Saturday, January 19, 2013

Run to the Brewery!

My mission to do more fun, smaller, home-town races is off to a great start with the Sayville Run to the Brewery, a race that starts and ends at the Blue Point Brewing Co.

I headed out to Long Island on Friday night to stay with my friend Kaitlyn who was also running the race. Too much tasty Italian food, frozen yogurt, and a couple of NBC sitcoms later, a 6:15 wake-up call was set. Friday was freezing, at a whopping 25 degrees, and even though I knew Saturday would be warmer, it was so windy and difficult to know what to wear. Somehow we ended up in the same exact outfits as the last time we ran a race on Long Island together.

We met up with some of Kaitlyn's coworkers and my friend Jaimie (who I also tricked into convinced to run) and her friend. Kate and I started out together, but split up after the first water station around mile 2.5. This was also when—as usual—I got into my own head.

"Can I really do this? I know I just ran 9 miles, but I'm not feeling so great. I wore too many layers. What if I get halfway an can't run back? Is there a sweep car? Can I really not do this? Should I take a DNF? I would never forgive myself and it would ruin every run I tried to do ever again. You're being an asshole, you can at least make it to 6 miles. But this is a small race, what if you re the last person to finish? Then you're last, now man up and keep running..."

This went on until about mile 5, at which point I recognized I was halfway there, felt a little less nauseous, and realized I would not be the last person to cross the finish line—even if I walked the rest of the way. I was still over heating though, and wasted a good 5 minutes trying to peel off shirts in vain, stuff my gloves in my sleeves and carry on. Also, my shirt pocket broke right before the race started so I had to carry my phone until I rolled up my sleeves and then shove it in a too-tiny pants pocket which also wasted time and was kind of uncomfortable. Also, unfortunately, Kaitlyn had my Gu. It was an out-and-back course, so I figured I could snag it from her at the turnaround, but the turnaround was a big loop with no chance of finding each other. Boohoo.

In the end, I rolled up to mile 10 at 1:44:46—just under a 10:30 pace, which I'm totally fine with, all things considered. I would've been happy with anything under 11. The run was all well and good, but the post-race festival was fantastic.

There was a really good band playing, and all the food and beverages you could imagine (except water-WTF?) There were pastries, bagels, muffins, heros, pasta, coffee, juice and, most importantly, BEER. With one of my favorites no less, Blue Point Blueberry. And all for the meager registration fee of $35. (Suck on that New York Road Runners, who's charging $80 to run a half marathon in a park I can run in for free which doesn't require any street closures, and is partially sponsored. You can keep your lame bagel and apple.)

Kate and I met up with Jaimie and her friend, and got some ber. Then we made our rounds around the tent, found Kate's coworkers, and got more beer. Lots of it. The funny thing about drinking beer after you run 10 miles is that you don't even feel it. Maybe your body needs to replace the carbs and ethanol too quickly?...not that you've got any ethanol in your body to replace. No matter, it was a super fun event!
That's about 30 beers between 2 hours.

[Nerd highlight: everyone was drinking and talking and being loud in the tent when they got on the mic to announce the winners, and as everyone started to get quiet some dude next to me shouts out desperately "I VOLUNTEER!" And I might have been the only one who got it, but it was hilarious nonetheless]

In the spirit of running non-NYRR races I think we'll try out the NYC Runs Hot Chocolate 10k next weekend. And what do you know—another great post-race beverage.

Keep 'em coming!

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