The best first, The Detroit Turkey Trot. This was my second year running the Trot. Last year was my first 10k and I didn't get an official time due to arriving after the gate was shut off. I know it was over an hour, so my goal for the next 10k was to break that. I did that at Run the Pointe a few months back with a 58:40. I managed to set a new PR at 57:26.
Its a love/hate relationship with this race. I love the pre-emptive attack on my calorie intake. I love running around downtown. I love bumping into others that I know and since I've started to make make friends online, its nice that I may be able to meetup with them at a race like the Trot. I hate that it costs so much (but its for The Parade Co, so I can't get too upset about that). I hate the traffic getting down there and the parking (I consider myself seasoned at parking downtown, yet this day drives me crazy). I hate risking my ankles on Michigan Ave (busted bricks and patches of asphalt). And probably most of all I hate the 'bob and weave' of the first 1-2 miles.
I should have registered for the wave in front of me. My 'Dasher' wave was for 9:30-11:00 pacers and I knew I wanted to be no slower than 9:30. I couldn't get to the front of the corral either, making matters worse. What I couldn't believe, though were the amount of walkers I had to pass, even with the waves separated by pace. I ended up following another person's lead, by hitting the sidewalks until I hit Woodward. I must of passed 1,000 people in that first mile. Once the 5k and 10k split, it gets better, so long as you watch your step. Michigan Ave is an ankle buster if you don't watch out. I ran the turning lane and the bike lane to avoid the loose red bricks.
After the first 2 miles, the race went pretty fast. I still was weaving through runners. My favorite are the abrupt stoppers. I felt like a runningback at times. Okay, enough bitterness.
Around mile 5 I overheard someone nearby tell their friend that they were at about 8:45 pace. Feeling alright, except for my knees, I decided to kick it up for the final mile. In the .25 or so, my stomach started to act up. I kind of felt like I was going to heave, and I was sort of happy in a sick sense. Back in CC, if I didn't cross the finish line and head straight to a tree or fence to hurl, I knew I didn't run hard enough. Its been 10 years since I've felt like that.
Distance runners are a strange breed, no?
One more 'love'... the costumes. No wait two, and the dogs. I didn't bring Buddy this year (another post), but I saw so many others. I missed the costume contest (again, traffic), but I did see a few great ones and a few crazy ones. I witness quite a few people in Vibrams going, the 'barefoot' route. Then I saw the ultimate minimalist runner, a man running barefoot. Really barefoot. He was wearing nothing but a pair of shorts and some bandage wrapped around the ball of his feet. That's insane!
The funniest costume, however goes out to the group of "Occupy Sesame Street" protesters.