Yesterday was the day. The last day of January 2009 and I still had not run my 5k. That all changed at approximately 8:08 a.m. There were 3,000 of us gathered in the cold (yes, for Houston it was COLD) waiting for the gun to go off or whatever the trigger mechanism was. The P.A. system was so bad we never heard the instructions or the gun. I was excited and nervous and I just wanted it to be over. So we took off and for the first mile it was like a pinball game, dodging people and going around walkers in the middle of the street. That part I really didn't get. Why would you start at the front if you were planning on walking from the get go? Once we started running the weather was actually perfect. I was chasing a girl in a turquoise sweatshirt with her name on the back of it. She was my rabbit. We were running approximately the same time. There was a marker at mile one with our time and when I saw it, I could not believe my eyes. It was something ridiculous like 13:50 and I said no way. Then I remembered my chip time and I looked at my watch and it was 10:40 or 10:50. Yay! I was doing fine. I kept looking for the mile two marker and it never appeared. I thought, Man, we had to have gone at least two miles already hadn't we? And then my rabbit stopped and started walking. I looked at my watch and we were at 22:00 minutes. I can't believe I did this, but I stopped and started walking. It was just a short distance. Maybe the length of a house, but I broke down and walked. B. was waiting for me at one spot and I was walking. I asked him to jog with me and he did for a couple blocks. My rabbit was still in front of me the same distance as before, so I was okay. We passed the Toyota Center and went a couple more blocks and then a few more blocks the other way. We entered the parking garage and went down hill. Not fun for a person with bad knees. It wasn't too bad, though. Then we turned the corner and it was another long downhill. Yikes, when am I going to see the stadium. And then there it was. The "Finish" line right there at Center Court. I sprinted past the runner in front of me and managed to eek out a 35:45 time. I forgot to stop my watch until a few seconds later, but I was happy. They were telling the runners who had finished to sit in the seats so naturally I thought the awards ceremony would be inside. It wasn't until the stadium was almost empty that I realized I was supposed to go outside. Oops. B and I checked the times posted outside and man was I happy to see my name second from the top in my age category. I didn't see the page break and was a bit disheartened to realize that they had me posted as finishing second to last in my age category. Yikesers!!! My chip time was faster than the lady in third to last so I gave myself credit for third to last place. Yay me! I kept checking the times on-line yesterday and nothing was posted. This morning, however, the times were posted and lo and behold, I finished 14th out of 21 runners. They list me as finishing 15th, but my chip time is better than the person in front of me, so I'm cutting in line. Sorry lady. My goal now is to shave a minute off my time each race. I think my February race will be the Conoco Rodeo 5k on February 28.
Since yesterday was the last day of January and I hadn't fired up my longarm machine at all in January, I loaded a quilt on there and started the quilting process. I should have it finished today and I'll take it off the machine and it'll be ready for some binding. That was also fun. Overall, Saturday, January 31, 2009 was a very good day!!!