Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Bloomsday 2014

Traditional finisher's shirt pose.
A couple weeks ago I ran Bloomsday, a 12k race in Spokane, WA. My dad grew up there, so it's kind of a family thing to participate, but I did it for the first time last year.

It's not the best timing for me, coming so soon after tax season. I knew going into this that I had way less fitness than at this time last year, so I had no expectation of beating my previous time. And I didn't. At least I cut 11 seconds off my time up Doomsday Hill? 

It was still a fun weekend though! The weather was a bit cooler than last year, and threatening rain, but it fortunately held off until after the race.

I started that Saturday morning with a yoga class at The Bhaktishop, since Jasmine was in town guest teaching. I had a couple hours to come home and pack, and then flew to Spokane, and my mom drove up to meet me there.

I'm not usually into staying at race expos any longer than necessary to pick up my bib - they're just really crowded, and there's nothing for sale that I can't find in a store back home. But this time, I was actually looking for something that I hadn't seen in the running stores I frequent - Altra running shoes. 

Altra running shoes are zero-drop (that is, the heel isn't raised), just like the Vivo shoes I typically run in, but unlike the thin soles (so you can feel the terrain you're running on) of most minimalist shoes, Altras have cushioning. They also have a wide toe-box - this is a feature, to some degree or another, of all minimalist shoes (so you toes can spread out like they're naturally supposed to), but I think the Altra's is the widest I've come across.

I wore them for a short run after I got them, just to make sure nothing significant rubbed the wrong way, and then tried them out for my long(ish) run last weekend of 6 miles. After being used to my more minimalist shoes, they feel like running on marshmallows! I'm still going to use thinner soled shoes for most runs, but stick with these for longer runs, especially anything in the double digits.

The race was ok, but I'm hoping to increase my mileage more this summer, maintain a better fitness base through tax season, and do better next year. For such a huge race, it's so well run, very organized (though somehow, inputting the same overly-optimistic finish time that I did last year, I was was moved up a wave this year), and I look forward to continuing it each year. I think my mom is finally convinced to train to walk it next year, too. :) 

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