Traditionally the Bandido 10 Mile race is the first race of the new year, but this year it fell so it was the last race on 12/31. It is a low key 10 mile, well organized race along the bike path on the canal and about 75 runners attend. An extra bonus is it's only $2 and there are bananas, power bars, Gatorade and water at the end.
The race started at Granada Park with water around 2.5 and turn around at 19th ave. At the turn around a volunteer (thanks Jeff!) called out the 5 mile split time. There are two street crossings where volunteers (thanks Brett) held stop signs holding traffic for the runners. Last year there were photographers on the course but I didn't see them this year. The first place male and female runners win a terra cotta pot with an aloe vera plant.
As I often do, I show up to a race thinking I'll treat it as a training run. Once there though my competitive nature kicks in and I go for it. My goal was to run 8:00's and not run too hard since I have Ragnar Relay Florida Keys next weekend. The first 2 miles were MISERABLE. My lower legs ached and burned and had I been out for a run, I would have stopped and I seriously considered it. I know that it takes me 2+ miles to warm up and was hoping the pain would stop, which thankfully it did. At 5 miles I thought there would be a water station but there wasn't. I didn't need it but wished there was one. I finished in 1:18:24, 7:50 pace.
My co-worker is training for the PF Changs half marathon and she ran this race to get in her 10 miler, her longest distance to date. After I finished, I ran back to get her and was so tired I had to walk some. When I met up with her she was running strong and I had to pick up my sluggish pace. I love seeing new runners get out and run and train for a half marathon. She did so awesome and I'm proud to watch her run towards her goal.
Two days later my legs are incredibly tired and ache. My run this morning was very tough and I had to stop after 2 miles and turn back. At least I got out there and got the blood flowing. I only hope that come Friday, my legs are refreshed and ready to race from Miami to Key West.