Veteran’s Day 10K Race Recap ~ My Month of Gratitude

These last few weeks seemed to fly by.  I went from my race to flying back to Aiken for a family visit to full force work and wrapping things up before the holiday began.  Didn’t leave a whole lot of time for blogging and to cap it off I got sick for Thanksgiving!  Go figure.  Anyway, here I am now on the mend and ready to blog again.

First, if you celebrate Thanksgiving I hope you had a joyous one.  I was lucky to have my daughter come down from New York and it truly was great spending time with my sweet girl!

So, let’s get to it!

The Veteran’s Day 10K

The beginning

The day of the race I got up around 4:00 am.  Although, the race didn’t officially start until 8:00 am I wanted to ensure I had plenty of time to prep and get to the venue without too much stress.  The start line was downtown DC and I had never been to that part and worried about parking.  The temperature as I started off downtown was 29 degrees.  It has been a while since I have started a race in those temperatures.  Needless to say it was cold, but thank goodness it was sunny and not windy.

I arrive downtown DC around 6:50 am ~ and the hunt for the parking space begins.  Thank goodness it was Sunday and I didn’t have to pay.  After driving around for a bit and yelling down a fellow racer about possible open spaces (no shame in my game) I was able to find an open space, park the Subie (aka Scout) and wait for a passer-by…

I sit in the car until I see someone with a bib and decide to hitch a “ride”.  Basically, walking with someone to the venue.  Did I know him?  Uh….no.  Again, runners and Vets to boot ~ you just kind of make the magic happen so to speak.  You mind if I tag along with you?  The funny part was we talked about all sorts of things but never introduced ourselves.  A little weird, but what can you do?  About halfway to the venue I saw two women runners in tutus (I just had to look how to spell that…) standing outside a brick and mortar bathroom screaming “There’s no porto potties”!  Now I’ve never got into the tutu thing for races.  I know a lot of women like to do it, but I just haven’t but they were cute.

Damn….  If you want to spread the panic at a race, yell out to the world there are no portos.  It’s like yelling fire in a theater.  As I get closer, there is one lady standing like Wonder Woman in front of the other that is obviously…squatting.  Again…damn…let’s add ya’ll.  Damn…ya’ll.  Of course I’m taking all of this in slow motion…..Theeerrrreeess Nooooo Poooorrrtttoooos……. Kind of like watching episodes of the Million Dollar Man running.  I look at my new-found friend and he just shrugs as I start to feel a little panic set in and he says whatever, we’ll go on the side of the road.  Again, damn ya’ll and a uh no.  Why do you think my running pants are dark….  So, I’m taking all this in and I stop and look at them, really no portos?  After experiencing only one porto potty at the Vermont Half, I was shocked.  In DC, come on, no way, but the squatty potty twins swore up and down that it was so.  Hmmm, what to do, what to do?  Squat in a corner holding on to the legs of a total stranger or hedge my bets that if I click my heels three times there’s going to be some portos at the start line.  I just smiled and waved bye to the squatty potty twins and got back on the yellow brick road with my friend to make it to the start line.

The start line

To answer your impending question, yes there were rows of portable toilets at the beginning of the venue.  Literally the Holy Grail of Porto Johns basking in the early morning sunlight.  There I am a good 45 minutes before the race begins in lets say, 31 degree weather.  I tell my friend good luck and begin to walk around and check things out.  The race was well supported and according to the announcer there were about 2k runners.  I love the beginning of a race because of the diversity and energy.  There were all sorts of people in attendance.  A good combination of old, young and people in the middle.  Many people running for soldiers they’ve lost.  There was even a gal running in a flak jacket.









She was pretty hard-core.  Fifteen minutes before the race began they started moving people to the start line.  I was glad too, because my toes were starting to hurt from the cold.  There is always this moment when you’re standing there and you’re ready to go, but you’re waiting for others in front to get going!  Finally, we’re moving.

The Race

The first three miles of the race were good.  I felt good and had a steady even pace.  Around mile three my Garmin died.  I guess I didn’t have it charged like I thought and I was starting to get a little hot.  I dressed in layers and had to take my jacket off.  Then I started to lose a little gas.  I knew I didn’t fuel well in the morning and since it was a shorter race I didn’t bother bringing anything to take along.  The last half of the race was good, just not as strong as I wanted to finish.  Over all I did beat my expectation of pace.  My final results were:

Finish time:  1:08:43 with a pace of 11:04 for 6.2 miles.  I am improving and hope to continue.

After the race was plenty of food and coffee.  Very generous for such a short race.

Overall ~ a nice short race with a lot of purpose.  I was glad I participated and some of the proceeds went to the DC chapter of Team Red, White & Blue.

The race venue was by some of our nations treasured war memorials here are a couple of pictures:

Korean War Memorial









Vietnam Memorial









Me with my 10 K bling













Another race down.  I have been increasing my bike riding since I’ve been back and was able to pull in about 30 miles.  For November I have 56.60 miles completed so far!  Whoop whoop!  I have completed 5824.42 miles and have 5485.58 miles gratefully remaining.  I hope this post finds you thankful and with much gratitude in your heart.  I’m getting it done.  Happy Miles to You!!!

I always play this song on Veteran’s Day…The cost of our freedom is buried in the ground.  So proud to be a Vet.


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