For those of you who enjoyed the rawness of my race recaps last year, you will be happy about this one. For those of you who are new to the blog, I keep it real…and/or maybe share too much information. Here we go!!
This Bloomsday 12K Run is a BIG deal in Spokane. I didn’t realize how big of a deal it was until the day before the race when I had 3 different strangers ask me if I was running Bloomsday. I guess a lot of people run/walk it: 55,000 to be exact. Crazy, huh? They have weird color groups that you have to qualify to be placed in with different races held in 2010 and the beginning of 2011, and they are VERY strict about NOT starting in a color group that is ahead of where you qualified for. You can be banned from running/walking the race for 5 years if you try to move up when you didn’t qualify for a certain corral. You can move back though. And that is just what I did since Steve hadn’t run any races this year yet. We just moved to Spokane last summer so we missed last year’s race as well.So, we started in the green group, and let me just say that if you are a runner the green group may not be for you. There were LOTS of walkers in this group. There is nothing wrong with walkers if they are near the back of the starting groups, but there is no point in being in the front if you are going to walk, right?
After scanning and assessing our starting group, we soon realized that there was going to be some massive weaving going on for the race. I started to curse the fact that I didn’t run that 5K two weeks ago to qualify for second seeding (the brown area behind the white numbers). Oh well. We were there, and although this wasn’t going to be the “fastest” run because of the massive amount of people, we were going to have a good time.
The time grew nearer and nearer to starting. People started throwing their sweatpants, etc. up into the trees around the start area.
I started to feel like I had to pee, but I thought that I could just hold it for the race. My goal was to run this thing in about an hour, and I tried to convince myself I could hold it for that long.
People were tossing big bouncy balls around. I got hit in the head with one. There was so much energy in the crowd. I kinda felt like I was at a block party.
The crowd inched towards the Start as each group in front of us started.
They had someone holding a WALK/STOP sign to tell each color group what to do. It was crazy!
After having to pee and waiting in our corral for 50 min and not starting yet, my bladder felt like it was going to burst. I kept teasing Steve that I was going to pee on his leg. The race started at 9 and our color group didn’t end up crossing the Start line until 9:25. It is a good thing we had timing chips on. After we crossed the Start line, I knew that I would have to find a porta-potty fast. Two miles in, I spotted some porta-potties without long lines, and I ran like the wind towards them.
I didn’t want to take time to line the toilet seat with toilet paper so I hiked my sweatshirt that was around my waist along with my tank top way up to my boobs and got to squatting. I was staring at my stream to make sure I was getting it in the toilet instead of all over my shoes, and thinking: Good job, Nicole! You are hydrated! Very light yellow. Go me, go me, go me… All of the sudden, my door swings open and I hear a guy say, “Oh god!” I let out a scream too.
Oh well, gotta keep running… The hills on this course were heinous. I looked like I was dying while running up them. The hubs would run ahead to get these shots. The hills were nothing to him. I hated him.
Here is the course profile if you don’t believe me:
Crappy, eh? Oh yes, I wanted to die here.
The individual hills weren’t that bad, but the fact that they were back to back sucked. In several downhill sections, I got boxed behind walkers. I was pissed. Downhills are when you should be monopolizing on gravity. Why walk??? Ack.
The last mile and a half should have been faster, but my legs were smoked from weaving in and out of the walkers and the HILLS!! I was pushing as hard as I could push it. I felt like I was running in slow motion.
As we rounded the last corner, the Rocky theme song came on the loud speakers, and I could feel the energy come back into my legs. We sprinted down the hill towards the finishline weaving our way through.
I was SO happy it was over. Even though this was one of the shortest races that I have done, it was one of the hardest courses I have raced. The hills KILLED.
I didn’t get to run with my Swift team since they were all up in second seeding, but you can bet that next year I definitely will be there. I can guarantee it.
I ended up missing my goal of 1 hr by 2 minutes according to the official time. Not too bad with a revealing potty break and being surrounded by walkers!
The aftermath captured as we were walking back to our car…
Thanks to my beautiful badass husband who ran the race with me. He could have run it in under 45 min if he wanted to but he stayed behind for me.