Ah, Mother’s Day. A day for mom to be pampered with pedicures and breakfast in bed…
I’m not big breakfast person, so keep the pancakes and orange juice for yourself thank you very much. Massages, pedicures, and the like are soooo not my cup of tea. I suffered through a pedicure the day before my wedding and that was more than enough torture for one lifetime. Why the hell would I want someone scraping at my feet and gauging at my toe nails? And keep your damned hands off my calves! It’s just icky.
So instead of going the Hallmark Channel movie route for Mother’s Day, I dragged the hubs and the kiddo out of bed at an ungodly early hour for a Sunday morning to take an hour drive out to Ridgefield, CT for the Run Like a Mother 5K. It was to be a very a special event, because, for the first time ever, X was going to “run too fast like mommy daddy” in his own kids’ 1 Miler!
We arrived early to take care of packet pick up for me, X, and Christina (of the Table Still Has Shoes fame.) For a $35 race registration fee, the swag was pretty damn nice. This is what I had by the end of the race: a re-usable shopping bag, pen, nail file, and awareness bracelet from the Molly Ann Tango Memorial Foundation, a big ol’ medal, a Run Like a Mother (RLAM) Jockey performance tee, and a rose. And not a cheap supermarket rose, either. This one bloomed beautifully and is still bright and pretty today.
The kids’ registration was $15 and they got the same pen, nail file (what my 3 year old son is going to do with a nail file, I’ll never know,) and awareness bracelet. They also got a finisher ribbon and their own cotton t-shirt with the RLAM logo and 1 Miler printed on it. I don’t have pic of it because he wore it after the race to go play in the dirt at Mema and Pop-pops house. It is buried deep in the laundry pile.
The kids’ race started first at 8AM. The got all the kids corralled by age group. X was in the way back with the 5 and under set, but ahead of the babies in jogging strollers. He had some serious pre-race jitters going on and no longer wanted to run with all the other kids.
He started his race walking, gripping Jay’s hand, but about a quarter of the way through he finally started running. There was a promise of a cookie at the end of the race and, being my son, he’s totally motivated by cookies.
He was still holding on to Jay, but we realized that it was because he knows very well that he’s supposed to hold hands while on the street and, well, he was in the street. He’s one smart cookie. (ooh! a cookie!)
This is where things went wrong. The course was not very well marked at all. For the 5K, this was not a problem. With over 1300 women participating, you really couldn’t lose the pack. For the kids- especially slower, short-legged, noobies like mine- following the pack didn’t work. We lost it very quickly, then took a wrong turn and ended up coming toward the finish line from the wrong direction! Crap. I needed to back at that start line by 8:20 to line up for the 5K so Jay picked up the kid and ran him like a football back the other way and until we found other kids again. (Ok so yeah it might be cheating, but he wasn’t winning any top honors or anything- and he had fun so I don’t care)
Little dude really picked up the pace once we could see the finish line. X finished in 16:58- dead last in his age group and 304th out the 307 kids. Doesn’t matter though because he was very excited to have run a race just like mommy and daddy.
On to the 5K.
Christina and I lined up somewhere between the 10 min/mile pacer and the back of the pack. We were so scrunched in there that when the race started it took us nearly a full minute to actually get to the start line. 1300+ Women is a LOT of women. It is especially a lot when you are running in a smaller sized parking lot through small residential streets. The first mile was almost as congested as the Walt Disney World Half Marathon in January. Christina and I darted around like little Froggers trying to break out of the pack. Maybe we just plopped ourselves in the wrong spot for our pace because it was about a mile before we really were able to run without skirting around slower people.
We stayed more or less together for the first mile and half or so. Then we played the leapfrog game for a little while, falling back and then passing each other, over and over again for the whole rest of the race. I blame this on all the hills on this course. Neither of use was expecting them and we each have our own technique for handling them. She runs up hills to get them over and done with and then takes it easy going back down. I walk up hills and the sprint back down letting gravity and inertia work for me. Which technique is better? They must be pretty evenly matched as we finish in about the same time.
I finished in 32:22. Not a PR, but I wasn’t expecting one for that day. I was under-hydrated for as warm as it wound up being that morning, and I was very stupid and didn’t eat a gosh darn thing before leaving the house.
At the finish line, we were each presented with our medal and a rose and greeted by a crowd of THOUSANDS. If the two of us didn’t run with our cell phones, we would probably never have found each other, let alone find our families that had been waiting at the wrong finish line. They had stayed with the kids near the kids’ race finish, which was nowhere near where we finished. At the proper finish line, there was a festival area with all the sponsors of the race giving bagels, bananas, and other snacks and selling Jockey stuff and RLAM stuff.
All in all in all it was a great way to spend Mother’s Day!