Brandon signed up for the September 17th Mercy 8 Mile Run in Greenville and mentioned it to me. I figured it came at a great time for Sarah and I because we were scheduled to run 10 miles that weekend. An 8 mile race is somewhat equivalent to a 10 mile run since you generally push yourself harder during a race. So I signed us up. =)
We rode together, Robert and Sarah, Brandon and I up to Greenville, it was a nice brisk morning for a run. Brandon was instantly a celebrity, they saved race bib #1 for him, cut out his Daily News article and had him sign it, and took pictures with him. *Awkward* We waited around for the race to start and a few more people to show up. Turn out was quite small but it wasn’t advertised much, so that’s expected. Sarah and I started in the back because that’s just easier that being passed constantly. We’re runners, but we’re kinda slow ones.
There was a guy who was running RIGHT BEHIND US and I figured it was the ‘sweeper’ or ‘bike’. Since the 5K started shortly after the 8 mile run, we weren’t quite sure. But he stuck right behind us and uncomfortably close. Once we got to the 5K turn around and he was still right behind us, we knew the answer. Sarah joked before we started that we were going to come in last place, I agreed that we probably were since it was such a small race, so we were prepared for our fate.
Being the guy was so close, talking was nearly impossible because it would have felt pretty odd talking about personal stuff, or even life stuff, with someone within hearing distance. So we barely talked besides to say, “This is a nice trail.” “Which way do we go?” or “It’s such a nice morning for a run.” “Are we done yet?” And finally, “He’s KIDDING right?” When there was a guy who said we were at mile 5. He wasn’t kidding…. *sigh*
For some reason my Nike+ has a hard time calculating distance around water or trees. It told me a LONG time before now that we were at mile 7. I knew from our past runs to not listen to it, but I figured it was somewhat right. Oh no. It was VERY wrong. By the time we were done running my Nike+ said that we had gone 12 miles, not the 8 that everyone else had done. It sure did feel like 12 miles though. By it telling me that we were at mile 7 so early it messed with our psyche pretty bad. We thought we were much further along than we were for a very long time. At one point we saw our running friend Ben and his Dad who had waited around to cheer us on. That was super awesome and encouraging and took our minds off the length of the run for a minute or two.
We did really well though and walked once when we crossed the road because we had to wait for traffic, we walked when we crossed over a bridge because I was very tired, and I walked once more when we went under a road towards the end. Which is pretty well because if it wasn’t for the ‘sweeper’ guy being so uncomfortably close (which at one moment he was running in between us…) we would have walked much more, we would have ran slower, and we would have finished much later than we did.
When we saw the tent at the finish line we were VERY excited. It was almost over. =) Once we got there I purposefully slowed down a step so that I came in last. I figured if I were ‘last place Emily’ from the Quiver run, I might as well keep my losing steak going and finish last here too. Sarah, did the opposite, she purposely tried to keep right beside me so that we could finish together. I think that’s pretty funny. She’s a great running partner. We finished in 1:32:39 (an 11:34 mile pace) which is pretty good considering the 1:17 (12:49 pace) that I finished the 6 mile Quiver just the week before.
Turns out she’s such a great running partner that she got 3rd place in the 20-29 women’s age group. That’s a pretty tough age group to get any place in. I didn’t get a medal like Sarah did, but I did place 5th in the 30-39 women’s age group. We rock.
Last place Emily strikes again. (Although I really wasn’t last place in the Quiver.) Thank the LORD the Grand Rapids 1/2 Marathon is HUGE and it’s going to be tough but I’m almost sure we won’t be last place finishers there.