Thursday, June 30, 2011

Governor's Island 10k Recap

Ferry rides are a good way to start a race. Running this one was a last minute decision mostly based on being able to also volunteer for it. I'd heard good things about it - fast, flat course, gorgeous views - and I'd been jonesing for a race since Ragnar NY and the Brooklyn Half were like over a month ago.

A ferry full of runners is even better than the subway and the 360 view from Governor's Island was a treat. The course had so many turns I could never remember what was coming up next so I kept being surprised: the Verrazano! The city! NJ? Brooklyn!

It had a small race feel - only 758 participants - but with big guns behind it. A lot of people complain about big corporate races. As long as they don't stamp out the other races, I'm not only ok with them, but I like them since these races tend to be friendlier towards newbie runners. Also, since it was so small, it was easier to find others and I got to hang out for a little while with twitter dailymilers Linna, Mike, and Eva, in addition to the usual suspects - Michael and Steve.

There was a small festival area with a D.J./emcee. There were bike blended smoothies and a composting site.

Seriously. They were teaching the kids how to compost and the garbage bins differentiated between different kinds of recyclables, food waste, and actual garbage. Swoon!

There were no corrals so everyone went with the canine method; guess your own pace relative to those around you by checking each other's butts. It was all very friendly. I chatted with runners near me and found out for many of them it was their first time doing that distance. Some had done a 5k before, many had never done a race and everyone was very excited.

I was also nervous. The problem is that since the Brooklyn Half thanks to the barefoot bug I'd only been running one to two miles at a time. I knew I wasn't ready to run that much in my new no-shoe shoes, so I chose my racing flats.

I used to love them. They were light and fast compared to my other shoes. Unfortunately, my bright yellow Brooks Launch now felt big and clunky compared to what I've been running in lately. My feet felt wrong in them and it was hard to keep my form.

Though I generally prefer to run alone, I ended up tacking myself to a runner wearing vibrams and matching his form. He turned out to be the best running partner ever. I picked him up at around mile two and I think I was able to hold my form for the rest of the race. He was gracious about it and the miles flew by all the way to a 5min PR.

My favorite thing? First place finishers male and female got a real hand hewn axe instead of a trophy.