The was my second least favorite race of all time.
I don’t know why I thought a race on Labor Day weekend in Virginia was a good idea, but I did. My stepmom and I ran the half marathon relay. She ran the first leg (7.9 miles) and I ran the second (5.2 miles). Lest you think I got the “easy” part, you are sadly mistaken!
We got there bright and early. I saw her off to the start line, then I had to get to my spot to get picked up by a bus that would take us to the relay zone. The bus driver had no clue where he was taking us, and we had at least a mile walk to the relay zone from where he dropped us off. We sat around for HOURS. I made a few friends which helped the time pass. But I was struggling to stay hydrated in the humidity, and even just sitting on the ground, I was pouring sweat.
Fast forward a few hours, and I finally saw my stepmom. I don’t remember what time she got to me, but I do remember that she made really good time. I took off and immediately knew it was going to suck. My race basically started after 9am- so the humidity and heat started to rise. We started off on an army base with no shade and no breeze. I don’t remember a whole lot about the majority of the race except for wanting a breeze to come along and wishing I could jump in a swimming pool.
There was one stretch of road that I remember seeing a lot of people sitting down in the shade, and several others at the medical tent. Kudos though, to the race organizers, it was very well organized and prepared. They had these giant trash cans filled with icy water with a bunch of sponges in them. They handed runners the sponges. I promptly squeezed mine over my head.
As we got closer to the oceanfront there were a lot of spectators outside of their houses. I remember one little kid and his mom handing out Popsicles. Several others were handing out extra water or gatorade. Side note: spectators are awesome!
I remember the bridge of death and walking almost the whole thing. Once I got to the downhill, I decided to run to the finish, no walk breaks. I (we) finished in 2:55:54. I was the culprit in making our time so slow.
I knew my stepmom had been sitting in the heat waiting for me, so I went to find her. I found her laying in the sand telling me she was dying (she was not dying lol). We ate all our snacks, drank some beer and then went to find my dad who was picking us up.
Will I do it again? Sure, I’ll do a Rock N Roll race again. I doubt I will EVER do a race in the heat like that again. Pure torture!
Do you enjoy racing in the summer? How do you beat the heat?