Saturday, September 17, 2011

Athleta Iron Girl 10K - Seattle

In the midst of it all, I have completed another 10K race.  On 9/11/11, I ran the Athleta Iron Girl 10K in Seattle. This race was slow and steady and very easy.  The best part was running with my bestest friend in the world, Joanna.

The race was in Seattle so I had to make another trek across the state, alone.  But it's all good, I had my tunes with me.  (Are you surprised that my iPhone cover is not purple?)

The wind turbines along I-90 before and after Ellensburg always amaze me.

I arrived in Seattle on Saturday about 5:30 after stopping at the Factory Outlets in North Bend for a new Coach purse.

We promptly left for Alki Beach where we enjoyed some carbs on the sand and watched the sunset.  It was gorgeous.

We got back to the house around 10:00 p.m. and planned to go straight to bed.  I spent the next half hour texting with my husband and organizing my race gear.  Just as I closed the door to head to bed, I noticed I was not alone. 

Seriously, I am afraid of spiders, I've mentioned this before.  Usually I tell myself I just don't like them, but I was reminded that I am actually afraid of them.  I could not kill this thing and I was shaking with fear.  Luckily it wasn't moving, it was just hanging out in the corner.  I was texting my husband who was trying to coach me through killing it, but I could not do it.  My friend's husband was out having dinner with some family and I kept wishing for him to get home.  Finally, about 40 minutes after the original spotting of the beast, just as I was about to put on my shoes and socks (and headphones, I can't hear any crunching of bugs) to head into battle, the husband arrived.  My hero!  And would you believe he picked the thing up with his BARE HANDS and proceeded to talk to me for 20 minutes holding it in his hand?!  I was freaking out!  I cannot even imagine touching a spider, ewwww!!  Anyway, I finally went to bed at midnight and my alarm was set for 5:30 a.m.

Long about 3:30 a.m. I woke up.  Wide awake.  And I could not go back to sleep for anything.  Pre-race nerves again!  I passed the time by reading blogs on my iPhone and listening to music.  Finally it was time to actually get up, get dressed, eat the usual pre-race breakfast (English muffin, peanut butter, banana, and one cup of coffee) and then we were off.

The Athleta Iron Girl 10K was being held at Greenlake Park.  Greenlake is a beautiful lake that is surrounded by a paved trail that is approximately 3 miles long.  It's a popular place for the locals to get their run or walk on.  I was a little concerned about how the crowd would be managed on the trail.  I remembered the half marathon which was also on a paved trail that was way to narrow for all the runners, and the local people just out for their Sunday run or walk were kind of annoyed.  For this event, I was happily surprised to see that we would be running mostly on the road surrounding the lake- not as narrow as the trail and not displacing the locals.

We quickly picked up our packets and then walked around the expo.  Neither of us found anything we couldn't live without so we made our way back to the car to drop off our bags before the race started.  Then the fun began: the line for the bathroom.  It was clear we would not make it through the line.  They had a lot of toilets, but there were also a lot of women and the line was so long!  I had seen a Starbucks across the street so we decided to head over there.  The line was incredibly long there too, but seemed more manageable.  As we were standing there, we saw some people fiddling with the timing tags on their shoes.  TIMING TAGS!  We totally forgot to put them on.  Joanna offered to run back to the car and get them and I stayed in the line.  She returned fairly quickly and we affixed the tags.  If looks could kill, we would be dead because the girl behind us in line was not happy that Joanna came back and took her place in line.  Tough!

Finally we made our way through the line and then made our way back to the race start and lined up.  We lined up between the 10:00-11:00 minute pace markers.  My plan going into this race was to stay together and have fun.  Of course I wanted to beat my last 10K time which was 1:09 and some seconds, but if I didn't, I was okay with that too.  It wasn't the same course as my last 10K and for me, a true PR is a faster time on the same course. 

The countdown to the start began and we were off.  We took off slow and steady.  The crowd was pretty tight in the beginning and I was seriously annoyed that people were walking!  Why oh why can't people be courteous and line up where they should if they are a walker?  Oh well, we made our way around those people and it was fairly smooth running from then on.  Greenlake is so pretty and the course was very flat.  When we completed our first loop, it was a little disheartening to think we had to run the same way again.  I don't love repeat loops or out and backs, but I waved to the finish line and kept running.

Garmin and it was 1:08 or so.  I felt great and was happy with that time.  Once across the finish line we picked up our medals and grabbed some water bottles which were ice cold and wonderful!!  We made our way through the breakfast line which turned out to be a yogurt, Fuze drink, and breakfast burrito which was kinda nasty.  They also gave us some Muscle Milk and Ironman drink.  I only drank water, though.  Great Harvest Bread Co. was one of the sponsors and they had wonderful wheat rolls. I could have eaten about 20 of them!   

We had lots of fun with this race. We tried to smile and wave at all the photographers and just enjoyed the run.  The event was very well organized with plenty of swag and water. They even had a table set up where you could get a printout of your official results-usually I have to wait for the official results to appear online.  My time was 1:07:24 and Joanna's was 1:07:25, but I could swear she crossed the finish line first (see next photo).  The finisher's medal is simply awesome and such a nice treat at a 10K. Awards were also given to the first three finishers in each age group which was so nice.  There were winners ranging in age from about 11 up to 82!

10K is officially my favorite distance.  It's a challenge, but you don't have to spend hours and hours training.  The race itself is fast and you walk away feeling like you've accomplished a great thing.  I couldn't have been happier to complete this race with Joanna. My favorite event to date!


  1. What a fun event! Glad you enjoyed yourself. I want to do a race that gives out medals some day. :)

  2. The only good spider is a dead one. ***shudder***

  3. They need more 10K's around my area that give our medals...just sayin. :-) :-)

    Congrats on a great race!!!!!!!!!!!!

    (Did you maybe cross the starting line a little ahead of her? Were there two starting mats, and maybe your tags registered on different ones?)