Monday, June 3, 2013

State Street Mile

On June 2nd 2013 the 14th annual Platinum Performance State Street Mile took place in downtown Santa Barbara. It is a popular local event that raises money for the Crime Victim Emergency Fund. I had a lot of reservations about signing myself up, but the cause and the excitement won out. I registered to run in my age group race and my favorite event of the day, the dog mile.

At this race there are several events to choose from. They have the family fun mile, the dog mile, 7 age group categories and the open and master’s elite mile. Once you register for one, you can enter a second for free. I don’t currently have a dog, so I did a shout out to facebook to see if anyone’s pooch would like to run with me. My cousin Stephen and his wife Barbie offered their dog Chase, who I adore.
Race morning arrived bright and early with a nice marine layer hanging over the city. I was extremely nervous! I haven’t done any speed work since last year due to my IT-Band problems and I was worried I was just going to embarrass myself. No one ever wants to finish last, but I was excited about finally participating in this event. I’ve wanted to do it the last few years, but due to injuries haven’t been able too.

Family fun mile
Stephen, Barbie and Chase arrived just in time to see me line up for my age group race. Talk about dog delivery service! Daddio was further ahead ready to take pictures. He’d told me to just try to stay with someone near the lead unless they were going way too fast. As soon as the whistle was blown, we shot off like a bat out of hell. Two guys and one girl quickly took the lead (at the time I thought it was only one girl and one guy, somehow I missed the second guy). I tried to latch onto them, but knew pretty quickly that I wouldn’t be able to maintain the pace unless I wanted to be walking it in or end up collapsed on the curb.

Quarter of a mile
The start gave me a great lead on the rest of the group. The other three were ahead and fading, but the rest of the pack was behind by more than a block. Each quarter of a mile, they would call out the time and I would try to listen for the person behind me, but never could hear their time. I kept glancing back, but no one was gaining on me, in fact they were falling further behind. I did get a tiny bit lazy here, with them further and further behind and the lead further and further ahead, I did slow my pace a little. When the finish started to loom in front of me, I didn’t think I had anything left in the tank for a sprint. Heck, I felt like I was sprinting! But the announcer called out that I could pick up speed, so I did!
I finished in 6:40, which has to be a mile record for me. I was hoping for low sevens, so I was stoked with my time. As I made my way through the finisher's shoot, I was handed a second place plaque for being the second woman in my age group to finish! I felt so blessed! I managed to make it through the crowd in time to cheer in the next finisher and the rest of the group.
Second place!!!
I loitered for a few minutes chatting and then made my way back up the street. I enthusiastically told Daddio the news when I met up with him and together we met up with Stephen, Barbie and Chase. The dog mile was more than an hour away, so we hung out, cheering on runners and talking. When it came time for me and Chase to run, he wasn’t so sure he wanted to do it. He stood stiff next to me watching his owners. I tried to give him a pep talk, but all he wanted was Barbie.

When the whistle blew, dogs of all shapes and sizes shot off, while I tried to drag Chase. He fought me for the first quarter of a mile worried about his owners and then suddenly he jumped on my leg, licked my hand and started running. We did a decent pace for his little legs for the next half mile. He wanted to run over and greet all the volunteers and supporters who were calling out and cheering for him, but I kept him focused. I was trying to encourage him to try and pass a couple dogs ahead of us, but he wasn’t interested. He started running out of gas around the last quarter of a mile, but found some more energy when hearing the excitement coming from the finish line. He picked up speed, so I did too and we finished strong! I was proud of the little guy.
I think he had fun
On the way back to his owners, he seemed to have more energy than I did. He was going up and greeting other dogs and energetically jumping up on my leg and licking my hand. I think he had a good time!

Overall, it was a great event and a fun morning with friends and family!
I wore him out

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