Saturday, December 29, 2012

Washington DC Undy 5000!

Now that I'm finally done my Europe posts, I can catch up on a couple other things I've been up to in the past few months. In late September (the day after I got back from Oklahoma), Mark and I ran a 5k that I've been wanting to do for a while: the Washington DC Undy 5000! The proceeds from the race go to help fund colorectal cancer screening tests to people who otherwise couldn't afford them, and since my mom had colorectal cancer a few years ago it's a charity that I really respect. The race was an absolute blast and I'm hoping to run it again next year. 

The weather on race day was great and we got to the check-in with plenty of time to spare. We picked up our packet (complete with race boxers instead of a race shirt) and had fun watching other people show up. You're encouraged to dress silly for the race, and plenty of people took advantage of that.

Some people brought their dogs. This one got his own pair of undies.

I took this just before the race started. There wasn't a start gun or anything; people just started running and apparently the race started. Oops!

The course was really pretty; it was an out-and-back through Rock Creek Park in NW DC. It was all downhill until the turnaround, then the second half was uphill, which was a little brutal. I decided to run this one without a watch and just wing it since I was really running it for fun. I started out toward the back and fairly slow, but once I realized that it was downhill I figured screw it and started flying down the hill.

I think I had just passed the mile mark when I saw Mark heading back up the hill. I made it to the turnaround a few minutes later and started working my way back uphill. I was still feeling good, but I was surprised by how many people were behind me. I'm usually the one near the back of the pack! I only had to take a couple walk breaks toward the end, but I kept my pace up pretty well. Since Mark finished crazy early (20:58 - he got 9th place in the entire race!) he came back to run the last little bit with me, and I made it across the finish line in 30:29 - at a 9:49 per mile average pace, that was a definite PR for me! I wound up coming in 9th or 10th in my age group, which was awesome.

The finish line, shortly after I could breathe again. I tried so hard to pass someone on the final stretch but just couldn't get past her. It took a few minutes of pacing around to feel like I wasn't going to toss my cookies after that.

My race outfit, complete with Cookie Monster undies. I was one of only two girls with the nerve to wear a bra, too. It was pretty sweet, though...everyone loved my outfit, so all sorts of people on the sidelines cheered me on as I went past. And since the park wasn't closed during the race, I also had several guys on bikes say 'Nice...' as I ran past. I may start dressing like this for all of my races.

We hung out for a little while longer, but since Mark had to work that night we made our way back home. We did at least leave time for a post-race breakfast at the Corner Deli, though.

Our official race picture. I wonder if I can convince Mark to wear a bra next year...

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