SOUTH CAROLINA...NUMBER 33...SLOW AND STEADY WINS THE WHAT???
Well, I just wanted to run in a coastal town in South Carolina because I had never been there before…but…Hurricane Matthew had a different idea about what that was going to happen. Matthew was swirling around in the Atlantic, causing all kinds of trouble in Haiti, but the problem for me was that it was bearing down on S. Carolina on the morning that the race was supposed to be held, Saturday 10/08/2016. After a bit of back and forth from the race organizers, they finally called the race off as the evacuation route was one of the main routes for our race, no Bueno!!! Good news, though, we didn’t lose our money and we didn’t lose our Saturday race (the ones I love the most) they just pushed it 3 weeks!!! I left home on Friday 10/28/2016 at about 2:15pm so I could be down by Brian’s work before 5pm. Yes, I left that much extra time, because the Cubs were playing the Indians in the World Series and every single road way was completely jacked up. CUBS FANS BE CRAZY!!! I made it to Brian’s office by taking the most interesting (through all sorts of little burgs) route in 2.5 hours…yeah, that happened!!! Brian and I went on to the airport and were super lucky to get through in a few minutes and to the food court where we had a sandwich and some chips and water, water, water. Then I bought a cinnamon roll and milk for the flight. We were pretty lucky on the way out and back, because Brian got the super-extra-leg room seat in the exit row and the plane wasn’t full so we weren’t crammed in with only the 2 of us in our 3 seat row. We arrived a bit early to Charleston and easily and quickly picked up our rental car and our luggage, but the last leg of our journey was the 75 minute drive to Georgetown, SC. Though the Myrtle Beach Airport was closer, they had such limited flights that it just didn’t work for this trip. We were in our hotel room and powering down by midnight and I was up at 5am to prep for the race. I had a banana at 5:30am as I like to eat 2 hours before the 7:30am race start and I did all the race prep and Brian and I were off and at the race site by 6:15. We snagged a primo parking spot and did a little walking around. I always get the prerace jitters so I have to look around, figure out where everything is, potty, potty and maybe potty again. I have an entire routine of stretches that I do and I did those and got over to the start line for the buzzer and off I went. I high-fived Brian just after the start gate and had a fairly uneventful race for the first 7 miles. I saw Brian at about 6.5 after we had gone up and over 2 bridges along the coast, it was 63 degrees when we started and the mist over the water was just starting to burn off. It is so neat to see all the different states during a run and S. Carolina has a look that is uniquely lowland S. Carolina. Just beautiful!! I took a gel just after 5 because I was feeling puny and then started to feel underpowered and took another just at 7. My lower back and R hip had been giving me some trouble. I was actually diagnosed with greater trochanteric bursitis on the R (stupidly painful R hip pain while running) and it kicked in hard at 7 miles and then I simply ran out of juice. I retraced what I had eaten and drank the day or two before and realized that in my busy days before the race and hadn’t eaten nearly enough calories or drank enough water. By mile 10 I was out of gas and water. I walked for a while and then did the run/walk thing that makes you feel like you are making progress without killing your spirit. I hit the last 2 rest stops at 10.5 and 12 where I drank a full glass of Gatorade at each and poured nearly a full glass of water over my head. I finally crossed the finish line ended one of the worst performances yet in my quest. Yes…I did have a celebratory beer!!! Hey, 33 races is something and they can’t all be pretty or easy!!! We high tailed it back to our hotel to get cleaned up and out before checkout at 11am and hit the road to find something to eat. Well…apparently, the road between Georgetown and Charleston, SC is the black hole of dining, hahaha!!! We drove for more than 30 minutes and I saw something on the side of the road that said, “home cooked & good food”, but Brian zoomed on by. I made him turn around, because, at this point, I was at a serious deficit and so was he!!! SeeWee Restaurant, a total hole in the wall…excellent food and the waitress even brewed me a fresh pot of coffee, bless her heart! It was exactly what we both needed and Brian urged me to hop online and see if my results were in yet. I was reluctant, because of my poor performance, but what the hell…I definitely had a bad day…but the other 10 people in my age group had a worse day, yep, you guessed it, got first in one of my worst performances. But, you know what I always say…nothing makes a crappy race day better than winning first place!!! And here are the stats…158 racers started 97 finished. I finished 76th of 97, 27 out of 44 women, 1st of 11 in my age group with an average pace of 11:25/mile…slow, slow, slow…but DONE, NUMBER 33!!! Next race Dec 3rd, Delaware and this is the race that my sister, Peggy is going to do with me…HOW GREAT IS THAT!!! I’d better get my crap together and run a better race than this! The rest of the trip we had a fabulous time in Charleston, if you haven’t been there, GO…there is good food, good drink and great architecture!