Posted by: runawaynotes | July 15, 2012

Too Hot to Handle 2012

Mother Nature has given all Dallas runners a very generous gift this morning – when I woke up and saw that the temperature was in the high 70’s, I did my own little happy dance. It was still pretty humid, but I would take that over the scorching miserable inferno that we had last year any day. My knee has decided that 3 days of yoga, stretching, and using foam roller (ouch!) were sufficient penance on my part for the hills I had made it endure on Wednesday. So, it behaved well today (another happy dance). Since I wasn’t sure how hard I wanted to push myself today, I decided to shoot for a safe goal of 30 min and then adjust my plan accordingly. In the end, the other runners ended up adjusting my plans for me.

At every race, there are always people who make me have thoughts that I cannot voice out loud because I am a lady. These are:

1. People who think that it’s ok to spend 5 minutes in a port-o-potty changing their shirt/applying Body Glide, when the line is super long and the announcement just went out that it’s 7 minutes until race start. Go behind a freakin’ port-o-potty and change your shirt. Or have your friend play a human shield. I promise, no one will be staring at you. The rest of us are too preoccupied with the fact that we really need to PEE before the race.

2. People who are going to walk the race, yet try to get as close to the start line as possible, so that every single runner behind them has to run around them. Look, ain’t no shame in walking a race. It’s a great thing to do when you’re just starting out your running journey, or your are recovering from an injury, or you are just not feeling 100%. I’ve done it. Most of us have done it. But if you know you are going to do it, please allow those who are trying to run the race to start in front of you. It’s not fun trying to dodge you when the rest of the crowd is pulling me forward.

3. People who stop randomly in the middle of the road. Look, unless you have a major cramp and you are collapsing in pain, there is no reason why you shouldn’t be able to gradually make your way to the side of the road and come to a stop there. Just because you thought you had just passed a friend of yours and you want to double check that it was indeed your friend, doesn’t mean you can stop abruptly in front of another runner and take your sweet time looking around. Same goes for tying your shoe laces. My hurdle-jumping skills are a bit rusty. You suddenly stop and crouch down in front of me, and chaos may ensue.

4. People who run 3+ abreast on a narrow road. I know you love your friends. I love my friends too. And I’ve done several races where I stayed with the same person/people from the beginning till the end. But if you want to do that, please run two abreast or single file. You can still maintain a conversation, I promise you. But the rest of us won’t have to try to squeeze between you.

5. People who bring pets/strollers to a race where no pets or strollers are allowed. There are two types of races – those that welcome your dog/toddler in a stroller with open arms, and those that don’t. I don’t participate in the races that do because I don’t want to have to jump over a dog’s leash or have to constantly watch out for some stroller’s wheels. I especially don’t want to do it with an injured knee. So, please, read the rules before the race and abide by them.

As you might have guessed from my rant above, my friend and I spent our first half a mile trying to dodge/squeeze between/run around and otherwise fight our way through the crowd. Considering the fact that Too Hold to Handle had sold out this year, the crowd was pretty insane. It thinned out eventually, so we could pick up our pace, but I didn’t want to push myself too far to try to overcompensate for lost time, so I just stuck to a 9:45/9:30 pace. I ended up finishing in 30:30 (chip time), so I almost made my goal 🙂 During the race, I have actually avoided looking at the “time elapsed” on my Garmin, and instead concentrated on the average lap pace I wanted to maintain. I figured, this way I won’t be tempted to push myself too far. I’m a little bummed out that I didn’t know how close I was to meeting my goal time and didn’t push a little harder during my last mile, but I’m sort of glad I did it this way because it would have probably resulted in some overstrained muscle and major pain down the road. Instead I am cool as a cucumber 🙂

With the marathon training program orientation coming up on Tuesday and the first run happening next Saturday, I feel like I have gotten yet another boost of confidence that I need to keep going. Feels good to be back in fighting shape!



  1. I ran 2H2H last summer and it was brutal. You got lucky this year! My race pet peeve is when people suddenly stop in the middle of the road. I think sometimes people zone out, but I’ve run into so many runners like that during a race.

    • It’s even worse when the person stopping in front of you is a little kid. Nothing like tripping over a 7-year old.

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