There are so many Turkey Trots around this time of the year that we decided to go against the grain the weekend before Thanksgiving and run a Tiger Trot. Those cooked-turkey hats scare the crap out of me, but tigers are OK. Not that there were many people sporting novelty headwear at this small event in Hampton Falls, near Exeter, NH (which seems like our second home these days). There was, however, a tiger mascot doing the rounds, as well as a priceless kid stumbling about in a fuzzy Dunkin’ Donuts costume that was far too big for him (he had to look out the arm hole). I don’t know what I was thinking, but I failed to snap a photo. You’ll just have to imagine the hilariousness.
Hosted by the Lincoln Akerman School, the Tiger Trot had lots of kids and parents, and a fun community atmosphere. I love these kinds of runs. There was a 5K and, oddly, a 10 miler, which was pretty adventurous given that this was a first-time event with a smallish crowd (although they had a pretty good turnout, considering). I ran the 5K, and Hubby the 10 mile. I don’t think I was mentally ready for another 10 after my last disaster over that distance (although I have run a half since then).
I would normally insert my customary weather rant here, but it was actually a gorgeous day for a run. My ideal running weather window is definitely anything between 3 and 10 degrees Celsius (36-50 F for all my American friends). Got to be sunny though. I’d happily run in those conditions all year round.
My performance expectations were high. After all, last time I did a 5K, I set a PR by more than 20 seconds and ran under 30 minutes for the first time. I just assumed that now I had managed that once, my legs and lungs would naturally rise to the occasion and let me do it again.
I made it through the first mile just fine. It was a lovely scenic course. I got distracted by a pond full of ducks and lost precious seconds trying to take a picture of them; you’d think I’d never seen ducks before.
On the second mile, I was hit by a wall of exhaustion. There were hills to contend with but nothing outrageous (although they weren’t inconsequential). I walked for a bit and ran for a bit. Then my IT band started to play up, just to add insult to injury (or maybe injury to insult, in this case).
I started to get really, really annoyed, which I’m sure was written all over my face (sorry, nice photographer lady). I got a shout out from the guy on the mic announcing runners as they came in to finish (he was giving lots of kudos to folks who had traveled from far-flung places), but I failed to return the fuzzy tiger’s high-five, mostly because I didn’t react fast enough, but also because I was too grouchy. Oops.
My time was OK, all things considered. I thought the distance between the mile 3 marker and the finish seemed conspicuously long, and so I was heartened to find out that the course was indeed a little farther than 3.1. Still no sub-30, but no shame.
Five more to go!!!!!!
The event: Tiger Trot
The location: Hampton Falls, NH
The date: November 17, 2012
My time: 33.02 (pace: 10.40)
Hubby’s time: 1.12.31 (pace: 7.16), 10 miler
The cause: Lincoln Akerman School
The T-shirt: White long-sleeved cotton
The aftermath: Fresh pizza made at the event, bananas, oranges, potato chips