John and I drove back into DC today to pick up our race packets for tomorrow’s race. (The Army Ten-Miler is tomorrow, by the way. Have I mentioned that? Talked about it much? Nah, certainly not on those days I actually ran 10 miles. This is probably coming as a complete surprise to you guys. Because you know how much I don’t like to talk about what’s going on with me.) For some reason (to do with costs, I’m sure), they refuse to mail the packets out ahead of time (seriously, just charge us all an extra few bucks and mail them the week before – we’re paying a ton to register anyway), so everyone has to come into town on the Friday or Saturday before the race to check in and pick them up. It’s where we get our race bibs (and activate them) and our t-shirts, and it gives a ton of vendors the opportunity to sell lots of over-priced stuff (marked on sale, but not really) to over-excited runners. This year (maybe every year, but it’s my first year, so what do I know?), packet pick-up was at the DC Armory. Not an easy place to get to, unless you’re going by metro, but unless you live near the metro already or are staying in a hotel for the weekend, you’re probably not going by metro. Actually, it’s not that hard to get to, but for once in my life, I didn’t look at a map first. I relied on my phone’s Google navigation with GPS. So we went the long way around. Through not-great neighborhoods. Listening to my phone telling us to make impossible left turns and then re-route us through worse areas to correct the mistake I made of not turning left onto a road with three lanes of traffic that didn’t go in that direction. Silly me. Our way back out was MUCH easier and is how we should have gotten there in the first place. Thankfully, the race itself does not start at the DC Armory and does not require us to go anywhere near it, either by car or on foot.
If you’re local and you want to go into DC early tomorrow morning (it’s going to be a BEAUTIFUL day) and cheer on a shitload of runners while enjoying the monuments, well, that would be cool. 🙂 The course map is on the website (linked above) so you can find a good place to watch (there are restrictions on what you can bring to the finish area, but you don’t have to watch from there – anywhere along the mall on the Independence side would be a good spot) if you’re coming. I’ll be wearing blue shorts and a navy blue tank top if you want to keep an eye out. Purple race bib. I expect it to take me about two hours (because I am SLOW) and I’m in the third wave (starts at 8:15), so calculate accordingly if you’re looking for me at a certain mile-marker. I’m hoping adrenaline will help my pace, but I mostly just care about not getting directed straight to the finish line (and being unable to finish the race) if I don’t make it to the 5-mile mark by 9:35. I say I’m worried about that, but I’ve done it enough times now that I’m about as certain as I can be that I’ll beat that particular deadline by at least 20 minutes. The five miles after that will be the hard ones.
With that, I’m going to try not to think too hard about it anymore tonight. John and I are going to pick up dinner (spaghetti) and settle in and watch Chariots of Fire and go to bed early. Tomorrow morning is going to arrive WAY earlier than usual.