Monday, August 3, 2009

Friends of the W&OD 10K - Race Report

Saturday August 1, 2009
It was the first day of August and it was going to be a hot one. The race was at 6:30 pm. The good thing about evening races is that you get to sleep in. The bad thing is, figuring out, how much and when to eat before the race. After a little snafu with getting my race packet because I was the last person to register online (it was filed by bib number, not alphabetically), I began my warm up and pre-race necessities(standing in the long line waiting for a porta-potty). The race was being held on the bike trail and with over 300 people registered to run, you can imagine how jam-packed we were. I tried to squeeze in a spot and was pretty far back from the starting line. I didn’t even know the race had started until the people in front of me began inching forward. 20 seconds to cross the line (glad this was chipped time) and then I started to try to weave my way through people. Finally the crowd started to spread out. By this time, I’m sure the temperature was approaching 90. The sun was right in our faces for the first half of the race. Mile one was fast, on a slight downhill incline (7:24), After another ½ mile we took a little spur off into a neighborhood. This had the only real hill in the whole course, and I was glad. Once back on the trail, I tried to concentrate on form, but by mile two (15:24) I had already slowed considerably. I was also beginning to feel the weight of food eaten earlier in the day. When we passed mile 3 (23:15), I thought the turn around would be at the 5k mark, but we kept going, and finally turned around right where a road crossed. Now I knew the reason for the spur, so we wouldn’t have to cross any streets. This was a water stop and I grabbed a cup and threw the water on me. At mile four (31:39), I was happy to see that I had beat my time in the last four mile race. It was then I realized that I might actually be able to get a new PR. The problem was it was so hot! My clothes were drenched with sweat. Sweat was running down my legs and into my shoes. Suddenly, I had a new problem. My bowels started acting up and I had to go to the bathroom bad. I started looking around, seeing if there was a place on the trail where I could duck off. I finally passed mile five(40:29). Focus on the finish, I told myself, then you can take care of business. Just 1.2 miles to go. I concentrated on trying to pass the person in front of me on the trail. Everyone was slowing down. I think I got by 3 guys when finally the finish line came into view. Sprint across the mat – official chip time 50:41, a new PR by 16 seconds! I’m inching down towards breaking the 50 minute barrier. Give me 10 degrees cooler, and 10 less pounds and I’ll have it. I liked the race, and I’ll probably do it again – some people were complaining about the fact that there was no Gatorade. One person was transported to the hospital in an ambulance, probably due to the heat. I wish they had 5 year age group awards instead of 10. I would have placed in the 45-49 age group. I came in 6th in my age group, 20th out of 157 women, and 80th out of 328 total runners.
Now to get ready for the 50K next weekend!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

TOP Challenge Racing Series

Okay runners! Here is your chance to join in the fun! The TOP Challenge Racing Series will run from May 1, 2009 - December 31, 2009. These are the rules:

1. Sign up as a fundraiser at
This is the site where you will collect donations and establish your goals. You will be entered into the series as soon as you are listed as a fundraiser on the Active Site. (No donation is necessary to sign up). Fundraising materials will be sent to you to help you raise support.

2. Sign up and run races between May 1, 2009 and December 31, 2009. For each mile run, you will be awarded 1 point. You can run any race in the world and have it count as long as the results can be verified via the internet. Miles from the running part of a triathlon will also count. In addition, you will be awarded points for placing in the race:
1st overall or 1st Masters - 10pts
2nd overall - 9pts
3rd overall - 8pts
1st in age group - 7pts
2nd in age group - 6pts
3rd in age group - 5pts
Deadlast! - 4pts

3. For each $1 raised for Teens Opposing Poverty, you will also be awarded 1 point. Your goal would be ideally to have someone sponsor you at $1/mile for every race you run. For example, suppose you are running in a local 5k. Get a friend or coworker to sponsor you at a $1 per mile or $3 for the race. It doesn't seem like much but it will add up in the long run. The more people who sponsor you, the more points you will receive.

5k - $3 sponsorship
10k - $6 sponsorship
1/2 marathon - $13 sponsorship
Marathon - $26 sponsorship

4. Weekly, e-mail me your race results at and I will update the list with the number of points you have earned to date. Challenge Updates will be available on this site as soon as I'm able to post them. Just remember some races take several days before they post results on the web and all races must be verified.

5. When your donation level reaches $30 you will be awarded a TOP Challenge T-shirt. Wear it at your races to raise awareness of the challenge.

6. Prizes, certificates and medals will be presented to all finishers who have achieved a minimum of 100 points in the series. Awards will be given to the points leaders, as well as other incentives based on fundraising levels achieved.

7. Special awards will be given to anyone who collects more points than SuSu Jennings, the TOP Challenge Team Leader, who will start the series with a 24hr run.

8. You may participate from anywhere in the world. Even if you are not racing you can accumulate points through fundraising.

9. For supporters who do not want to donate via they may mail a check to:
Teens Opposing Poverty, 136 Poston Lane, Bluemont, VA 20135
Make sure they note that it is for the TOP Challenge Race Series, and who they are sponsoring.

10. You can join anytime before December 31st. Just send me a list of races run to get your points.

Together we can join teenagers in opposing poverty and make a difference in the world.

Check out the website: