WHAT: The Kona Run
WHEN: June 7th 2014
WHERE: Northville Mi
The Kona Run is another one of those races that has a special meaning to me. Last year it was my 3rd ever race and first ever 10K. Naturally you get an automatic PR when you run a distance for the first time but I’ve actually never been able to beat it. Did you hear what I just said… my PR is at KONA… not some flat cake walk course but a crazy hilly up and down course.
The Kona Run starts off a the Northville Downs, a horse race track which is slightly unusual yet somewhat cool way to kick off a run. Like all Kona races it was very well organized and packet pick up was hassle free. We had plenty of time before the race to go back and stash our stuff at the car and chill out for a bit.
It was a great day for a run, not too hot, not too cold …like porridge. Yes that’s it! It was a perfect porridge day for a run! Also… it was my birthday so I guess that has to count for something too eh?
We chose a spot a little too close to the front of the pack for my tastes… I felt like we were those noob runners who start at the front only to walk after a 30 foot sprint getting in everyone else’s way. The pacer near us was like 50 mins so I knew I wasn’t with my “slow runner peeps” that I feel most comfortable around. Ah well, it is what it is. We had a goal anyways… to PR so we could use this race to submit to RunDisney for the Star Wars races next year.
After the National Anthem we were off! Uhhhh wait ….oh crap …MY SHOE IS UNTIED!!! Like literally right across the starting line the damn thing comes loose and here I am in the middle of everything and I need to get off to the side. I found a slight opening and darted off the track… shoe tied …back on track …not a good start in my books. One lap around the track, through the parking lot, and up the “Kona hill” and we practically had a mile under our belts already.
I suddenly became aware that I had to pee… and it became the focus of everything. What aid station will they have a porta potty? Should I stop and wait in that awful line while the clock is ticking away? Do they even have a porta potty mid way at Kona? Maybe I can ask that guy if I can use his bathroom… maybe I can pee behind that bush… woah wait what? Was that the 4 mile marker? This is awesome! Maybe I should have to pee for every race!
The course has a lot of ups and downs, as I mentioned, and I tended to walk up the bigger ones to conserve my energy. I’d always start back running once at the top and I never really needed a break at all other that that. I felt good and before I knew it we were in the home stretch. I played that game with myself where I pick off the runners in front of me one by one convincing myself I’m not going to let that person finish ahead of me. It always seems to give me that extra boost I need.
And that was it… FINISH! Another one under my belt… I could feel it, a PR was close… VERY close!
Kona Run 2013: 1:09:01
Kona Run 2014: 1:10:36 ….yeah ….about the amount of time it takes one to move off to the side and tie a shoe like an idiot :/
But it is what it is and I’m not one to complain about time.
As always you can check out my run through Nike+
The medal, while not as good as the surf board from last year, is still very cool.
There was plenty of post-race food including Guernsey Ice Cream!
We had our arms full of goodies we had to find a place in the shade to sit for a few and eat.
They had dancers and a band …I snapped this pic as we ran by but we didn’t go over to watch at all. We headed home, showered up, and I took a good long nap… not a bad way to spend a birthday.