Monday, November 24, 2008

"My roommate is hung over, and she's running today!"

This past Sunday, I (along with a few hundred other Twin Cities runners) participated in the Turkey Run 5k in St. Paul. This is the fourth year in a row I have done this race, so it has become something of a Thanksgiving tradition for me.

Lake Como with a dusting of snow on the frozen water. Does this look like a November day in Minnesota or what?



The Turkey Run is a very relaxed event; a "fun run," if you will. It is a great way to wrap up the racing season for many. You will also see many casual runners (and even walkers) just getting out to be active during the holidays.

And if you really pay attention, you might hear wonderful snippets of conversations such as, "My roommate is hung over, and she's running today!"

What I am saying is that the Turkey Run is for everyone; from hardcore runners, to novice joggers, and even those of questionable sobriety. :)

We were greeted with a relatively mild day, roughly 33 degrees at race time with gray, overcast skies. There was still some remaining patches of the dusting of snow we received Saturday, and Lake Como was just about frozen over. While mild and not that cold, it was also quite humid with a decent breeze, making it feel colder than it really was.

(Incidentally, I think the weather is like this every year. Every Turkey Run I have done, I recall the day being overcast, chilly, and gray. It is a sign that winter is just about upon us, I guess!)

A clumsy self portrait of yours truly at the Turkey Run



The course is the same as always; leave Como Lake Elementary School, run north on East Como Lake Drive, then turn around and run a clockwise loop of the trails around Lake Como. It is a scenic and fast course.

The race started, and we were off like a shot. It was a relatively clean and fast start. I made sure not to get boxed in by anyone that seemed hung over! :)

Settling in at a pretty brisk clip, I felt very good and comfortable the whole time. Actually, I also felt efficient, which is a really nice feeling to have at a race.

Even though I was exerting a lot of energy, there was a certain sense of effortlessness. I even had a nice kick at the finish, passing a couple of folks in the last quarter mile, and I crossed the finish line in 21:58 (results here).

This was a very good 5k time for me. There have only been a few occasions where I have gone under 22 minutes. Considering I don't really train to be fast, the race was quite satisfying.

Perhaps I owe this performance to my pre-race meal of spaghetti with homemade meatballs? Mmmmmm....meatballs! :)



And, with that, another racing season comes to a close. It was a fun a memorable year with 11 more races in the books; some new adventures, a few really challenging races, some extremely rewarding races, and just a lot of fun overall.

In a sense it is sad to see the year end. However, part of the fun with the 2008 season ending is that I now get to start all over again and plan for a new season in 2009!

I am heading up to Mom and Dad's on Tuesday for a little vacation over the holiday, so this will be my last post until I get back next week.

I want to wish you all a happy, safe, and memorable Thanksgiving!

Until next time,

Jean
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