Saturday, December 15, 2007

The Celtic Solstice 5 Miler

The Celtic Solstice 5 miler has become a Baltimore tradition in a very short period of time. It it held in the Druid Hill Park in Baltimore. This year instead of a T-Shirt we received a very nice jacket. It was a great perk since today turned out rather chilly.

My friend Zina called me yesterday and claimed to be directionally retarded and needed a ride. So she showed up at the house this morning at 620 am so that we could make the trek north. Driving in the DC/Baltimore area can be somewhat time consuming. So even though the race was about 50 miles away I was taking no chances that we would make it there for the 830 start. We made it in a little over an hour, find a good place to park, got on the bus and finally hit the starting area. Packet pickup was efficient and soon we were ready to race--with 30 minutes left until start time. So we chatted with some other DC-Tri Clubbers and finally the race started.

The first mile of the race was uphill with a total elevation gain of 150 feet in the first 1.25 miles. I started off pretty well and was passing quite a few people until my left shoe started to come untied. I stopped to tie it back and my hands where so cold it must have taken 30 seconds or so. Then I tried to play catch up, but I decided just to just find a nice rhythm and run. Not more than 3 mintues later it start to come untied again. So my wooden fingers slowly retied my shoes and off I went.

The run was uneventful at this point, and we hit the aid station at (I am guessing) mile 2.5. I did not take any water and I kept on trucking. Not a 1/2 mile after the aid station my RIGHT shoe came untied. I really had to tie it--my car key was laced on it. That wasted another 30 seconds or so and finally I was off again.

Miles 3-4 were around the lake and I ran into my friend Brooke, who I haven't seen since July. We chatted a little and the chatting gave me some energy to pick up the pace. She said she could not keep up that pace as we hit mile 4 and I convinced her to keep running--it was only another mile. We finished the loop around the lake, made a right turn and started down the hill we had run up earlier. This allowed me to really pick up the pace and I ran the last mile just under 8 minutes sprinting the last 200 yds or so. It felt really good. The offical results haven't been posted yet, but according to my Garmin, my total time was 44:44 and my "moving time" (the subtracted for tying my shoes) was 43:36. So all in all I was happy.

Brooke and I met back up after we removed our chips and headed to the tent for the post race spread. We were both looking forward to the the hot spiced wine that was in there. Unfortunately, they were limited in the amount they could serve and she got the last 1/4 of a cup. I tracked Zina down after the race and we loaded up for the drive back to DC.

Now it is time to get ready for the big company Christmas party. That is always a lot of fun with good food and plenty to drink.


Rainmaker said...


I think I know that guy in the middle, I believe I ran with him on a Pacers run a few months back.

Xena said...

I am completely directionally retarded. I still can't believe I crossed the freaking Wilson bridge. At least I didn't get lost during the race.

kodiacbear said...

Nice report and kuddos for your encouagement to have her keep running the last mile, what a sport. Now go have some fun.