This past weekend I ran the GoFar Challenge in Fargo, ND. It was fun and I learned a lot about me throughout the whole ordeal.
So the GoFar Challenge is a 5K run/walk on Friday night followed by a race (either 10K, Half, or Full marathon) Saturday AM. I opted originally for the 5K/Marathon combo, but just before Easter I decided that it might be smarter for me to switch to the 5K/Half combo. With FXB I hadn't been running as much and while I was stronger, I just didn't feel comfortable with running 26.2.
Anyway, I ran with two of my friends - Tom and Sara - who are engaged and getting married this fall. Tom is a super fast runner and Sara's a wee bit slower than me. So this was a good matchup for Friday night. Tom and I talked and subtly urged Sara along while we dodged one of the most intensely packed 5Ks I've ever been a part of. Seriously - something like over 6000 people participated. Wow.
MS was along, as usual, and he got a picture of us coming across the finish line. He missed our high-five, but he had us pose for this one at the end. So much fun.
Saturday was the Half. I honestly thought I was ready for this and could have made at least the middle of my three goals. Yes, I set three goals for each longer distance race: a) the time I really want (in this case 2:20); b) the time I can live with (2:30); and c) the absolute slowest time I'll allow (2:45). Well, I made the last one on this race. Finished in 2:41, which I was really upset with until MS reminded me that I had been sick all week prior to this race and was still having a bit of a cough and phlegm. Fair enough. My legs did feel pretty good through the race but I just couldn't get the momentum I wanted. Again, it was a really crowded race (over 7000 I believe) and I felt like I was dodging people the entire time. Then just before we hit the halfway mark we merged with the full marathoners which made it unbearable. They were in stride (sort of, they had 95 turns they had to deal with - seriously) and so suddenly having to deal with us slower folks sucked for them. Well it also sucked for us, because suddenly there were these faster runners trying to get around us and it was just uncomfortable.
Anyway, I met up with MS around 7.5 which was needed. I had some oranges, begged for strength and headed off again. MS had his own struggles dealing with traffic and finding his way through town. He met up with me at the end and took this picture as I was crossing the finish line. I like this one. It made me glad.
All in all, it was a good weekend. Fargo has some improvements that are needed - especially post-race (no signage or directions anywhere!, long lines for medals, longer line for food that was so backed up people couldn't even move). But otherwise it's a decent race. The people are super friendly, the pre-race build up the morning of was great, and having everything from the Expo to the finish line in the Fargodome was pretty cool (despite parking issues).
Now, I'm looking to find my next race. I have a 5K at the end of June, but I'm thinking of another half mid-June. We'll see. :)