by Audrey Perlow
I spent all week telling my boyfriend Justin how I was going to go
sub-20 at the 3.1415926 mile race as well as win the thing-so watch out world!!
The race was of pi miles distance and benefited the
local magnet science high school. Justin
reminded me I should wear my Maxwell's equations shirt. Yes, I
have a t-shirt with the equations that dictate how light acts. The shirt was a gift from a proud MIT alum.
At the start of the race I couldn't get quite on the starting line
because the local HS cross-country team (girls and boys) was up there
but Justin and I were pretty close to the front. The race started, I
took off around 6-6:10 min/mile pace, and I found myself in fourth (women's)
place. What what? I guess different people showed up this
year. Surprise to me! I stayed focused on myself and tried to keep
my brisk pace as I didn't feel too badly. The course was hilly but I felt
like there was more downhill than uphill (on the loop course) which is an odd
feeling I have pretty often when I race.
Around a 1/2 mile in I passed one girl. Yay! I started
to gain on the 2nd place woman who was gaining on the 1st place girl. I
also started passing, and would continue to pass, boys who had gone out
too fast. At mile 1.5 there was a brief tie for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd as all
of the leading women, myself included, ran together in a line.
I pulled ahead.
I caught up to Justin and I was super heavy breathing.
He talked to me but I could not talk back. He and I ran next to each
other with him trying not to let me ahead and me pushing the pace b/c I was
worried about the women behind me.
At mile 2.5 I was dying and we turned a corner, giving me a chance
to discreetly (kind of) look back. I didn't see any women. Thank god!
I did slow down during the last .6 as I was really hurting. I looked back
one more time when I hit the 3 mile mark and there was a girl coming up on me
even though I hadn't seen her all race. She had passed a lot of women in
the last mile. I hit the 5K mark and then the finish line at pi. I
was 1st overall, 12 seconds ahead of 2nd.
The third place woman asked if I attend school there-at the high
school-and now I love her even though I know I do not look like a high
schooler. The 2nd place girl told me that she and her x-country teammates
noticed my equations shirt at the start and they liked it! I said something like, Me, English major,
shirt is blue. She explained to me that
the shirt had to do with physics.
I won a pie, a gift certificate to the movies, a t-shirt, and
a metal medal that the students made at school. Justin and I agree
it was a pretty cool race and we both liked it a lot.
As for my time-20:54. FAIL!! Justin and I think the
course was a touch long, but still, blech. I have been stuck at 20+
min/miles for 5K (or today, for pi) for years. It's frustrating.
Justin pointed out in my training I never ever run as fast as I race.
It's true. I miss track workouts with my club every single week and the
hotels I stay in for work don't have tracks nearby. I need to do speed
work on regular running trails b/c I want to go sub-20 and it is not happening
no matter how many miles I seem to run!
Aloha from DC to all of my BTT friends! I miss you guys and ladies!!