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The Great Taco Run

Posted Oct 01 2012 12:35am

Saturday afternoon we went to pick up used shoes from Lukes Locker in Dallas for the Girls on the Run shoe drive… While we were there my step-mom picked up her packet for The Great Taco Run 10 miler, and actually ended up dropping down to the 10k. We were chatting away about it, and the employees asked me what I had on deck this weekend. After telling them I had 6 miles to map out near Trophy Club, they all started yelling at me to just register for The Great Taco Run. It was being used as a bench mark for the marathoners & half marathoners that are training for Fall races. At this point, it was literally like 4:55. I had 5 minutes to register before it was too late.

Talk about good timing.

For the second day in a row, I woke up at 4:30 only to see it raining outside… Again. or should I say… STILL…. I’m not going to lie. I thought about just turning the alarm off and rolling back over in bed. Actually, even after I got up and showered I considered this. However I had 6 miles either way and the rain didn’t appear to be going anywhere anytime soon. So it was going to be a wet morning regardless.

Don’t let that smile fool you.. I’m totally faking it.

The drive into downtown Dallas was really misleading. The semis all over the place splashing the rain that was collecting on 35 made it look like it was pouring out! When we turned off the highway and parked in Victory we quickly learned it was raining still, but not as hard as we had originally thought. Insert sigh of relief here. But only slightly, it was still rainy and chilly.

I looked around, and was very intimidated. You can just look at some runners and tell they are speed demons. I was starting to wonder if I was going to be the last person to finish. I’d cry a little if I was the last person out of 1,900 runners. (Granted, most of that 1,900 was doing the 10 miler)

Like these speed demons I’ve had the pleasure to get to know this week! (spoiler alert. They ran the 10 miler and both finished before me! HAAAA)

(Yea, I’m looking forward to getting down here and training with them. aka chasing them.. It’ll make me faster)

The 10K and the 10 Miler started together and ran most of the course together, only the 10k turned around sooner, obviously…. By the time the horn blew to signal the start, the rain had pretty much stopped. Thank goodness!

The course was pretty neat. Gwyn didn’t love it, but she’s ran all over Dallas so its nothing new to her. There was a part where we ran through the warehouse district, and that was a little.. meh, but the rest was nice. We ran just outside of downtown so we had a great view of the sky scrapers, and then ran along the Trinity River.

The first mile I was just soaking in my surroundings. The view was beautiful, there was a great energy considering it was still sprinkling and chilly. Not the finest running weather by any means. I got caught up in the moment and when Gwyn & I hit the 1st mile marker I looked down and literally, outloud did a “HOLY CRAP” I was running a 9:36 mile. SLOOOOOOOOOOOOOOW down girlfran! Gwyn & I slowed down and I could tell she was really itching to get back into her groove. After a ton of reassuring her I convinced her to leave me behind. She had a goal, I did not. I was just using it as a training run. Plus, if I’m being perfectly honest I’m one of those people who prefers to run alone. I like to stick both earbuds in, turn the jams UPUPUP and zone out. It helps me get into my groove if I don’t have to worry about someone trying to talk to me or stay even with my pace. I love the way we did it actually. Running the first mile together kept me a bit faster than I probably would have other wise.. At first at least ;)

Miles 2-3 were kind of a blur. I was just jamming out to my music and enjoying running through Dallas. See, for as long as I lived in Dallas, and for as many years as I have been visiting my dad down here (erm… since I was 6) I’ve probably been downtown a grand total of…. 4 times? Maybe? IF that. Seriously… The only times I’ve really ever been downtown was for events at the American Airline Center.

When I hit the 5k mark I was not pleased. I felt fine, for the most part… My chest was getting a wee bit tight (darn you illness. JUST LEAVE ALREADY.) but I was feeling fine in the legs and wasn’t too fatigued, really. But I just was not impressed that I was only half way there. I wanted a nap. A coffee. A nap while drinking coffee. I wanted to be out of the rain. My toes were soggy. I was just kind of over it.

Then we went through the warehouse district. This area was just kind of weird, and not at all visually stimulating. As if I wasn’t already over the whole ordeal, this just made me want to throw in the towel and hop on the cop cart.. But, I didn’t ;) Around this time the rain started again. Not hard, but sprinkling. It was perfect, it was starting to get a bit warm and the ever so slight rain made it feel absolutely PERFECT!

It didn’t help when I hit the turnaround and started looking around, only to notice that most of the people around me were wearing blue bibs. Aka, the 10 mile bibs. I was in a sea of speedsters while my slow-ass was just chugging along. It was okay though. I got a big boost of energy during the last mile and kicked it back up a bit. My pace for this race was absolutely ALL. OVER. THE. PLACE. It was quite comical when I uploaded my stats to Garmin Connect. haha.

Finally we were in the last stretch & hallelujah it was downhill! That was really nice, I sped up and sprinted the last bit through the finish line.

1:09:46 is what the clock said as I passed through. My goal was to finish in under 1:15. A slow time for sure, but with my chest still giving me crap on anything over 3 miles, and the rain, and the fact that I raced a 5k Saturday.. I would have been more than happy even if I did finish in 1:15!

It was a good race. It really was. I was just not really in it mentally, but the course was good, and the tacos after were DELICIOUS. I grabbed two from the Fuzzy’s stand because OMG I WOULD LIVE AT FUZZY’S TACO if I could. Then we were out of there. We were both seriously dying for some coffee and to take off our wet socks.

It was kind of perfect timing. On the drive home the rain started coming down a lot harder than it was during the race!!

Over all it really was a fun race. But I learned the 10k is my absolute least favorite distance to race. I just… I don’t know what it was. I’m not sure if it was the fact that I raced the morning before, the fact that I was running on fumes because of how busy I’ve been all week, what with traveling and everything. Or if it was that my chest started bothering me toward the end… I just was not very impressed by the 10k distance…. The 10 miler is still my favorite distance to race. Not that I would have been able to run 10 miles yesterday morning even if I had signed up for the 10mile run.

However if they do decide to do a 2nd annual Great Taco Run, I’ll probably make the drive up to run it again. There is a great great GREAT running community in North Texas and I am so happy to have been able to get to know so many of those awesome runners this week!

Photo Credit: LUKES LOCKER

I’ve talked to several runners about this and everyone either LOVES or HATES the 10k. Whats your stance on that particular distance? What is YOUR favorite distance to race?

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