September 20, 1997
At my first Chevys to Chevys (my first REAL 5K), I did the 5K, but the REAL Chevys to Chevys ran between TWO Chevys (rather than in a circle). It was point to point, and they offered a shuttle between the end and the start, plus the run was along park paths (instead of streets) and would be more interesting.
Plus, with the course being relatively flat, I could maybe improve upon my Houlihan’s to Houlihan’s 12K time (no steep run up to the Golden Gate Bridge here).
As with any race in my first year-and-a-half of running, I ran conservatively at the start and worked my way up. Ideally, I wanted to break one hour. I remember the park path being covered almost completely by trees and having a few bumps in the path.
At one of the bumps, I lost my balance and almost knocked over the female runner next to me. I quickly apologized, and strangely enough, I kept seeing her in many of the races that I ran, because we had a similar pace (and no, we didn’t date – she was in her 60s – Myra Rhodes).
I managed to get to the finish in 58:09, a new PR!
Afterwards, we had a small Chevys snack and got the ride back to the start, which was a scary start. The shuttle buses were yellow school buses and the road was not wide enough to accommodate the entire bus. In order for it to turn around, it would pull minutely off the road, turn the wheel hard, and make a 30-point turn. Because it was a school bus, in order to shift from Forward to Reverse, the engine was turned off and then on again. I wondered if we would ever make it back to the start (or if it would be quicker to run back).
After these races, I would unpin my race number and then tack it onto my wall, along with a note about what happened (as in, if I PR’ed). I also logged all of my runs, races or not, into a journal. I have continued the practice of logging all of my runs, but not pinning all of my numbers on to the wall. I still have ALL of my numbers, but I keep them in albums or in numerical order (trying to collect one of every number).