Since I’ve gotten hit by the running bug, I’ve run a slew of road races.
I’ve done a litany of track workouts.
But, never a track race. I’m home for vacation and saw that my hometown’s local track club was hosting a summer series of track meets. To make sure I wasn’t going to be in over my head, I emailed the race director to make sure this wasn’t some series for sub-elite quasi professional runners and I would just be getting lapped the whole time.
Thankfully, being that this is Knoxville, TN and not Kenya, there was a huge range of paces. I ran the 2 mile and times in my event ranged from 11:59 to 20ish minutes. It was an extremely supportive environment with everyone cheering for everyone. People there ranged from ex-collegiate runners to recreational runners. It was a good entre into track.
I was a little apprehensive about how this whole track thing worked since the limit of my track knowledge is from going to the Trials last year and watching it on TV. Are you supposed to stick with the people who go out really fast? What if you trip on other people’s feet at the start? Will I feel like I am being chased?
Fortunately, my questions were answered when people around started to ask “how fast are you taking this out.” I said 7 min pace, two girls said 6 min pace (thanks, but no thanks), and the next person said 8ish (and so on and so forth, very diverse range). So, I figured this was gonna be an “imma do me, you do you” race, which was fine by me. Life is really just about instagram opportunities these days, anyways, right?!
I had a little support crew on my side though. Anybody remember CGT from 5K fame?
CGT has become quite the trackster as of late, qualifying for the Junior Olympics in both the 1500 and 800 (PRs of 6:10 and 3:03, respectively). She just turned 11 two days ago.
CGT so graciously offered up coaching duties for the evening. In fact, she made me warm up, taught me drills (“this is what we do before track meets so you should too”) and showed me how I should do strides (ADORABLE!), and then also had me cool down. She asked to wear my watch so she could run across the infield and call my split each 200.
CGT’s coaching was superb (per her assessment, she got me “on the podium” as I was 3rd). She was sad that I lost my hip number as “I needed to keep it since it was my first track race” and made me take a picture of my watch with my time for posterity, naturally.
To answer any questions that most likely no one has:
– Track is really fun. You should do it if you have the opportunity.
– You do not feel like you are being chased the whole time.
– Getting lapped is not as bad as it seems (I got lapped by the winner, who ran it in 11:59).
– Find a posse if possible; I highly recommend cute 11 year olds
And, to give you a perspective of how far Callie and I go back (it would include her ultrasound pics, but I don’t have those)…
TELL ME: DID YOU RUN TRACK IN MIDDLE SCHOOL OR HIGH SCHOOL? HAVE YOU DONE IT AS AN ADULT?
I can’t wait for my next race…
Until next time…