On Sunday my sorority, Kappa Delta, put on their annual "Shamrock" fundraiser for Prevent Child Abuse America. This year they decided to go back to a 5k instead of the paintball event they had the past 2 years. Back in 2004 I was the first organizer of our sorority's 5k. The event continued for a few years and then interest was lost within the current chapter. So this year I was very excited to see that the 5k was back!
The night before the race I attended an alumni pasta dinner at the KD house. We ate catered Olive Garden and picked up our race packets and tried to get excited about the upcoming event. The current count of runners was around 350 and we hoped more would sign up race day.
When Old Man Chalmers (OMC from this point forward) woke up on Sunday morning he realized his back was still hurt and that him and Honey would come to the race to cheer me on instead of running. I had woken up with a stomach ache and wasn't overly thrilled about running 3.1 miles but I got dressed, laced up my running shoes, and headed to UCF (where the race was held).
At 8:00am the air horn sounded and all of the runners took off. The first mile flew by and I was feeling a lot better. I checked my watch and saw that I had finished mile 1 in 8:10 minutes. I realized this was faster than normal and tried to ease up on speed for the rest of the race. Sometime shortly after my watch died and I was not able to check my pace or distance from that point on. The second mile marker came and I was still feeling good about the race. It was between miles 2 and 3 where a group of us began to run the wrong way. We didn't realize what had happened until we merged back with the rest of the runners a little before mile 3. I sprinted towards the finish line and saw that my time was 29:44 minutes. I have never run a 5k this slow and after further discussion with other runners that I recognized from having similar pace with me during the race, we realized we ran around 0.5 miles extra.
I was furious that I had followed runners incorrectly and that I didn't stay on course. I didn't stick around long after the race to chat with other KD alums and figured it was best for me to head home with OMC and Honey and vent during the car ride.
I found out this morning that I had placed 1st in my age group. Not sure how that happened but I guess I'll take it. They must have taken into account the extra mileage and calculated what my time would have been if I had run the correct course. There's always next year ...