Apologies for this recap taking so long! Between work, school, teaching yoga and running, I’m finding it increasingly difficult to keep up with blogging!
If you missed my recap of the Falmouth Road Race Expo you can read it HERE!
The morning of the race I got out of bed to get ready for the Falmouth Road Race and honestly every single part of my body ached!
I’m recapping the weekend out of order, but I spent the entire day before the race at an amazing local yoga festival, but let me tell you, 6+ hours of active, challenging yoga really left me sore!
Jason, Pat and I got race ready and were in the car around 6:15am headed to pick up my cousin Mike who was running his first road race (although you may recognize him from my triathlon pictures last summer!).
I was so sore, I spent the majority of the car ride attempting to stretch and roll my legs – classy picture, right?
After collecting Mike we headed to park and walk to the busses to the start where we met up with Kellie! (Kellie is a running/ blogging/ Disney/ New York friend who came up for the race and I am so excited that I got to see her and show her Cape Cod!)
The Falmouth Road Race is a point to point race starting in Woods Hole, a tiny village in Falmouth (population under 1,000!) that’s home to several famous marine science institutes, the ferry to get to Martha’s Vineyard, a Coast Guard station and lots of great restaurants!
How they cram so much awesomeness into one little place I’ll never know. And how they transport and cram 13,000 runners into Woods Hole for the start of the Falmouth Road Race I’ll never understand – it’s really one of the great mysteries of life.
We had about an hour to hangout/ hydrate/ use the porta potties in Woods Hole before we lined up at the 9 min pace sign at the start.
Beginning last year the Falmouth Road Race began using a “pulse start”. Basically instead of having formal corrals, runners are asked to line up according to the pace they expect to run and then they let groups go on intervals to space out the runners.
They actually happened to cut off the start for a new “pulse” right before us, so we got to walk up to the start and literally begin right on the starting line with no one in front of us!
I have to admit, it was exhilarating and terrifying all at the same time!
It was amazing to literally cross the starting line with no one in front of us, but I also felt like I was being chased by thousands of people and was about to be trampled!
The first mile I felt ok. I knew it was going to be a tough run given my yoga festival exhausted legs and the heat.
Wow, how have I NOT mentioned the heat yet?!
The Falmouth Road Race is traditionally held on the hottest day of the summer, (again, one of the great mysteries of life how they manage that) and I was sweating before we even starting running.
I felt good and was excited to share the experience of coming around the corner out of Woods Hole and heading towards the lighthouse with Jason (it was his first time running this race!).
This picture doesn’t do it justice, but turing the corner to this view is truly breathtaking!
…and by Nobska Lighthouse.
Unfortunately after about this point stuff went downhill for me really quickly (not literally, the lighthouse is actually at the top of a big hill!).
My legs felt like lead, my feet were on fire, my sunglasses were constantly fogging up and I was struggling to breathe in the humidity.
And I was cranky.
Miles 2-6 were rough for me. I grabbed water at every stop. Ran through every hose and sprinkler the amazing spectators had out and eventually stopped and took a few walk breaks.
Ever since I just about had a panic attack running in the humidity at track club a few weeks ago when I felt like I wasn’t getting enough air, I’ve been nervous about pushing myself too hard in the heat, so whenever I started to feel like I was having trouble breathing, I stopped and walked.
The spectator support was amazing, and in past years I’ve had a great time high-fiving kids and taking it all in. This year, I wanted nothing more than for the race to be over.
I gained a little energy around mile 6. I’m not sure if it was because we were back by the water and had some amazing views (and a slight breeze if I remember correctly), or if it’s because I knew the finish was coming, but I think I can safely say that unfortunately the first and last miles were the only ones where I wasn’t wishing I was somewhere else.
Throughout the race I kept urging Jason to go ahead and I’d meet him at the finish, but he insisted on staying with me and continually said what he had been looking forward to the most about this race was experiencing it together.
After the finish line we gathered all our snacks including lots of water, Cape Cod potato chips and Yasso ice cream bars that really were perfect at that moment (Falmouth Road Race always has lots of great post-race snacks!).
We hung around at the field for awhile and met up with a lot of our friends that had ran also. Everyone’s recap sounded familiar – it was a tough one.
And unfortunately when we met up with Kellie she told us that a lot of the water stops had actually run out of water!
I have to say, this is one of the things that I just find unacceptable at a race, there is absolutely no reason any runner that is running within the time limits of the race should not expect to have access to water on the course, especially on a hot day. This just makes me mad and a bit disappointed in an otherwise extremely well run race.
After the race I began to process some of the feelings I had out on the course. My first being, “I don’t think I want to run that race again, it’s just too damn hot, maybe next year I’ll just volunteer.”
And I still sort of feel that way. I don’t do well in heat and this race is notorious for being hot and humid and it may just not be for me.
After I got past the frustration of having such a tough run I began to feel really bad for being so miserable during a race that Jason was so looking forward to running together. It was honestly just really selfish of me to do nothing but whine and moan and groan for about 5 of the 7 miles. In hindsight, I honestly wish I could have just accepted that I was having a tough run that day, but still enjoyed the experience for what it was.
I do love the Falmouth Road Race, but to be honest, the jury is still out on whether or not I’ll be entering my name for the lottery next year.