Monday, April 12, 2010

Friday and Saturday Cherry Blossom Prep

This past weekend I competed at the Cherry Blossom Ten Miler as part of the Charlotte Running Club Open Women's Team. Essentially, this weekend served as the culmination of all of my training since December of 2009.

Of course, the race was defintiely fun, but the entire trip in itself was a great time, so I'm going to fill you in on the whole thing!

On Friday, Matt Jaskot, John Compton and I all met up at my house to start our road trip to Richmond, where we would stay at Matt's parent's house to split up the driving. Matt and I switched off driving throughout the trip, so it went by pretty fast. John served as our reliable co-pilot, ensuring that we always had good tunes playing through the speakers. We arrived at the Jaskots' house around 1015pm and shared some small talk with Matt's parents. John and I were ridiculously tired, so we said our good nights pretty soon after our arrival.

The next morning, I jumped on Matt and John in their separate bedrooms to wake them up for our morning run together. After they groggily got out of bed, the three of us ran an easy four miles, spotted some white squirrels, and did some light strides. Matt's dad made us some delicious waffles, which I topped with some yogurt and fruit. Once we all cleaned up, we were back on the road, heading towards DC.

Of course, we ran into some traffic, and I don't like driving in traffic. Once we made it to DC, we had Matt giving me directions, John repeating what the GPS was telling us to do, and me pissed that we were still in traffic. Overall, it made for an interesting interaction amongst the three of us, but we finally found our hotel and safely parked the car on the side of the street. John used his patience that he must use on the freshmen high school students he teaches as he was navigating us through DC.

Once we got to the hotel, we began our trek to the expo, where we would meet up with the rest of our Charlotte Running Club team Ben, Megan, Danielle, Chad, and Mike. The walk was not far at all so we decided to grab a subway sandwich before we made our way in. Once we arrived at the National Building Museum, we were directed to the packet pickup. I spotted Joan Benoit Samuelson but was too scared to ask her for pictures because she looked like she was ready to leave. Megan and I did try on some crowns though. Not quite sure why they were being sold at an expo for a ten miler, but whatever.

After the expo, Matt, John, and I went to China Town so that Matt could get some authentic Kung Pao Tofu. While he got his food, John and I sat on a stoop and people-watched. I saw a man with a beard all the way down to his shins and with one huge dreadlock down to his thighs. I wish I had gotten a picture. I also ate a huge chocolate chip cookie because I was hungry. I hadn't had a cookie in forever, and I decided it wouldn't be THAT bad if I ate it less than 16 hours before my big race. HA!

Once we returned from China Town, we relaxed in the hotel room by watching "Saving Private Ryan." Then we made it down to the hotel restaurant to enjoy a nice pre-race meal with Megan, Ben, Dan, Val, Mike, Andrea, John, and Matt. I had spaghetti and a big romaine salad. Afterwards, we all felt like we had gorged ourselves on spaghetti and decided it would be a good idea to take a walk. I got a great picture of the Capitol!

After dinner, Megan and I discussed our race strategy and how we could work together. We figured that we would probably end up going out in 550 pace, which would be fine, and then try to hang on from there on out. Once we had that conversation, I met Jordan to give him his packet, and waited for my mom to arrive at the hotel.

I crawled in bed around 9pm, and fell asleep around 930. However, my mom arrived around 1030pm, so from that point forward, my sleep was on and off. Matt also came into the room a little bit later, and I had to open up the door for him. I wasn't too worried about my lack of sleep though because I felt pretty lively once I awoke the next morning.


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