So I’m definitely happy that I ended up doing the Broad Street run on Sunday.
As I mentioned before, it was kind of a game time decision for me. I had no idea I was going to do it on Friday, so I did a bunch of leg stuff at the gym – Stuff I hadn’t done for at least a month. So naturally, my legs were sore as hell on Saturday, and into Sunday. Even going up and down stairs was painful. I was kinda worried about this, but I didn’t let it stop me.
Signup for the Broad Street Run was at Lincoln Financial Field. They ended at 5 pm on Saturday afternoon, so I left my house at 3. I figured it shouldn’t take me more than 45 minutes to get there and sign up. Unfortunately, I didn’t take into account the fact that there was a Phillies game at Citizens Bank Park, and a Dead concert at the Wachovia Spectrum. The hippie traffic was unbelievable. I hit a ton of traffic on 76, and moved about 2 miles an hour onto Broad Street. I parked illegally around 5:10 pm and ran as fast as I could to go sign up.
When I got into the Linc, they told me that they were sold out, which I definitely didn’t anticipate. The lady told me (and the others in line) that we could stick around and see if they were able to locate any more race bibs. So I waited, and she was able to find 5 more. I was 5th in line, so I lucked out.
I ate a huge pasta dinner a little later that night (the “carb load” before a race), but it didn’t “come out the other end” at any point during the night, or the next morning… So I was a little worried about that.
When I woke up (at 5 am) it was pouring outside, and chilly to boot. I decided to stick with shorts and a t-shirt though. I parked my car at Citizens Bank Park, and hopped on the Broad Street line to Central High School, where the race was set to start.
I found some portapotties about 10 minutes before the race started, but the lines were ridiculously long, and there was no toilet paper left. Fortunately, I found someone with a single tissue in her pocket, and she also informed me that the race tag I was wearing on my shoe would be activated when I crossed the starting line, so it didn’t matter if I started right at 8:30. I’ve never made better use of a single tissue in my life.
I believe the final count for participants was something like 26,500, so it wouldn’t have been possible for me to start right away anyway. I was probably in the first 10,000 though.
When I started running, the rain slowed down to a slight drizzle, and after the first mile or so, I felt great. I had Between the Buried and Me (“Colors”) in my ears, and I was definitely “in the zone”. I felt like was running with a pack of wild animals or something. It was a strange (but very cool) feeling to be running in the middle of the road through all of these areas of the city that I normally navigate in a car.
I did a great job pacing myself this time. I’ve had issues with that in past races, so I kept reminding myself that it didn’t matter if people passed me, since my main goal was to finish the race without walking. And I did that, so I felt pretty good about myself.
After we passed City Hall (probably around the 6-mile mark), the rain started getting heavier, but it was perfect timing. I don’t think I’ve ever appreciated rain more than I did during this race. It felt amazing.
Due to the rain and overall weather conditions, it was hard to see very far ahead, but when the finish line was finally in sight, I took off. It was around this time that the rain started to pour down. Four lanes of (human) traffic bottlenecked into two, so it became much more difficult to pass people, but I was doing my best, and I even made a couple of leaps. I was amazed by how much energy I had during the last few minutes of the run, it was definitely an awesome feeling.
I ended up finishing in 1 hour and 32 minutes. That link says that I placed 10289 out of 23093 – I guess some people either didn’t finish or just didn’t show up? Either way, I’m happy with the outcome and know that I can do better next time if I actually train for it. Maybe I’ll beat some Kenyans?