This year, Turkey Day started off with a nice 8-mile run. The Dallas YMCA Turkey Trot celebrated it’s 45th anniversary this year and I wanted to help celebrate.
Two days earlier, I had taken a quick 3-mile jog to keep my legs loose. After the first mile, I felt a shooting pain run through the outside of my right foot. Hoping it wouldn’t last long, I continued on my way. Anther a half mile in, the pain began moving to the arch of my foot. I cut the run short and began building a plan to nurse my foot for Thursdays run.
On Wednesday, I made my way to the Run On! store to see if they could help solve my painful foot woes. The sales guy suggested I buy a pair of compression socks to help the blood flow in my feet and legs. I knew it couldn’t hurt. I wore them most of the night while I massaged, iced and rested my foot. I really couldn’t do anything else. Worst come to worst, I could always veer off the course early for the 5K instead of the 8-miler. So the plan was I wouldn’t try breaking any records, run at a comfortable pace and constantly check the feel of my foot throughout.
Race day came and I met up with my running buddy from the Undy 5000, Sarah. We set a goal for 9/1 intervals and attempt a 10 minute/mile pace.
This was the biggest race I’ve ever done. There were over 3,900 finishers! It’s such a family-friendly race with all types of vendors from fitness companies and their sports drinks to a puppet vendor and bounce houses for the kids.
Getting back to the race, the weather was perfect – mid-60’s and sunny. Everything seemed to be lining up for a perfect run. Even the morning of the race, my foot was feeling really good. The energy of the crowd was really great. It’s really just one thing that I love about races. Everyone is so hyped up with adrenaline. It’s awesome!
The first few miles went great. We were comfortably running 9 minutes and walking 1 minute. Those miles went by fast. Before I knew it, I was closing in on the fork for 5kers and 8-milers. Since my foot was still feeling good with no troubles, I made the decision to go ahead and do the 8-miler. We weren’t hitting the 10 minute/mile goal and once we hit mile 5 Sarah and I split ways. I stopped for a quick stretch and continued on. I was more concerned with injuring myself then hitting any major time goal. I knew I wanted under 1:45 which was a pretty easy goal really.
The run led us out of downtown Dallas and back. Once we began heading back, we got some really great views of downtown.
This was the first race that I carried my phone on me…tucked in my bra. Surprisingly, I forgot it was there until around mile 5. This spot led us up to a bridge that had the perfect lookout over downtown Dallas. People were stopping to take pictures. I tried to do the same, but my phone decided to crap out on me. I think it might have had something to do with all the sweat it was enduring.
I hit the 6-mile marker and still felt pretty good. I tried to run a half-mile then walk a bit and repeat. I wasn’t concerned about time. I just wanted to finish strong. I was simply enjoying myself out there. It was nice to see the big, yellow 7 mile marker. I had 1 mile to go! The trail teased you a bit because once you hit number 7, the next half mile was all down hill. After a slight turn, the race finish festivities came into view. The only thing that was slightly annoying was I felt like I was running through the race village forever! I kept hunting for the finish with no such luck. I just kept at it and finally finished in 1:37:08. It certainly wasn’t fast, but for someone who didn’t really train for it, I think I did alright.
I actually really enjoyed this run. I thought it would be a lot harder than it was. I liked the location. It’s your typical Dallas run. The trot led us through the Main Street District, West End and Reunion District. The views of tall buildings, storefronts and lofts were such a treat from my typical trail runs. I appreciated the multiple water stations and challenging hills. I would definitely be interested in doing this race again next year. Maybe I’ll actually train a little better for it next time.
And just for a split overview:
A bit of walking at every mile really throws off my average pace. Oh well. I’ll take it.
Side Note: Recovery wasn’t that great. I stretched after the race, but my poor foot ended up taking a beating. After many massages, ice packs, icy hot patches, and Tylenol, it’s finally starting to feel better. I’m concerned I’ve got some tendinitis. Not fun.