Well, suffice it to say it was a "mother" of a day.
It may have been Mother's Day, but it wasn't a typical Mother's Day for me. For 2022, Mother's Day came with the added bonus of a morning race...and it was a doozy!
We're talking all kinds of crazy (especially in terms of weather), blessing Iowa's capital city for the Des Moines Women's 10K on the morning of May 8th. It's a good thing I have a sense of humor, because Momma N certainly didn't want to play nice...
Barb and I arrived on the scene around 7:30. We hadn't driven in any rain (though we did see intermittent lightning), but the forecast was looking rather gloomy...and it started sprinkling lightly upon our arrival. We found parking and walked a short ways to the start line, located just outside of the Jasper Winery. This wasn't our first rodeo with inclement weather, so we were prepared with ponchos.
Upon arriving at the pre-race rally spot, we learned the races had been delayed to 8:30 (there also was a half marathon). A short while later, the 10K was delayed further, to 9:00, and the half marathon cancelled (but participants were given the option to run the 10K).
When it was time to line up for the start, the threat of lightning had passed, but the sky was still looking dark. I was glad I'd had the forethought to wear a hat (and braid my hair). If it did downpour on us, I was ready (and had a dry change of clothes in the car).
The route started out going east, towards Fleur Drive. The southeast wind was simply evil, and that's putting it nicely. Once we turned left (on Fleur), going north, things were much better. The crowd of runners finally had a chance to spread out, and the wind was at our backs for a brief while.
Shortly after the 1-mile mark, we took a right on MLK, Jr. Boulevard. This had us going due east, against the ferocious 23mph wind (again). I still had my poncho on, and I could feel it sticking to my shoulders, but was afraid to attempt pulling it off. I didn't want to rip it off (in case I'd need it later), but knew it would take some effort to get it to "release" from my wet body. So, I just kept moving forward, head down (to keep my hat from blowing off).
The route took us almost an entire mile on MLK, then we made a U-turn and headed back west. Just after the 2-mile mark, we then headed onto one of the paths into Grays Lake Park. I spotted a water stand, so I knew that would be my best opportunity to shed the poncho. I grabbed a cup of water, and walked a few steps while drinking, then carefully peeled off the poncho (from my sticky skin) and rolled it up to carry with me. Onward!
Wouldn't you know, about five minutes later, it started to rain (we were headed south, BTW, still fighting the SE wind). I continued to keep my head down, but did have to occasionally reach up and secure my hat tighter on my head. I debated putting the poncho back on, but (again) knew that would be a production with my damp skin and the constant wind. So, I just kept going.
I passed the 3-mile mark (it was still raining lightly), and a short ways further, we crossed into an underground tunnel that was all lit up with bright lights in numerous colors. A lot of spectators were huddled inside. I'd like to think they were there for the sole purpose of cheering for us runners, but they were probably seeking shelter from the rain. None the less, there were some cowbells ringing, so it was all good.
Once we were past the 4-mile mark, the rain had stopped (yay!) and the route then took us back towards the winery. We looped around some beautiful blossoming trees, kind of in a figure-8 pattern, and I spotted the 5-mile mark.
All that remained was a bit of an out-and back stretch that wound back around, to a bridge (a rather steep, but short climb), and then the final jaunt to the finish line. Whew...done!
|My splits: 9:01/9:06/9:11/9:06/9:21/9:19/1:29 (the final .11)|
Boy, did it feel good to be done! Although I'd done the Fight for Air Climb the day prior, I think my legs were more sore from fighting the wind and keeping myself vertical than from all the action on the stairs at Principal Park. Although the wind was out of the southeast, it felt like it was constantly in my face, no matter which direction I was running. I later learned the wind had actually picked up during the time I was running...increasing from 23mph to 25mph. Thankfully, the temps were warm and the rain was light!
How did I do? Well, I was pleasantly surprised how "fast" my finish time was because it felt like a continuous slogfest fighting the wind. But, I did manage a third place AG, so that was a nice reward.
Since the first place gal had left, and the second place gal wasn't around, they gave me the grand prize award, which was a huge fruit basket.
I also got a bottle of wine to bring home (which was my actual 3rd-place award). Not a bad haul!
Barb did well, too, securing a first place AG! She got a bottle of wine and fruit basket as well.
I gotta say the event swag was pretty sweet! All participants received finisher medals, event shirts, stemless wine glasses and a deluxe backpack.
|excuse the mirror image of the back (LOL), but you get the idea|
Some final thoughts...
This was a very well-organized event. There also was a 5K, Saturday afternoon, and a half marathon relay option (which had to be altered due to the half marathon's last minute cancellation). The course was pretty flat, for the most part, and offered some scenic sights through the park. Unfortunately, I missed a lot of the scenery since I kept my head down to prevent my hat from taking flight. Overall, I am happy with my finish time. The wind was quite the dragon to slay, though!
So that's how my Mother's Day started...kind of a gift to myself.
Have you ever ran a race on Mother's Day? Ever raced in a rain poncho? How about scoring the first place AG winner's grand prize (in their absence)?
I'm linking this with Kim and Zenaida for the Tuesday Topics Link-Up
By the way...are you following me on social media?
That was an epic battle with the poncho, haha!ReplyDelete
Congrats on placing 3rd in your AG, Kim! Excellent gender placement, too.
Awesome that you got the fruit basket from the no.1 woman.
I love the backpack and the wineglass. How much was the entry fee for all that swag?
Thanks, Catrina! I'm thinking the entry fee was $45 or so (it was much higher, though, as we got closer to race day) ? We got a discount (several months ago) because the same sponsor company also does DAM to DSM, and they offered that perk for doing both races.Delete
Well done to you and Barb and what a haul between you! I hate running in a cap and worrying it will blow off - when I had my hair cut a lot shorter I made sure I could still create a ponytail to stick through the hole at the back but that doesn't always work!ReplyDelete
I try to wear a cap when there's a chance of rain, but they definitely are NOT wind-friendly.Delete
thank you ;-)Delete
You should be happy with that finish! Between the wind and the climb the day before, that's awesome. Add in a delayed start . . .ReplyDelete
Of course the rain would start after you took the poncho off! When it's windy & I have a baseball hat on, I put a light gaiter around it to keep it on. I had one half that was very windy & I spent so much time clutching that hat . . ..
It's a good 2ish minutes "slower" than my PR, but given the race day conditions, I'm very pleased with my finish time ;-) The wind was absolutely ridiculous!Delete
Crazy weather on race day is never any fun, but you navigated everything so well! Congrats on your 3rd place AG win and you already know I love all of that swag!!ReplyDelete
The race day conditions were not fun...but at least I run in those conditions occasionally so it wasn't a big deal. But still....Delete
Congrats on a difficult race with so many obstacles. That's cool that you got to brig home the fruit basket.ReplyDelete
Yes, I felt guilty bringing home the basket...but it would have had to go home with someone else (since the other two gals were MIA).Delete
What an awesome Mother's Day present! Iowa Weather 0, Kim 1ReplyDelete
It did make for an interesting Mother's Day!Delete
you have had a lot of fun races lately! Nice job out there even despite the challenging weather-congratsReplyDelete
This race was fun, but it could have been great had the weather been a little better. I regret not being able to enjoy the course much due to my high-maintenance hat situation.Delete
Wow - you've been busy lately! Glad you were able to make it through despite the less-than-ideal weather conditions. And what a fun bonus to each walk away with high placements and some yummy food!ReplyDelete
The fruit was much appreciated!Delete
Congrats on your award! Nice that you got multiple prizes! That weather sounds really rough- way to push through!ReplyDelete
The wind has been so nasty this spring!Delete
You and Barb were so prepared and look at the haul you both brought back!!! Wow - 3000 stairs followed by a 10K in that kind of weather, I hereby declare you WARRIOR of the year!ReplyDelete
Ha ha WARRIOR of the year, LOL ;-)Delete
Wow- you did great, especially considering those conditions! It sounds crazy, especially that wind. I can't believe first place left without her prize, but she was probably so cold and wet. Good decision to bring along dry clothes- that move earned you a fruit basket!ReplyDelete
I was really surprised the 1st-place and 2nd-place gals had BOTH disappeared. Their loss ;-)Delete
Way to go even with the wind! Why must there be wind during our races?ReplyDelete
I just realized that I had started this recap ages ago, but hadn't commented - oops. Congrats on placing 3rd in your AG and for sticking around and getting the 1st place fruit basket! The wind has been crazy this spring.ReplyDelete