Given that I ended up home and in bed after returning from Alaska at 12:30 a.m., and that I'd only run twice since getting the crap kicked out of me by the Crow Pass Crossing, I showed up at Whaling Days for the company more than the competition. Henry is in town and I had convinced him to run, I hadn't seen Mike in a few weeks and I knew he'd be there, and some of the kids on the Jaguars were planning to race so I wanted to support them. I was in a daze the whole time, woke up maybe an hour before race time, didn't get a chance to use the bathroom, and warmed up maybe a quarter mile. Brilliant strategy, I realize.
I had convinced myself that I'd just run slow with Henry and chat, but when the gun goes off I couldn't help but be pulled along on Silverdale Way. I just can't let high school girls run ahead of me, at least not yet.
So the start was slow but by a half mile in I was kind of finding a pace. I had let the leaders go to far to really compete, but I figured I'd just pass people and see what happened. First mile in 6 minutes even, and I actually felt loose and energetic after waking up. I passed a few more on the way up Newberry Hill and hit the second mile in 6:10. Then I tracked down two or three guys on mile 3 and settled in maybe 10-15 yards behind a guy in a green shirt, with another pack (the one I should have been with) in view. Mile 3 in 5:50. We turned to head down Anderson Hill there, but between really having to go to the bathroom and starting to feel Crow Pass at that point, I decided to just settle with the guy ahead and finish strong. I held my spot and ran a 5:42 to finish, and looked healthy and strong crossing the line. Not exactly where I'd want to be, I supposed, but not bad all things considered.
Then Henry, Mike and I watched everyone else finish, jogged a cool down mile toward the mall and -- rather than doing one or two more miles, like I probably should have -- stopped at a coffee shop and sat outside chatting for an hour. What can I say, I was still on vacation.