Saturday morning was cold with a constant drizzle of rain just as the weather forecaster had predicted. My strained optimism had proved its fault, and I succumbed to the reality of running 6.2 long miles in the wind and rain. I had had high hopes of the beautiful views I would take in jogging over the Neuse River Bridge in downtown New Bern. The morning sun shining on the water. Fresh breezes. Blue skies. The beautiful sailboats floating in the harbor. [sigh] Those views are reserved for sunnier, happier mornings, I guess.
Mike drove me across the bridge to the neighboring town of Bayboro at 7:30 a.m. to drop me off at the starting line of this year's Neuse River Bridge 10K Run. I had a momentary weakness given my hatred of spending any amount of time outdoors while it's raining and thought I might change my mind, preferring to just go enjoy a cup of coffee instead. Then I quickly said "to heck with it, let's just get this over with!" and jumped out of the car.
When the horn blew, off I went, cursing myself for the entire first mile as I ducked my head into the blustering wind. Who in their right mind would willingly run over a bridge in the cold, rain and wind?! The guy running next to me must've felt the same as he grunted about the weather conditions and how he couldn't wait to get this over with. I agreed and said something about just wanting to hurry and get warm. And with that I sped up in hopes of getting my blood flowing faster and thus my body warmer.
I crossed the three mile marker at 23.5 minutes and feeling good. Water was dripping off the brim of my cap, and my pants, shoes and socks were soaked, but I had warmed up and felt I could finish with no problems. The only bad parts were the gusts of wind coming over the bridge and the exhaust from the cars passing by.
I crossed the finish line at 53:09 minutes and was happy to have shaved nearly four minutes off my last 10K time. Mike, AK and the Newbolds were waiting at the finish line. Thanks to you guys for waiting in the rain for me! Sarah had planned on running, too, but unfortunately she hurt her ankle pretty bad in our aerobics class earlier in the week, so Colin ran the 5K in her place. He finished 16th, running it in 21 minutes! Way to go, Colin!
All-in-all, I'm glad I ran in spite of the elements. And I'm also glad it's over!