Thursday, December 18, 2008

Somerville 12th Annual Gobble Gobble Gobble 4 miler - My first turkey trot!

The Gobble x3 run was a 4-miler held on Thursday, 27th November 2008 at 9am, hosted by the Somerville Road Runners.  It was the 12th turkey trot starting in Davis Square, Somerville and the race proceeds go towards Project Soup as well as a scholarship programme for Somerville High School students.  

Once again I thought about not going, it would be just horrible to plod along and get passed by loads of people.  In the end I went, after an espresso - the breakfast of champions - which had never failed me in Italy!  We went early as I still had to pick up my race number and t-shirt.  The organisation was amazing!  More than 2000 runners picked up their bibs and t-shirts AND we started on time.  OK for those of you who have never run outside the US, you may not truly understand what chaos means....I am still marvelling at how organised everything was that morning.  

My goal was to finish the race in under 45 minutes.  I had no clue what my pace was, but from the treadmill it seemed oh so slow, I was also in the dark re the course.  Anyway, we started and I felt overwhelmed...but of the good kind.  I couldn't believe that I was going to run my first race ALONE.  Lots of doggies had signed up and brought their owners out for a run, there were also lots of strollers, single and double which was also quite impressive.  This is highly unusual in Europe - in fact non-existent, so it was pretty cool to see!  

I have no idea what my times were in each mile as I also seemed a bit in the dark as to what constitutes an actual mile.  However this did not overly bother me, I thought a good strategy might be to start out slowly (as it takes me a mile or so to get going) and then just run to enjoy it.  But one thing was clear: I wanted to finish strong.  So I ran along, with those dressed as pilgrims, those with tofu-turkey boxes on their heads and the odd turkey.  Ohhh it all looked like such good fun that I decided for my next race I too wanted an adornment of some sort. 

Well the race seemed to go up some hills and at around mile 2 there was a water stop.  Out of habit I stopped for a drink, which I didn't really need.  Then onwards and upwards.  Just when I began wondering if the end was in sight, someone in crowd shouted 'a quarter mile left'.  I speeded up, and ran hard.  On arriving at the finish, I was surprised to see the time at 41:23 (gun).  I was so happy and went home to prepare my patient and very supportive husband, a very nice lunch.  Imagine then my even bigger surprise when the results were posted online: 39:24 - with a split at 9:51!  I placed 79th out of 159 in my age group, and 1312 in a field of 2071. What a great race, and I'm so glad I went.

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