the list too.
- People who appear out of shape but with a Mdot tattoo or wearing an Ironman finisher shirt.
- Teenage soccer players running in Adidas Samba indoor soccer shoes.
- Someone with an Olympic ring tattoo on their ankle
We ran out of time trying to codify this crowd and the horn went off. I ran my race close to plan (I was a little quicker than I should have been but not a lot). MY friend Lorie commented that I was running almost too easy and said that I committed a trail race faux pas by running with an ipod. Amanda said she started well, passing the 1m mark in good shape but twisted her ankle somehow on the single track section. It wasn't bad enough to make her stop but she slowed down to a jog and still finished about 10 minutes before me.
Maybe I should add annoying fast daughters to this list?